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At what point did humans become susceptible?

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Think about it, we human beings were once accustomed to living in the wild. We gathered food from plants, caught fish, and killed animals to eat. We drank from springs, rivers, and streams. We had crude instruments in which to carry food and to keep water. We eventually had the luxury of fire, but often did not have a fire? So how did human beings survive under such circumstances?

Some scientists and anthropologists may tell you that they didn’t live very long, and perhaps the infant mortality rate was high. Yet, still, human beings survived squatting on stumps or the bare ground, dining on natural foods in most unclean circumstances.

Now, today’s story from National Geographic talks about the effect from eating food that has been dropped on the floor. There is a notion that if you pick it up in five seconds or less, you can eat it without harm. Then again, new evidence suggests that once food hits the floor, contamination is so great that you should forget about eating it.

Look, I am naturally squeamish. I don’t have a pet because dogs, for instance, lick themselves and others, they sniff the private parts, and sniff theirs and others deposits. What makes humans believe that a dog’s kiss by the tongue is completely adorable? Not for me.

My shoes have been where dogs have also been, and therefore, my food and I don’t belong on the carpet or floor.

As preppers, we must plan for disastrous conditions. To what extent are humans capable of withstanding an onslaught of contamination and a dramatic change from civilized living to living the way of our ancient ancestors? Survival television shows may give to us confidence that we don’t need shoes and can shed our clothing, but that just doesn’t jive, do you think?

Water as a for instance

“Modern humans (Homo sapiens) have dwelled on this earth for some 200 000 years, most of that time as hunter-gatherers and gradually growing in number. Approximately 50 000 years ago modern man began to inhabit every corner of the world and people were constantly on the move. Occasionally people were troubled by pathogens transmitted by contaminated water, but the general aversion for water that tasted revolting, stank and that looked disgusting must have developed quite early during the biological and cultural evolution of humankind. It has been postulated that the waterborne health risks of hunter-gatherers were small.
Archaeological and written sources concerning water and sanitation can, however, only be found from relatively recent times. Thus, in reconstructing the history of water and sanitation of this hunter-gatherer phase, we have to rely on the analogies of later societies. Modern anthropological studies and recorded mythologies of indigenous peoples play an important role in these analogies while observing primates and other more evolved mammals can also give us useful information.

Some 10 000 years ago, when people adopted an agrarian way of life, mankind established permanent settlements. This new type of livelihood spread everywhere and the population began to expand faster than ever before. Sedentary agricultural life made it possible to construct villages, cities and eventually states, all of which were highly dependent on water. This created a brand new relation between humans and water. Pathogens transmitted by contaminated water became a very serious health risk for the sedentary agriculturists. In this world guaranteeing pure water for people became a prerequisite for successful urbanization and state formation.”

http://www.iwawaterwiki.org/xwiki/bin/view/Articles/-ABRIEFHISTORYOFWATERANDHEALTHFROMANCIENTCIVILIZATIONSTOMODERNTIMES

“Scientists Study What to Do If You Drop a Cookie on the Floor
The five-second rule: New study says it's safe to eat food that's been on the floor … or is it?

Is this delicious bologna sandwich contaminated with bacteria?
PHOTOGRAPH BY BECKY HALE, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
Sarah Whitman-Salkin
for National Geographic
PUBLISHED MARCH 15, 2014

Once again, you've dropped your snack. You bend down, snatch it up, and gently blow off any dust—and, you hope, deadly germs. You're about to put it in your mouth because, after all, you've got the "five-second rule" on your side: Food that's been dropped is safe to consume if it's been on the floor for five seconds or less.

But really, should you eat it? Is the piece of toast or the potato chip or the cookie you just rescued from the ground safe to eat, or contaminated by bacteria? Science says ... maybe.
Researchers at Aston University in Birmingham, England, now suggest that the five-second rule is indeed true.

But a 2007 study of the five-second rule from Clemson University in South Carolina argues that there is no safe window for dropped food. Their data points to a "zero-second rule."
Here's the strange thing: Both the Aston study and the Clemson study used nearly identical methods of investigation, and ultimately had the same results—but with staggeringly different conclusions. So is the five-second rule legit or not?”

Read the rest at the link.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/03/140315-five-second-rule-bacteria-food-safety

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