PROF. PASCAL GAGNEUX
The course will explore the evolution of the human diet.
"You are what you eat" is true in many more ways than most of us can imagine. The class will explore the vast variety of primate diets and examine how one primate, Homo sapiens, became an obligate cucinivore (cooked food eater). Cooking is a distinctly human technology. Via its many different styles, cooking forms a defining part of human cultures, and has left profound imprints on our biology. We do not know when exactly our ancestors started cooking. We have slightly better information on when our ancestors began to rely on meat via scavenging and hunting, while also finding many important calories, vitamins, and minerals in a wide range of plant, fungal, and animal foods, across increasingly diverse ecological systems.