B2 High-Intermediate US 139 Folder Collection
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- [Narrator] Did you know that cannibalism used
to be a popular medical remedy?
That's right, in the 17th century, well before Advil,
Europeans would ingest ground up mummies for headaches.
And human fat, blood, and bone were used to treat everything
from gout to nosebleeds, yet cannibalism is largely absent
and morally frowned upon today.
But let's forget the social quagmire.
There are plenty of reasons
why you shouldn't eat people these days.
For starters, we now know that human meat
is a surprisingly low source of calories
compared to other red meats.
According to one study, human muscle contains
about 1,300 calories per kilogram.
That's less than beef, and nothing compared
to bear and boar meat.
Now you might think this would actually make human burgers
a great low cal alternative,
until you remember you're probably trying to eat humans
because you're starving to death.
So low cal is the opposite of what you want,
plus it's not worth taking the risk if you could help it.
It turns out we carry some pretty nasty diseases
that make 24-hour food poisoning look like the sniffles.
Eat someone raw, and you risk contracting
any bloodborne diseases they carry.
But even if you cook the meat,
it still won't always go so well for you.
Case in point are the Fore people of Papua New Guinea.
The would eat the body and brain
of the deceased family members out of cultural tradition.
But that practice stopped after hundreds of people died
in the 1950s and '60s from an otherwise
rare neurological disorder which they contracted
from eating infected human brains.
The brain tissue contained prions, deadly misfolded proteins
that form spongy holes in your brain.
They survive the cooking process and, if eaten,
are highly contagious.
On the legal side of things,
cannibalism falls into a gray area.
Oddly enough, cannibalism itself isn't illegal
in the US or UK, but you probably committed some crime
along the way to get that slab of meat,
grave robbing, desecration of a corpse,
murder and maybe all of the above.
One exception that won't put you behind bars
is if you eat yourself.
Yep, that's a thing.
It's called autocannibalism.
The most common example today, called placentophagy,
is when a woman eats her placenta after giving birth.
The idea is that it could raise energy levels
and reduce the risk of postpartum depression
by stabilizing hormones,
but the science is still out
on whether there's any real benefit.
Regardless, this ancient practice
has recently found new life in Western culture.
Kim Kardashian and Alicia Silverstone
have reportedly done it.
And there are numerous US companies
that will grind your placenta into a powder
so you could take it like any other vitamin supplement,
but the CDC warns that even this cutting edge form
of cannibalism is a bad idea
because it could transfer a harmful bacteria
from mother to child.
So if you have a hankering for human,
maybe try some pork instead.
After all, that's what we taste like.
Oh, wait, wait, I mean according to cannibals.
What do you wanna know about nutrition?
Leave a comment.
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Is Eating Humans Actually Unhealthy?

139 Folder Collection
Mayu Okuuchi published on January 7, 2020
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