Thursday, May 19, 2011

Origins of Health

Yesterday Dr. William Meller presented at the NW Campus meeting in conjunction with our the group, Minot Skeptical Society. We had more than 90 attending. A great meal and then the talk followed. Dr. Meller did an excellent job on explaining what evolutionary medicine is about to this crowd, which included the Dean of the UND Medical School, Chair of the Dept of Family Medicine UND and Chair of the Dept. of OB/GYN. Then the Q&A began with sharp questions from the physicians. One person did ask about with obesity/diet/diabetes a question about how people that eat fresh fruits and veges have lower blood sugars and loose weight. I did not speak up, as I did not want to take away from our guest Dr. Meller. However, I did just finish reading a great book that does answer this question called "Catching Fire, How Cooking Made Us Human" by Richard Wrangham. The book makes the point that cooking actually starts the breakdown or digestion of food. An experiment was run that shows raw food, animal or vegetable will end up in the terminal ileum only digested and absorbed by an average of 50%. Cooked food gets digested and absorbed to a much greater extent and only about 10% reaches the terminal ileum. So raw fruits do cause sugar and weight to drop, because a greater percentage of carbohydrate does not get digested and absorbed. The book also goes into that cooking affected our evolution and consequently we have smaller teeth, jaws and guts versus other primates of similar size who eat nothing but raw food. He goes so far as to speculate that cooking also affected our social interactions, language and development of culture and community. It is a very good book and if interested I would recommend that you get the book. So Happy Cooking!
Peace Skeptical DoDo

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