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(Bubblews)   The Mesolithic was a brutal period, when people didn't live past 30 and life was dominated by relentless hunting and gathering. But, apparently, they had very nice teeth   (bubblews.com) divider line 36
    More: Interesting, Mesolithic, Ancient DNA, University of Adelaide, orbital period, number of species, teeth  
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4586 clicks; posted to Main » on 19 Feb 2013 at 9:24 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



36 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-02-19 08:28:37 AM  
No refined sugar.
 
2013-02-19 09:09:14 AM  
Nature, red in healthy tooth and claw.
 
2013-02-19 09:15:09 AM  
And everyone had GEICO insurance.
 
2013-02-19 09:26:23 AM  
As I understand it the thing that transforms a culture into needing dental insurance as a whole is when they introduce corn into their diet.
 
2013-02-19 09:28:22 AM  
Reminds me of when I was a little kid, coming home and regaling my dad of the school day's highlights, specifically a dental nurse (or somebody) coming in and telling us about dental care. And how the Native Americans had very clean, white teeth because they didn't eat sugar.

My dad, a cola addict and life-long curmudgeon, snarled "Yeah, and they only lived to be 30 years old!"
 
2013-02-19 09:28:47 AM  
My neighbour stinks to high heaven, but he has nice teeth

/is he a caveman?
 
2013-02-19 09:29:26 AM  

UberDave: And everyone had GEICO insurance.


i50.tinypic.com
 
2013-02-19 09:29:33 AM  
Meh. Nothing worthwhile happens after 30, anyway.

/Wish I had died at 30.
 
2013-02-19 09:32:06 AM  

UberDave: And everyone had GEICO insurance.


That's why neanderthals are extinct. After a thousand years of listening to constant Geico commercials early humans had enough and exterminated them.
 
2013-02-19 09:33:28 AM  

basemetal: No refined sugar.


Well, that takes care of this thread.
We can all go home now.
 
2013-02-19 09:38:00 AM  

Rev. Skarekroe: basemetal: No refined sugar.

Well, that takes care of this thread.
We can all go home now.


Well, we could also talk about colas with phosphoric acid in them, or the uncolas and sports drinks with lots of citric acid in them, and the lazy fat people that basically never stop eating and don't care for themselves.....
 
2013-02-19 09:46:50 AM  
FTA: The study, conducted by Dr Christina Adler of the Australian Center for Ancient DNA, University of Adelaide, looked at the skeletal remains of 34 Europeans and found that their teeth were remarkably free of cavities and retained much more of the vital dental plaque which protects teeth from harmful bacteria and decay.


Looking at the actual journal article, the major shift between pre-modern and modern bacteria cultures was that in pre-modern samples there was a lot of "unclassified" bacteria (see figure 1 of http://www.nature.com/ng/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/ng.2536.html), while in modern samples there were almost no unclassified bacteria. Despite this, they concluded:

The composition of oral microbiota remained unexpectedly constant between Neolithic and medieval times, after which (the now ubiquitous) cariogenic bacteria became dominant, apparently during the Industrial Revolution.

Not saying they got it wrong, and I'm certainly no microbiologist, but I've got to wonder:
A) What's going on with the unclassified bacteria?
B) Their pre-modern sample included (I believe) only the ones who survived to adulthood. A serious infection during childhood would have a higher chance of killing a child in pre-modern times, especially when child mortality was so high (in the 1600's, 2/3 of children died before the age of 4 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_expectancy).
C) I don't know if different bacterial samples have different rates of preservation, but it might not be unreasonable to assume that they're not all the same, and that bacteria known for creating acidic environments might not last as long or be as well-preserved as other bacteria.
 
2013-02-19 09:59:09 AM  

basemetal: No refined sugar.


No betel nut either, it seems.
 
2013-02-19 10:02:16 AM  
Well, for the ones who lived that long sure. But having tooth problems could be fatal in those days. I DRTFA but I imagine there's some selection bias going on there.
 
2013-02-19 10:08:25 AM  
No fluoride
 
2013-02-19 10:10:10 AM  

Rev. Skarekroe: basemetal: No refined sugar.

Well, that takes care of this thread.
We can all go home now.


He's right though. I remember reading about Queen Elizabeth who was addicted to sugary pies and sweets. By the time she had reached her 40's most of her teeth had rotted out of her head. The fashion at the time was for ladies to take a dab of black makeup and smear it on their front teeth in emulation of their Queen.

One of the main reason that a lot of first nations people are so fat (and quite a few new East Asians) is the introduction of a western based sugar enriched (corn sugars, it's in everything you eat) diet. Want to know what heart disease and obesisty is caused by. IMHO, it's corn sugars and sugars in general. Too much, too soon for humans to adapt. Screw cholesterol and transfats. Your liver is converting sugars into cholestrol.
 
2013-02-19 10:38:02 AM  
whenever i go uber low carb, I find that my teeth, at the end of the day, feel like they did after brushing in the morning.
 
2013-02-19 10:43:17 AM  
it's not that they had a 30 year lifespan before the advent of the toothbrush.. its
just that so many things could 'get you' and infant mortality was high.  This causes the
average death age to be 30.
 
2013-02-19 10:50:20 AM  

mongbiohazard: Well, for the ones who lived that long sure. But having tooth problems could be fatal in those days. I DRTFA but I imagine there's some selection bias going on there.


And some dental care.  Gnawing on bones is great for your teeth.  That's more or less why we sell bones to give to your dogs, to let them improve their teeth.
 
2013-02-19 10:51:50 AM  

Nutsac_Jim: it's not that they had a 30 year lifespan before the advent of the toothbrush.. its
just that so many things could 'get you' and infant mortality was high.  This causes the
average death age to be 30.


We saw an article around here not too long ago pointing out the flip side of the high infant mortality rate meant you have three ages where death was like, infancy, peak warfare ages (between 12 to 20), and if you made it past those, you had just as good odds of hitting 100 as you do now.
 
2013-02-19 10:53:41 AM  

indarwinsshadow: Rev. Skarekroe: basemetal: No refined sugar.

Well, that takes care of this thread.
We can all go home now.

He's right though. I remember reading about Queen Elizabeth who was addicted to sugary pies and sweets. By the time she had reached her 40's most of her teeth had rotted out of her head. The fashion at the time was for ladies to take a dab of black makeup and smear it on their front teeth in emulation of their Queen.

One of the main reason that a lot of first nations people are so fat (and quite a few new East Asians) is the introduction of a western based sugar enriched (corn sugars, it's in everything you eat) diet. Want to know what heart disease and obesisty is caused by. IMHO, it's corn sugars and sugars in general. Too much, too soon for humans to adapt. Screw cholesterol and transfats. Your liver is converting sugars into cholestrol.


This lasted well through the Victorian age up to the Edwardian Age in Britain. Black teeth was a sign of wealth because it meant that you could afford lots of sugar, especially in your tea (which would also discolor teeth).
 
2013-02-19 10:54:43 AM  

doczoidberg: Meh. Nothing worthwhile happens after 30, anyway.

/Wish I had died at 30.


What's stopping you?
 
2013-02-19 11:36:31 AM  

Crewmannumber6: doczoidberg: Meh. Nothing worthwhile happens after 30, anyway.

/Wish I had died at 30.

What's stopping you?



Suicide is illegal. I'm not some common criminal!
 
2013-02-19 11:56:19 AM  
Dental decay appears with the introduction of processed grains.  The more grinding stones you find, the more holes in the teeth.  This is nothing new.
 
2013-02-19 12:08:23 PM  

doczoidberg: Suicide is illegal


Only if you suck at it
 
2013-02-19 12:10:51 PM  
That's one of the reasons why I swallow my corn whole.
 
2013-02-19 12:16:11 PM  

Molavian: That's one of the reasons why I swallow my corn whole.


You swallow cornhole?

Ewwwwwwwww....
 
2013-02-19 01:46:47 PM  

indarwinsshadow: One of the main reason that a lot of first nations people are so fat (and quite a few new East Asians) is the introduction of a western based sugar enriched (corn sugars, it's in everything you eat) diet.


Malnutrition only stopped being a problem, even in western societies, starting in the 1970s.

Basically, these cultures are getting fat because for the first time in their cultural history, everyone has access to enough food.
 
jvl
2013-02-19 03:03:19 PM  

basemetal: No refined sugar.


Nope.  The difference was the introduction of a high-carb diet resulting from farming.

And before you take any lessons from this, keep in mind that most of the bacteria in the Mesolithic Man's mouth are entirely absent from yours, so moving to a high-carb diet won't help you.  Also, recent evolution has strongly changed how we respond to carbs versus the Mesolithic (carbs are broken down more quickly by our saliva, resulting in carbs tasting much sweeter to us than to Mesolithic peoples)
 
2013-02-19 03:20:41 PM  

jvl: basemetal: No refined sugar.

Nope.  The difference was the introduction of a high-carb diet resulting from farming.

And before you take any lessons from this, keep in mind that most of the bacteria in the Mesolithic Man's mouth are entirely absent from yours, so moving to a high-carb diet won't help you.  Also, recent evolution has strongly changed how we respond to carbs versus the Mesolithic (carbs are broken down more quickly by our saliva, resulting in carbs tasting much sweeter to us than to Mesolithic peoples)


And those carbs from those refined grains are what?

/those bad bacteria were there, they were kept in check by the good bacteria, which thrived in the environment afforded by the unrefined diet of the time.  By the introduction of the carbs,  you shift the ph lower, which the good bacteria do not like and the bad bacteria do like which shifts the flora in the wrong direction.
 
jvl
2013-02-19 04:53:10 PM  

basemetal: And those carbs from those refined grains are what?


"Refined sugar" is not synonymous with "mush in a pot"
 
jvl
2013-02-19 04:54:36 PM  

basemetal: By the introduction of the carbs,  you shift the ph lower, which the good bacteria do not like and the bad bacteria do like which shifts the flora in the wrong direction.


Again, no.

The "good bacteria" in mesolithic mouths are extinct in modern humans.  There is nothing you can do to un-exctinct them.
 
2013-02-19 06:25:14 PM  

jvl: basemetal: By the introduction of the carbs,  you shift the ph lower, which the good bacteria do not like and the bad bacteria do like which shifts the flora in the wrong direction.

Again, no.

The "good bacteria" in mesolithic mouths are extinct in modern humans.  There is nothing you can do to un-exctinct them.


Do you even have an idea of how many different bacteria live in the mouth?
 
2013-02-19 06:28:30 PM  

basemetal: jvl: basemetal: By the introduction of the carbs,  you shift the ph lower, which the good bacteria do not like and the bad bacteria do like which shifts the flora in the wrong direction.

Again, no.

The "good bacteria" in mesolithic mouths are extinct in modern humans.  There is nothing you can do to un-exctinct them.

Do you even have an idea of how many different bacteria live in the mouth?


Or the enzymes in the mouth that start breaking down the mush in the pot into smaller sugars?

/doubt it
 
2013-02-19 07:32:00 PM  
This is pretty much one of the first things they teach you in anthropology class. If you managed to survive the first five years of your life then your odds were pretty good that you would live until your mid 60s to early 70s. People did not die of old age in their 30s.
 
2013-02-21 09:55:03 AM  

Ghastly: This is pretty much one of the first things they teach you in anthropology class. If you managed to survive the first five years of your life then your odds were pretty good that you would live until your mid 60s to early 70s. People did not die of old age in their 30s.


They didn't die "of old age". No one dies "of old age". Old age just makes several causes of death more and more likely.

They used to die of disease, infections, injuries (a leading cause of death among colonial women was being burned to death when their long dresses brushed the cooking fire), homicide (at rates 10-100 times the death-due-to-homicide rate of today), etc.

The odds of making it to age 60 for a 30 year-old today are much, much higher than they were for a 30 year-old a hundred years ago, and this trend hasn't really stopped in modern times. Part of the reason we're having a social security crisis is the fact that people age 65 are living 19 years today, compared to 14 years in the 1940's.
 
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