Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bread Was Around 30,000 Years Ago?

This is bread, very broadly defined.

"The findings, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal on Monday, indicate that Palaeolithic Europeans ground down plant roots similar to potatoes to make flour, which was later whisked into dough."

So gnocchi is Paleo? Sweet. (At least potato gnocchi, anyway.*)

This is kind of a dopey article, actually:

"The findings may also upset fans of the Paleolithic diet, which follows earlier research that assumes early humans ate a meat-centered diet."

I just listened to an interview with Loren Cordain, who said that people have probably been eating starchy tubers for a very long time. Robb Wolf and Stephan Guyenet have been making the same point for as long as I've been listening to and reading them.

So this more reflects the reporter's ignorance about the Paleo diet than a finding that reflects on the Paleo diet's validity.

"Fans" of the Paleo diet will likely not be upset at all.

But it's interesting. Thanks for sharing, Steve.

*Potatoes come from the New World, not Europe. They wouldn't have had potatoes 30,000 years ago in Europe. But it was a good line.

P.S.: Here's more info, with a complete list of the plants.  It's the sort of stuff you'd expect a hunter-gatherer to be eating.