1

votes

did our ancestors eat a ton of "roughage"?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 13, 2012 at 5:10 AM

I am just curious if our ancestors would have gathered and consumed lettuce and other various leavy greens with relish? Heaping them on a plate? Or was it a pained "ugh I wish I could have caught that fish but Im so darn hungry anything that wont kill me is gonna go in my belly" type of thing.

I am not trying to get into whether or not this is a good idea- I am just curious what you all think.

9ba98ff40c0c4045be98682fa3e4d819

(141)

on April 20, 2012
at 09:08 PM

But the "roughness" can be safely minimized by various forms of cooking or fermentation or anything else that "naturallY' breaks down the more inflammatory compounds in the plant. Anyone here know much about the digestibility of eggplant skin as opposed to the meat or pulp of the eggplant ? I just know that if I COOK it long enough to break down the outer skin, then maybe puree it, it seems pretty mild by that time. Am I off on a blind alley here ? Might it not be possible to reintegrate certain foods by separating the digestible from the indigestible by cooking it out ?

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 15, 2012
at 02:10 AM

We probably evolved eating more and more meat (cooked) with a baseline diet of high vegetable matter.

3b3a449b6705e9ec8b141d0bd07c1a64

(1489)

on April 13, 2012
at 07:53 AM

yeah seriously...i doubted they wouldve wasted too much time on veg as they reply minimal energy

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6 Answers

best answer

2
9ba98ff40c0c4045be98682fa3e4d819

on April 14, 2012
at 04:04 AM

Dandelion greens taste good. So do wild scallions. By the time cooking developed, I suspect that fibrous greens might have been integrated into the diet if only for taste enhancement and variety. Also mushrooms. Paleo man probably enjoyed soups and stews and broth when the time and opportunity to enjoy such luxury periodically occurred. Surely by the time cooking over fire was in general practice, there must have been a history of experimentation with various "wild" greens (as with nuts, berries and mushrooms).

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 15, 2012
at 02:10 AM

We probably evolved eating more and more meat (cooked) with a baseline diet of high vegetable matter.

6
1bbcd2122d9c75b07440f22ef57d6448

(2934)

on April 13, 2012
at 06:43 AM

Plant materials are surprisingly inefficient calorie sources in a paleolithic environment. The majority of the natural "flora-mass" is bark and leaves, neither of which are easily digestible by humans. Protein and fat (animals) were the preferred sources of energy, and tubers, fruits, berries, nuts and seeds would provide more nutrition than greens in a food-scarce situation.

That being said, there are certain types of monkeys who ingest certain leaves and plants for their medicinal properties, a habit that early humans may have also developed.

3
1096aa84d006fe967128ffbd37e8070e

(1002)

on April 13, 2012
at 01:05 PM

I know a guy who flies supplies into the backcountry of Alaska in the spring, as soon as the weather allows. He says out of all the goodies he brings, the first thing everyone goes for are the greens. I know they aren't paleolithic, but they have been surviving all winter on fresh and canned meats and dry goods. I think paleo man probably grazed throughout the day on fruits and vegs when they were around, and when he couldn't catch enough meat.

2
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on April 13, 2012
at 10:29 AM

Did we eat a ton of roughage? We aren't gorillas, and our digestive systems weren't designed to eat tons of it, but we do have an omnivore's digestive system, so plant matter likely was a significant part of our diet.

As pointed out by others, plant matter tends to be lower in calories than animal products. But there's obviously more to nutrition than calories. Plants, per calorie, have more nutrition than do meat products. But arguably, you can't easily eat the same number of calories of plants than you can of animals. Luckily, you don't need to eat a ton of plants to get a significant amount of nutrition.

1
11838116de44ae449df0563f09bd3d73

(655)

on April 13, 2012
at 01:32 PM

Many would have eaten substantial fiber from minimally processed vegetable matter. Some may have intentionally gathered greens. This practice probably varied widely.

0
C326acd0ae246a39c5685f2ba72e3136

on April 14, 2012
at 04:14 AM

I don't think so. All " roughage " does it scar the lining of the intestines which can lead to insufficient nutritional utilization. Think about it. Rub lard on your leg for minutes than rub greens and roughage? Roughage causes scarring and irritation. Imagine how this happens every day to your delicate intestines which are soft and smooth. I can't eat fiber. It just doesn't work. There is no point. Fat and animals is where it is at!!

9ba98ff40c0c4045be98682fa3e4d819

(141)

on April 20, 2012
at 09:08 PM

But the "roughness" can be safely minimized by various forms of cooking or fermentation or anything else that "naturallY' breaks down the more inflammatory compounds in the plant. Anyone here know much about the digestibility of eggplant skin as opposed to the meat or pulp of the eggplant ? I just know that if I COOK it long enough to break down the outer skin, then maybe puree it, it seems pretty mild by that time. Am I off on a blind alley here ? Might it not be possible to reintegrate certain foods by separating the digestible from the indigestible by cooking it out ?

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