First of all, this is not the second book of the Hunger Games Trilogy. However, that’s a pretty good read too.  Richard Wrangham’s book ”Catching Fire” is a fascinating look at evolutionary biology of early human ancestors, especially focusing  on their diet from raw to cooked foods, then some insights of the dangers of the modern diet of highly processed foods.

Richard Wrangham, renowned primatologist, argues that our evolutionary success is the result of cooking. Once our hominid ancestors starting cooking 1-2 million years ago, the digestive system shrank and the brain grew. This occurred because cooking jump started the digestive process enabling a larger percentage of nutrients and calories to be absorbed, so less food needed to be consumed. Calories were diverted from performing digestive activities to other bodily functions, including the nervous system and brain functions. Eating less allowed more time for other activities – hunting, making tools, building shelters, etc.

He cites some interesting research on the negative effects of raw diets. People who eat only raw foods tend to have several health problems, plus have difficulty maintaining a healthy weight. He discusses one very interesting experience with snakes. Four groups were fed the same food, but prepared it different ways (the whole rat, the chopped raw meat, the cooked meat, and the ground cooked meat). The group eating the ground cooked meat grew larger and stronger relative to the other groups although the food ingredients were identical.

It’s a fun read, doesn’t take too long, and provides some great context to understanding early man’s diet.

While not the second book of the Hunger Games, still a very good read.

Workout of the Day
Shoulder Press
Find your 1 rep max.
1-1-1-1-1
then
Push Press
Find your 1 rep max.
1-1-1-1-1
then
Push Jerk
Find your 1 rep max.
1-1-1-1-1

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