A typical misconception. In the 1960's or 70's, some frozen mummies were discovered that were on the order of 900 years old. Much to the surprise of the scientists, their lungs were in terrible shape. It seems that living in confined quarters with open fires and fat lamps does as much damage as smoking cigarettes, if not more. Add to this an average life expectancy similar to that of the poorest countries without steady proper nutrition, and basic health care and dentistry (more important than you might think) and you get the average lifespan in the cartoon. You also get exceptions like "Moses" and "Methuselah" whose 60-80 years get turned into the stuff of legend and grow with the telling.
On the other hand, in the past century or so we've seen traditional hunter-gatherers adopt "modern" diets produced by industrialized societies, and their health goes to hell. They develop tooth decay, bad bites, myopia, obesity, diabetes and heart disease at rates they didn't have before.
And who runs those societies?
Post a Comment