Specific food gave humans their big fancy brains: study

Specific food gave humans their big fancy brains: study

A new study by New York University researchers has shed light on why our ancient predecessors grow larger as well as more complex brains than their primate ancestors.

Scientists believe that humans evolved from primates, but despite the fact that primates still exist, humans are actually a different branch on the same family tree.

Led by NY University doctoral candidate Alex DeCasien, researchers studied and compared the brain sizes as well as dietary habits of more than 140 different species of primates, and found that a specific food might have given us humans big fancy brains.

After a deep study of diets of monkeys, apes, lemurs, and other animals, they found that diets including fruit were directly linked to higher mass of brains.

Sharing their findings, DeCasien said, “If you are foraging on harder-to-access food, like fruit instead of leaves, then you need to have all the cognitive strategies to deal with that.”

The newly published study report concluded that animals living on diets including fruits have approximately 25 per cent more brain tissue than their peers.


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