Human Brain And The Human Body 's Needs For Proper Nourishment

1772 Words Dec 16th, 2016 8 Pages
What made us human? What changed us so drastically compared to our closest relatives, the chimpanzees? The simple answer is that our brain changed us. But it is how the brain evolved to be so different from all other animal brains that is so extraordinary. The human brain continued to evolve and grow throughout our evolutionary phases. This drastic increase in brain size did not come from chance, adaptations and changes in how and what hominins consumed were leading causes in hominin brain growth.
The increase in human brain size is attributed to multiple factors, but the implementation of cooking and tool use are at the forefront. Decreasing tooth and gut size, evidence of tool use on fossils, and the human body’s needs for proper nourishment are all factors that lead to the increase in human brain size.
The diets of bipedal hominins were the greatest factor to their growing brain size. Specifically, when cooking was introduced to hominin diets. The introduction of cooking freed up energy that was formally used in digestion to be used for brain use and development. There is further evidence for this due to the decreasing size of hominin guts throughout evolution (Adler, 2013)
Cooking decreased the energy needs of our digestive systems allowing our brains to increase its caloric intake (Adler, 2013). The process of cooking begins the breaking down of tough and fibrous foods, this allows for our digestion systems to use less energy than primates whose diets consists of raw…

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