I visited Mesa Verde this summer and they had a blurb on one of the exhibits that the Life Expectation went down when the natives started farming. I wasn't sure if it was true or just a political statement.
Just common sense says that it would go up because you wouldn't stop hunting and gathering in addition to farming. I mean, I farm but I still go to the grocery store.
The only thing I could come up with is that they were then stationary and their enemies knew where to find them.
posted on 08/15/2007 5:11:24 PM PDT
Another explanation is that grains like corn are not "complete" proteins and lack some amino acids, etc.... so people that discovered how useful corn is would have an abundant and fairly reliable food supply to keep bellies full and boost the birthrate, but over the long term their bodies were subjected to the effects of malnutrition. Corn was an awesome crop but without beans or a lot of meat to complete it- it has a hidden bad side. People in the Americas were very healthy until its discovery but in its heyday they started showing serious dental abcesses and other diseases due to malnutrition even as their population and civilizations arose. Not to mention the stationary settled life- as opposed to the hunter gatherer life- was an open invitation to communicable disease.
posted on 01/17/2013 1:35:39 AM PST
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