Early Humans Loved to Eat Brains: Study

Diet of antelope brains may have helped human evolution
By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff
Posted May 4, 2013 4:35 PM CDT
Early Humans Loved to Eat Brains: Study
An H. erectus complete skull discovered in 2000 near lake Turkana in Kenya.   (AP Photo/Karel Prinsloo)

Our evolutionary ancestors were hungry for braaaiiins—antelope brains, that is. Sets of animal bones recently unearthed in Kenya, believed to be the earliest evidence of hominid hunting, show previous members of the human family enjoyed digging into the heads of antelope and wildebeests, as well as snacking on gazelle meat, Science News reports. They knew a thing or two about butchery, too, cutting the animals into parts before selecting the meatiest bones.

Scientists have also found a disproportionate number of animal skulls in the area, suggesting our ancestors scavenged the untouched heads from carcasses left behind by big cats after their own meals. Dents inside the skulls indicate they dug in with stones to get at the delicious, juicy brains inside. According to a study of the findings, this nutrient-rich brain tissue may have helped Homo erectus support larger bodies, bigger brains, and travel longer distances. (More archaeology stories.)

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