Neolithic Lifestyles

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As time wears on, everyday lifestyles of peoples around the world evolve and adapt. Mankind has encountered countless changes, one of the biggest being the switch from hunting and gathering to domestication and agriculture as methods of survival. This period of history is referred to as the agricultural revolution. One lifestyle overall surpassing the other is a highly argued upon topic. However, due to a greater diversity of foods available for consumption, a mobile lifestyle, and relative freedom from epidemic diseases that come from larger populations, hunting and gathering bands comparatively enjoyed a standard of living far superior to that of a Neolithic village dweller. Each group of people had extremely differing diets. While the hunters and gatherers scavenged daily for foods such as roots, berries, meat, and nuts, Neolithic villagers ate more carb-rich foods such as potatoes and corn. The diet of a…show more content…
The stationary position of Neolithic villagers limits them to eating only the foods within a reasonable distance of their permanent settlements. Diet played a key role in determining health of ancient peoples, as is evident in the skeletons examined by paleopathologists worldwide. In Greece and Turkey, hunter gatherer skeletons from the end of the ice ages show that the average height of a capacious 5’9” for men and 5’5” for woman. With the onset of agriculture, however, height plummeted and reached a low of only 5’3” for men and a mere 5’ for women. Skeletons excavated in the Ohio and Illinois river valleys show extreme health changes from pre to post agricultural lifestyles. Skeletons of farmers show an increase in enamel defects caused by malnutrition, bone lesions caused by infectious diseases, and degenerative spinal conditions caused by intensive physical labor. The balanced and conglomerate diet when paired with the mobile lifestyle of hunter gatherers far exceeds that of Neolithic village
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