The western diet and lifestyle and diseases of civilization

  • Carrera-Bastos P
  • Fontes
  • O'Keefe
  • et al.
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Abstract: It is increasingly recognized that certain fundamental changes in diet and lifestyle that occurred after the Neolithic Revolution, and especially after the Industrial Revolution and the Modern Age, are too recent, on an evolutionary time scale, for the human genome to have completely adapted. This mismatch between our ancient physiology and the western diet and lifestyle underlies many so-called diseases of civilization, including coronary heart disease, obesity, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, epithelial cell cancers, autoimmune disease, and osteopo- rosis, which are rare or virtually absent in hunter–gatherers and other non-westernized popula- tions. It is therefore proposed that the adoption of diet and lifestyle that mimic the beneficial characteristics of the preagricultural environment is an effective strategy to reduce the risk of chronic degenerative diseases




Carrera-Bastos, P., Fontes, O’Keefe, Lindeberg, & Cordain. (2011). The western diet and lifestyle and diseases of civilization. Research Reports in Clinical Cardiology, 15.

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