According to researchers, these foods are an important part of stimulating evolution Brain The Neanderthals got bigger.
“We think we are looking at evidence for the most primitive behavior that may be part of the encephalization or development of the human brain,” said Christina Warrenner, an anthropologist at Harvard University. United States Quoted from Smithsonian, Friday (21/5/2021).
“This is evidence that early humans could use new food sources in the form of roots, vegetables and whole grains,” he added.
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These ancient human mouths were full of bacteria, and when the bacteria that cause plaque on the teeth develop severe tartar or calculus, scientists can read this material.
That mineralized dental plaque lasts for thousands of years and provides a record of which bacteria make tartar Fossil teeth Ancient.
To find out what food was eaten by early humans, researchers compare toothpaste with DNA from Neanderthal bacteria to modern humans, chimpanzees, gorillas and Howler monkeys.
The study of carbohydrate foods consumed by ancient Neanderthals was published in the journal Processes of the National Academy of Sciences.
As a result, the researchers found ten types of bacteria in the collected bacterial DNA samples.
However there is one type of bacteria that is commonly found only on the teeth of humans and Neanderthals, viz Streptococcus. Bacteria It is involved in converting dough into sugar.
Researchers have found this all over the teeth of humans and Neanderthals, claiming that flour is a big part of their diet.
“Food “Rich in flour and sugar, it allows larger, more developed brains than us hominids,” said James Fellows Yates, a molecular anthropologist at the Max Planck Institute.
The discovery of streptococcus bacteria in the mouths of early humans and Neanderthals suggests that cooking may be more common than long before the advent of agriculture, even more than previously thought.
This is because Streptococcus relies on an enzyme called amylase to break down dough into sugar, and this enzyme works best on cooked flour.
Also, researchers say that knowing the oral bacteria that our ancestors possessed will help us to take better care of our mouths.
“I think this is a very exciting opportunity in microbiology to understand the bacteria that were in our mouths during the evolution of more than 40 million. They may be important for understanding oral and dental health,” Warren said.