People had used plant food has at least 120 thousand years ago. To such conclusion the international group of scientists after studying the remnants of food from the foci, preserved in a cave at the mouth of the river Close in southern Africa. The study is published in
“We found that these small ash spots (diameter about 30 cm) has been used for cooking. Rhizomes, and tubers rich in starch, were part of the diet of people who lived 120 000- 65 000 years ago,” said Cynthia, Larbi, Professor of archaeology from Cambridge University. According to him, despite the fact that have changed the technology of stone tools and the hunting strategy, people continued to cook roots and tubers.
“It is awesome. According to the genetic and anthropological data previously, you could assume that early humans ate starchy foods but it’s not studied,” – said Cynthia Larbi. According to scientists, this may be due to the duplication of the human genes responsible for starch digestion – they have become essential for survival.
Thus, the “early people followed a balanced diet, they wisely used the environment to obtain appropriate food or possibly drugs,” said Professor Sarah Wurz of the University of wits in Johannesburg (South Africa).
Combining vegetarian food with protein and fats from shellfish, fish, small and large animals, humans are optimally adapted to the environmental conditions. It speaks about their high “ecological intelligence”.
The mouth of the river Clasic known to anthropologists for many years, there have been excavated a few Paleolithic sites where were found fragments of a human skull age of 120 thousand years. According to Wurz, who lived at the time, looked like modern people today. However, their physique was a little tight.
Recently scientists have found that Neanderthals and the ancestors of modern humans split into separate species much earlier than scientists believed. According to a new study at University College London, the last common ancestors of the two species lived about 800,000 years ago and not 300 – 500 thousand years ago, as previously thought. Experts examined the teeth of hominids from the Spanish “Cave of bones”, which are considered the forerunners of the Neanderthals, and found that they are different from the rest of Homo sapiens.