Gotta Love Them Clams!

Ever since I read a theory that it was seafood, not just an expanded grassy starches diet, which enabled the Homo Sapiens' brain to reach it's present (roughly 3 pound) size, I've been looking for research that supports it.

Well, here ya go.
For early humans, a beach party and clam bake

By Will Dunham Wed Oct 17, 5:23 PM ET

Artifacts found in a cave on coastal cliffs overlooking the Indian Ocean showed that these people 164,000 years ago cooked mussels and other shellfish, used red pigment perhaps as body paint and made small stone blades that could be used at the tip of a spear -- all far earlier than previously thought.


The world was in a glacial period from 195,000 to 125,000 years ago, with much of Africa in cold and dry conditions that may have prompted early humans to find new food sources and expand from inland to coastal habitats, the researchers said.

Marean said that the findings support the idea that on the far southern shore of Africa a small population of modern humans endured this glacial period by expanding their diet to include shellfish, harnessing new technologies, and by using symbolism in their social relations.

It may be that this was "the progenitor population" for all modern people, Marean said. Habitation of coastlines is of great interest to scientists wondering about the later spread of modern humans out of Africa.

[Beach Party, Baybee!!!

Funny thing is, I first read about the idea in a Scientific America article about the benefits of Omega 3 fatty acids. The authors point was that our ancestors' brain would never have gotten the appropriate nourishment for such growth as what occurred in the transition from Homo Erectus to Homo Sapiens if it weren't for an unexplored dietary source and the precise benefits which seem to be best derived from Omega 3s via Fish Oils. Grasses, the #1 source of equally important Omega 9 fatty acids (Omega 6 fatty acids are abundant in meat)* would not, according to the Sci Am article, have been enough on their own to encourage the kind and magnitude of growth which took place in the described time period.

Since that time, late July as I recall, I've started poppin' the ol' Fish Oil pills. Enteric coated, to keep away the Fish Burps, thank ya very much. {-; If you get a chance to find that issue, which I do believe was August '07, I recommend it highly.

This article isn't the first, but it is the most astounding supporting evidence for the Omega 3 theory I've found since I read the SciAm piece.

Now if I'd just get them clams an' fishes back in my diet...

* I'm ultra busy at work so just wanted to let y'all know that I may be mixin' up the O6 with the O9. I'll double check it when I get the time, and correct if necessary.


  1. that story must be wrong because my bible didn't mention it.

    seriously though, interesting stuff

  2. I'm sure teh Bible must've mentioned it at one point, Michael. Right before that big ol' editing thing that went down when (S)Paul first worked it over.


  3. I do love your sense of humor, MB. Saint Paul the Editor... heheheh.

    Seriously, though. Since you started popping fish oil caps, have you noticed yourself getting smarter? Forget where you left the car keys less often? As one who is continually challenged (okay, embarrassed) by forgetfulness, I'm genuinely curious. Fish burps aside.

    Also ... salmon is heavenly, grilled lightly with a little garlic, a pinch of salt and a sprinkle of pepper, and accompanied by a nice, crispy green salad. Only caveat: The salmon needs to be nice and fresh, or the smell will peel paint. Bon apetit!

  4. Mmmmmm..... seafood....

    Annoying that our bible (y'know, the unedited version, pre St. Paul) forbids us from touching shellfish. "Thou shall not eat shell", or somethin'.

    But hey, maybe those among us who do not abide that, are the smarter ones... :-)

    I betcha the original Pastafarians ate lots of seafood, being Pirates and all.

  5. ;-) Hey Wren, he was the only one in, the New Testament anyway, who actually wrote some of his own books, eh. (And who knows whose elses!) As far as the Old T goes, well, finally writing down stories in the forms in which they'd survived the Oral Tradition for so many 10s of Generations, I'm not sure anyone who thought about it for more than 2 seconds would really expect any kind of accuracy from 'em anyhow.

    Anyhow, you're absolutely right 'bout the Salmon needing to be fresh. I'll try again to like fish. If I don't like it, though, I just can not eat it. {sigh}

    Maybe, Nava? Maybe???


    And I can tells ya from my own times a'Time Travelin', that they did. And they Liked it! ARRRHHG!


  6. Oh yah! Hmmm... What did you ask me 'bout the Intelligence uptick with .. umm, that stuff?


    I'm hopin' it just takes longer than a couple months for those kind of effects, eh. It has helped with my general feelin' of well-being for sure though. I mean, my brain doesn't try quite so aggressively as it used to do, even when I'm slackin' on my exercisin'.

  7. "... brain doesn't try ... to kill me..."

    Hmmm. Yes. Not quite so hard, eh.



  8. My Christian schooling was wayyyyy back in the Dark Ages. The only thing I remember about Paul was that God shoved him off his horse and whammed him into being a believer. I guess that would do it.

    I'll try the fish oil, myself. Mr. Wren is taking it for his achy joints. Sounds like it's an all-around good thing, and I'm all for that.


Post a Comment

Popular Posts