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Starch grains found on Neandertal teeth debunks theory that dietary deficiencies caused their ext...
Smithsonian Science ^ | 3 January 2011 | unattributed

Posted on 03/03/2012 2:32:00 PM PST by SunkenCiv

Researchers from George Washington University and the Smithsonian Institution have discovered evidence to debunk the theory that Neandertals' disappearance was caused in part by a deficient diet -- one that lacked variety and was overly reliant on meat. After discovering starch granules from plant food trapped in the dental calculus on 40-thousand-year-old Neandertal teeth, the scientists believe that Neandertals ate a wide variety of plants and included cooked grains as part of a more sophisticated, diverse diet similar to early modern humans...

The discovery of starch granules in the calculus on Neandertal teeth provides direct evidence that they made sophisticated, thoughtful food choices and ate more nutrient-rich plants, for example date palms, legumes and grains such as barley. Until now, anthropologists have hypothesized that Neandertals were outlived by early modern humans due in part to the former's primitive, deficient diet, with some scientists arguing Neandertals' diets were specialized for meat-eating. As such, during major climate swings Neandertals could be outcompeted by early humans who incorporated diverse plant foods available in the local environment into their diets.

Henry, Brooks and Piperno's discovery suggests otherwise. The researchers discovered starch granules in dental calculus, which forms when plaque buildup hardens, on the fossilized teeth of Neandertal skeletons excavated from Shanidar Cave in Iraq and Spy Cave in Belgium. Starch granules are abundant in most human plant foods, but were not known to survive on fossil teeth this old until this study. The researchers' findings indicate that Neandertals' diets were more similar to those of early humans than originally thought. The researchers also determined from alterations they observed in the starch granules that Neandertals prepared and cooked starch-rich foods to make them taste better and easier to digest.

(Excerpt) Read more at smithsonianscience.org ...


TOPICS: History; Science; Travel
KEYWORDS: godsgravesglyphs

Full title: "Starch grains found on Neandertal teeth debunks theory that dietary deficiencies caused their extinction"

The four keywords, sorted oldest to newest, duplicates out, but there could be some bogus topics, such as . KEYWORDS: neandertal; neandertals; neanderthal; neanderthals
1 posted on 03/03/2012 2:32:06 PM PST by SunkenCiv
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The Neandertal Enigma
by James Shreeve

in local libraries
Frayer's own reading of the record reveals a number of overlooked traits that clearly and specifically link the Neandertals to the Cro-Magnons. One such trait is the shape of the opening of the nerve canal in the lower jaw, a spot where dentists often give a pain-blocking injection. In many Neandertal, the upper portion of the opening is covered by a broad bony ridge, a curious feature also carried by a significant number of Cro-Magnons. But none of the alleged 'ancestors of us all' fossils from Africa have it, and it is extremely rare in modern people outside Europe." [pp 126-127]

2 posted on 03/03/2012 2:33:31 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; ...

 GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach
Thanks Renfield.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.


3 posted on 03/03/2012 2:34:56 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv
'was caused in part by a deficient diet -- one that lacked variety and was overly reliant on meat. '---LOL says the Inuit
4 posted on 03/03/2012 2:41:46 PM PST by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: SunkenCiv

Lack of giant toothbrushes at scene indicates they might have perished of gum disease.


5 posted on 03/03/2012 3:00:03 PM PST by Winstons Julia (Hello OWS? We don't need a revolution like China's; China needs a revolution like OURS.)
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To: SunkenCiv

So maybe they died out for lack of flossing?


6 posted on 03/03/2012 3:00:03 PM PST by El Sordo (The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.)
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To: SunkenCiv

Wow.....food still stuck on the teeth after 40,000 years.....no wonder the dental hygienist about yanks my teeth out when she’s cleaning them.


7 posted on 03/03/2012 3:04:35 PM PST by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: SunkenCiv

I sort of figured they ate something besides homo sapiens.


8 posted on 03/03/2012 3:07:39 PM PST by pallis
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To: SunkenCiv

guess they’ll have to rename “Caveman (Primal) diet.”


9 posted on 03/03/2012 4:18:35 PM PST by GOP Poet
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To: SunkenCiv

Had this been AGW caliber research, the article would have concluded that the starches killed the Neanderthals.


10 posted on 03/03/2012 5:17:07 PM PST by clearcarbon
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To: pallis
Tens of millions have been killed over notions of genetic superiority within Homo sapiens. With Neanderthals, there WAS a genetic difference. Explanation enough AFAIC.
11 posted on 03/03/2012 5:22:29 PM PST by dirtboy
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To: El Sordo

The Neanderthal government provided free contraceptives. They died out for lack of offspring.


12 posted on 03/03/2012 6:24:43 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: Verginius Rufus; SunkenCiv
The Neanderthal government provided free contraceptives. They died out for lack of offspring.

What a ridiculous postulate!

They were a deeply religious people, as evidenced by the many ritualistic elements they left behind.

They all converted to Shakerism, abstained from sexual relations, and died out for lack of offspring.

13 posted on 03/03/2012 7:41:34 PM PST by ApplegateRanch (If any of their "Alternatives" actually works, the Greenies will proceed to kill it.)
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To: Theoria

The only reasonable explanation for a people that survived approximately 200,000 years or more to have gone extinct after cromagnon showed up is that the Cromags killed them off, some interbreeding some slaughter, it is the Homo Sapien way.


14 posted on 03/03/2012 10:45:00 PM PST by calex59
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To: SunkenCiv
Errata:

The Science and Art of Neandertal Teeth [Slide Show]

15 posted on 03/03/2012 11:45:45 PM PST by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: calex59
The only reasonable explanation for a people that survived approximately 200,000 years or more to have gone extinct after cromagnon showed up is that the Cromags killed them off, some interbreeding some slaughter, it is the Homo Sapien way.

Neanderthals were killed off in a neolithic world war which probably lasted several generations, but not thousands or tens of thousands of years. Neanderthals were Europe's apex predator; the main body of them in Europe ate a diet which was over 90% meat including themselves and any other hominids or humans they could catch. Their DNA was roughly halfway between ours and that of a modern ape, their skulls were those of apes with huge eyes for nocturnal hunting, they had the same 6" fur coat as every other ice age animal which is why no needles have ever been found with Neanderthal remains, and this is what they looked like:


Image courtesy of www.themandus.org

Danny Vendramini on youtyube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZbmywzGAVs

No living human is related to Neanderthals in any way and the reason for that should be fairly obvious...

16 posted on 03/04/2012 5:58:11 AM PST by varmintman
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To: pallis

17 posted on 03/04/2012 5:58:19 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: varmintman

There is no evidence that Neanderthals had fur or looked as the picture you posted looks. In fact they stood upright, made tools and lived hundreds of thousands of years before dying out. They have been classified as human, with Human DNA, slightly different than ours. If they were furred that would be evident in their remains. It isn’t. There are Humans on this planet now that share some Neanderthal DNA. I am sure there would have been no mating between them if they looked like the ape you have posted.


18 posted on 03/04/2012 6:35:12 AM PST by calex59
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To: calex59
They have been classified as human, with Human DNA, slightly different than ours.

It pays to keep up:

Comparisons with the DNA of modern humans and of apes showed the Neanderthal was about halfway between a modern human and a chimpanzee.

19 posted on 03/04/2012 6:39:45 AM PST by varmintman
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To: Theoria

Thanks Theoria!

Article (no erratum):
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=science-art-neandertal-teeth


20 posted on 03/04/2012 6:50:05 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: varmintman; calex59; dirtboy

That “halfway between man and chimp” claim is complete BS, and appeared in just one — non-scientific — source, a tabloid in India.

It pays to keep up.


21 posted on 03/04/2012 6:54:17 AM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/314/5802/1113.short

"Several lines of evidence indicate that the 65,250 base pairs of hominid sequence so far identified in the library are of Neanderthal origin, the strongest being the ascertainment of sequence identities between Neanderthal and chimpanzee at sites where the human genomic sequence is different...."

22 posted on 03/04/2012 7:12:55 AM PST by varmintman
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To: All
The first thing Vendramini noticed seems to be the fact that Neanderthal skulls are very good fits for ape profiles and very bad fits for ours:


Image courtesy of www.themandus.org

23 posted on 03/04/2012 7:15:39 AM PST by varmintman
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To: varmintman
Make up your mind. The article you linked to in order to support your position that Neanderthals looked like apes also says "Neanderthals looked like human beings, had large brains, stood erect and used tools".
24 posted on 03/04/2012 7:21:16 AM PST by PapaBear3625 (In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. - George Orwell)
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To: PapaBear3625

Most scholars prior to now have assumed neanderthals looked more or less like us while at the same time recognizing that their DNA was substantially different. Danny Vendramini appears to have resolved the misconception.


25 posted on 03/04/2012 7:27:55 AM PST by varmintman
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To: varmintman

Horse Sh**. You might start reading real science instead of BS science. Half way makes no sense, since Chimps share 98.5% of Human DNA, what would half way be between 98.5 and 100%? 99%? 99.5?


26 posted on 03/04/2012 9:12:49 AM PST by calex59
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To: calex59

Put it this way: There is about twice as much difference between chimps and us as there is between chimps and Neanderthals.


27 posted on 03/04/2012 9:18:35 AM PST by varmintman
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To: calex59
There are several earlier hominid species which predate the first Neanderthals. The earliest go back to about 2 million years ago--Homo rudolfensis and Homo ergaster, then Homo erectus and Homo heidelbergensis, followed by Homo steinhelmensis (c. 350,000-180,000 B.C. or B.P. [Before Present]), then Homo Neanderthalensis starting around 180,000 B.P. The later Neanderthals from about 90,000 to about 27,000 years ago are called the "classic" Neanderthals (despite not knowing a word of Latin or Greek).

In brain size Neanderthals were comparable to modern humans or even slightly larger--the Neanderthals ranged from 1300 to 1700 milliliters whereas modern humans range from 1200 to 1400.

There is a recent scholarly (but very readable) book on the Neanderthals, originally published in German in 2005, English translation 2009: The Neanderthals, by Friedemann Schrenk and Stephanie Mu+ller, translated by Phyllis G. Jestice, published by Routledge (paperback ISBN 978-0-415-42420-9). No National Geographic-style color photos but lots of interesting black-and-white drawings and maps--a very interesting book with up-to-date information.

The Neander Valley, by the way, is named for Joachim Neumann, a Bremen theologian and hymn-writer of the 17th century (composer of "Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of Creation"). Neumann means "new man" and "Neander" was coined from the Greek roots neo- and andr- meaning "new man."

28 posted on 03/04/2012 11:31:30 AM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: Verginius Rufus

“Neanderthal” means Neander Valley auf Deutsch... Basically just a place name.


29 posted on 03/04/2012 3:28:44 PM PST by varmintman
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To: varmintman
Yes, thal (modern spelling tal) just means "valley"--it's cognate with the English word "dale." (German t often corresponds to English d as in Tochter/daughter, tot/dead, treiben/drive, Tag/day, Tat/deed, taub/deaf, etc.).

I was just surprised to learn that the name was fairly recent and its origin was known--many European placenames are so old that nothing is known of how the name originated.

30 posted on 03/04/2012 5:08:18 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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