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Playing with Food

What to eat amid the sounds of caterpillars munching?

Eat

Illustration Credit: Peekaboo by Cindy and Kirby Pringle, Dogtown Artworks

I woke up to the sound of caterpillars munching. No, I can’t hear them, but some plants can. That was proven earlier this year, and now I imagine being rooted, unable to run or hide, hearing the voracious clack, clack, clack of approaching mandibles. What to do? Secrete mustard oil to drive off the fearsome predators. Maybe only lose a few leaves.And then there’s the sea squirt, that poster child for what’s called retrogressive metamorphosis. What that means is that the larvae of the sea squirt swim around—clearly an animal—but then they attach themselves to a rock and devolve into something a (very) hungry vegan might ethically munch. People inadvertently experiment with retrogressive metamorphosis when they strictly adhere to raw food diets. Why? Richard Wrangham’s great book, Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human, explains that cooking gave humans the evolutionary edge over other primates. Cooking allows us to utilize a lot more calories in a lot less time than eating raw. Cooking is what fuels our big brains. Eating strictly raw foods means flushing a large percentage of one’s calories down …

Stephen Kiesling is a former Olympic rower, cocreator of the Nike Cross Training System, and editor at large of Spirituality & Health. A 35th anniversary edition of The Shell Game: Reflections on Rowing and the Pursuit of Excellence has just been published.


This entry is tagged with:
NutritionVegetarianismDiet

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