Why Is This Tribe So Far From Civilization So Healthy

Why Is This Tribe So Far From Civilization So Healthy


This video was made possible by WIX. If you are ready to create a website, head
over to wix.com/go/infographics to try out one of their premium plans right now. Non-state, or stateless societies were the
norm in the past, and then with the rise of agricultural practices we got together and
formed societies and started to cooperate in larger groups than our tribe. And so began our civilization process, but
also with it, despotic leaders, human rights abuses and sometimes brutal laws. Homo-sapiens, once mostly nomadic hunter-gatherers,
banded together and created towns and cities and sometimes ineluctable hierarchies. This “Neolithic Revolution” made us more
sedentary, perhaps less prone to violence (that’s a hot-potato of a question) and
it had a huge impact on our health. But how do we in our cities compare to ‘wild’
people still living in tribes? Today we’ll explore this comparison, in
this episode of the Infographics Show, Why is this tribe so far from civilization so
healthy? First of all, we are going to focus on one
tribe as that’s where a lot of recent research has been done. We are by no means saying that being tribal
means having great health or that this one group of people and their health mirrors tribal
societies in say the Arctic, Amazon rainforest or the Sahara Desert. The Bushmen of southern Africa lead a very
different lifestyle from the most remote hilltribes of northern Thailand. Interestingly, though, you can find reports
of Kalahari Bushmen saying when modern life encroached onto their lifestyle the price
to pay was high – disease, booze and too many babies to young mothers, writes the BBC. The hilltribes of Thailand have also been
tested by modern consumerism, rife alcoholism and methamphetamine abuse. But let’s put that aside for now and go
across the world to Bolivia. A BBC article in 2017 said, “The healthiest
hearts in the world have been found in the Tsimane (chee-may-nay) people in the forests
of Bolivia.” So who are the Tsimane people? The BBC says they number around 16,000, but
other reports say the population is much smaller than that at around 2000-6000. They can be found in lowland Bolivia, and
live for the most part by subsistence farming. This means basically self-sufficiency farming
in which you produce enough for you and your family or group to eat and don’t create
enough for trade. The Tsimane also hunt and go fishing for their
meals. In recent years some of the Tsimane have been
farming and selling what they grew and also using cash. They speak Tsimane, which is what we call
a language isolate. This means it doesn’t come from other languages. But what’s interesting to us is their good
health. Let’s have a look at that. If we look at western countries we can see
that heart disease is often the number one killer. In the USA the Center for Disease Control
and Prevention puts it at the top just above cancer. The third spot, and way behind, was accidents. We don’t need to tell you that heart disease,
despite sometimes just running in the family, can often be prevented or stalled by having
a healthier diet, doing a bit of exercise and perhaps going easy on the cigarettes and
the 14-hour shifts with 30-minute lunch breaks at McDonalds. Scientists wanted to find out just how much
we might prevent this killer disease by changing our lifestyle. To do this they did the right thing and looked
at heart disease rates in the USA, looked at the lifestyle of many people in that country,
and then compared it to heart disease and lifestyle in the Tsimane groups. The introduction in the paper published by
The Lancet said, “To better understand the association between the pre-industrial lifestyle
and low prevalence of coronary artery disease risk factors, we examined the Tsimane, a Bolivian
population living a subsistence lifestyle of hunting, gathering, fishing, and farming
with few cardiovascular risk factors, but high infectious inflammatory burden.” What did the researchers find out? Well, after they took a number of flights
and even travelled by canoe to get to the Amazon they found that the Tsimane lifestyle
was indeed very different from your average American, Brit, Frenchman or Canadian. They found that 17 percent of the Tsimane
diet was wild game. This is a lot of meat. That mostly consisted of wild pig, tapir (looks
like a cross between a pig and baby elephant) and capybara (kinda like a giant Guinea pig). They were also partial to fish – about 7
percent of their diet – that came in form of catfish and piranha. To fill up, they ate rice, maize, something
similar to sweet potato and they also liked plantains (not so different from bananas). They also foraged and ate nuts and lots of
fruit. The scientists said that all in all about
72 percent of their calories came from carbohydrates, which is more than in the U.S. at about 52
percent. Fats made up 14 percent of their diet, compared
to 34 percent in the U.S. The scientists added that people in the U.S.
ate way more saturated fat. They weren’t much different from people
in the U.S. in one respect and that was that both get about 14 percent of their calories
from protein, although the researchers said the Tsimane ate more lean meat. What about burning those calories? Well, this is where folks in the U.S. were
very different. Have you been counting your steps using an
app? If so, even if you move a lot in the day 10,000
steps isn’t bad at all. But the Tsimane were averaging 17,000 (men)
and 16,000 (women) every day. Even the people aged over 60 were getting
in an average of 15,000 steps a day. How does all this affect their health? The scientists looked at something called
coronary artery calcium (CAC). If you have a lot of it, you are on your way
to heart problems; you have clogged-up arteries. At the age of 45 the Tsimane had pretty much
no CAC at all. Americans on the other hand at that age do,
about 25 percent of people in total. When Americans reach 75, 80 percent of them
will have CAC. Only one third of the Tsimane will. No where on Earth have researchers found people
with such good tickers. A professor of anthropology at the University
of California said that Japanese women were good, but this is a whole new ballpark. The conclusion is that your average Tsimane
person has the vascular health of an American 50-year old when they are 80. We should add that the Tsimane run the risk
of easily contracting infectious diseases and don’t have the healthcare most westerners
do. It’s not some kind of health utopia in the
Tsimane, but we can learn a lot from them. Nonetheless, it was revealed, “Two thirds
of them suffer intestinal worms and they have a very hard life, without fresh water, sewerage
or electricity,” according to one researcher. They have good hearts, but it doesn’t mean
they don’t face other problems. How do we get the hearts of the Tsimane? It’s quite simple. Don’t stuff yourself with saturated fats
and sugars. Keep your blood sugar, your LDL cholesterol,
your blood pressure, low. Maybe even more importantly, try to move around
a bit and not just during the weekend. Studies show that in industrialized nations
the average person might sit for 54 percent of the day. The Tsimane spent about 10 percent of the
day sedentary. But lo and behold, something similar is happening
to the Tsimane as has been happening to other tribal people we talked about at the start
of the show. Modernity is encroaching into their lifestyle
and they have started buying sugary goods and cooking oils at markets. We are told their cholesterol levels are getting
worse. However, Professor Naveed Sattar, from the
University of Glasgow, called the study beautiful. He told the BBC, “Simply put, eating a healthy
diet very low in saturated fat and full of unprocessed products, not smoking and being
active life long, is associated with the lowest risk of having furring up of blood vessels.” Researchers said while our jobs make it hard
for us to move about a lot, that’s what we should try to do, whether walking to work
or cycling to work. That’s not always easy in the depth of winter
during a bitterly cold, unforgiving December. Well, try to stand more at work, say the researchers. Another doctor said this about the Tsimane,
“They also live in small communities, life is very social, and they maintain a positive
outlook.” This could be more important than you think. You might remember reports about the inhabitants
of Roseto, Pennsylvania. Researchers who went there in the 1960s found
that people didn’t exactly have the greatest diet; they also smoked, they drank (a lot)
and yet they were much healthier on average than their compatriots. Scientists, as is written in the book Sapiens,
were stumped. The people of the town, just about all of
Italian descent, smoked really strong cigars, drank with abandon, ate what they wanted,
and yet they outlived other Americans on average. Heart disease rates were much lower than neighboring
towns. Many of the men also worked hard in nearby
slate quarries and when they got home it’s said they ate a fatty diet full of cholesterol. Lots of cheese, lots of salami, lots of fried
sausages. The Huffington Post wrote in 2008, “Wine
was consumed in preference to all-American soft drinks and even milk.” Hmm, is becoming a wino, a sausage addict
and chain-smoker the answer to all our health issues? Is a bottle of Bordeaux and a stodgy cigar
the panacea for that premature knock on the door by the Grim Reaper? Not quite so, unfortunately. This is what the researchers concluded when
trying to figure out why these folks lived longer and suffered less heart disease than
fellow Americans:They were happier. The Rosetans lived in a very tightly-knit
community. They were never alone, they ate together,
they drank wine together, they look after each other. “No one seemed too unhappy or too stressed
out,” wrote The Huffington Post. “And the proof was a heart attack death
rate almost half of everyone else around them.” Three families might live in one house. The old folks were not sent away to drizzle
out their last years within the confines of some deathly care home. Like the Tsimane, they were very social and
took care of their community. Unfortunately, as time went by, this all changed,
and the people of Roseto started to live like their neighbors. The American Journal of Public Health investigated
the town in 1992, more than 30 years after the initial reports and researchers said the
average Rosettan had become “Americanized”. The sense of community was gone, and so was
the good health. They were stressed, they were sometimes lonely,
and the “Roseto Effect” was no longer in effect. Perhaps if we deal with our stress and maintain
our close relationships, if we have fun as often as we can and nurture love around us,
it can impact our health in a positive way as it did according to those scientists for
the Rosetans. Maybe we can take a leaf out of the Tsimane
book of life and move around a lot more, eating largely non-processed foods. Maybe then we will live healthier and longer
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have your own amazing site! Do you believe this to be true? Do you feel like your neighborhood has a sense
of community? Let us know in the comments. Also, be sure to check out our other video
The Cannibal Island. Thanks for watching, and as always, please
don’t forget to like, share and subscribe. See you next time.

100 thoughts on “Why Is This Tribe So Far From Civilization So Healthy

  1. Cus trials don't have doctors and doctors are the reason why we have had health. I AM NOT LYING! The doctors give you medicine that give u side effects and decrease your life expectancy

  2. You guys arent bright are you? Tribal doesnt mean dirty. Yes, americans dont do shit… my ex was wondering why she was so fat yet she ate as much as me, but layed down and did nothing…

  3. What I truly got from this video is excess saturated fats are bad, not exercising is very bad, and who knew doing a shitty job for 8 hours or more is somehow worse than living a tribal life. Well actually that last one never surprised me, I could tell current American lifestyle of overworking is garbage and I'm an American.

  4. what are the chances you will respond to this? The picture on 1:42 are Kayan people from MYANMAR not Thailand. They make their necks long for the dragon.

  5. You say a lot of Americans am hard time staying active what about blue-collar workers who are 12 hours a day standing up for 90% of that time only setting down during breaks ?

  6. This video is bs – there is NOTHING wrong with eating saturated fats! The things to avoids are processed carbs(99% of the bread in supermarket, pasta, any of those energy cliff bar things) and processed fat (vegetable oils, fast food etc.)

  7. The most clear marker of healthy people is naturally straight teeth and square jaws. I bet these tribal people have these features as they breast feed, live outside (less allergies), keep their tongues up and eat tough food.

  8. Check out this seven Day Adventists vegans and vegetarians in Florida. Their are the longest living people on earth

  9. So it may be partially diet and moving around and partially maintaining social relations. Diet makes sense because higher saturated fats can gunk up your arteries (they're more likely to remain solid at room temp than unsaturated fats, so imagine that in your body), and keeping active allows you to keep moving as you age. As for the social aspect, older people almost seem to age faster when they're alone. I remember meeting my friend's great-grandma and she was still pretty sharp, but she couldn't remember my name. My friend's mom explained that people didn't come to visit her as often as they should, so the parts of her brain used to interact with ppl were not used as much and therefore she had trouble remembering some things like names. That's why it's so important to take care of the elderly and visit them. Just interacting with them helps to keep them sharp.

    Also, our innate drive for social interaction as a species may explain why pets are shown to have many health benefits to their owners. Pets provide companionship and interaction. It's not the same as human interaction, but the unconditional love and often unsolicited social interaction really helps. I know I personally feel better when I'm living with my cats compared to when I was off at college.

  10. There was no need for this video or research to be had simply they never made the fatal mistake if getting a flu shot or consuming vast amounts of tasty process foods or that garbage called McDonald's.

  11. LIES ALL LIES FUCKIN PALE SKIN DISEASE Colonizers used Three main doctrine of religion and mass murder MILLIONS smdh wake up

  12. cause they aret boredom eating while stuck standing around at work for 8-12 hrs 6-7 days a week on a rotating shift trying to pay unpayable debt on everything they thought would cure their ego issues and depression like a bunch of stupid slaves….. not that they have a choice since land in north America is $100 per square inch and taxed because it still doesn't belong to you and you cant just camp in somebody's Forrest because that's trespassing, you could rent but it will cost you 2/3" of everything you make for the next 60 years or till you commit suicide.

  13. Here's another detailed list of instructions to get yourself your own Tsimane heart.
    Go to Bolivia.
    Kill a Tsimane tribe member.
    Extract their heart.

  14. White people should learn how to think about how to say things and why things are how they are cause this ain’t really it

  15. A lot of other civilizations lived disease free until whitey showed up spreading disease and death…

  16. Wouldnt it be more appropiate showing the natives in some atleast a little bit of traditional clothing?

  17. Lots of exercise, organic food, little stresses and far away from harmful viruses. Americanize have become a disease so don't be Americanize. ^_^

  18. Vegans have been on suicide watch ever since the Tsimane people were found to have the healthiest hearts in the world, without being vegan.

  19. Imma take a swing at this before watching the video:

    Because white ppl didn’t take their deceases to them….. yet.

  20. yo plantains are VERY different from bananas. plantains have a similar consistency and starchiness to that of a potato

  21. U wonder why the world is falling apart? We’ve lost our sense of community and abandoned nature entirely, everything Americans (and increasingly the world) do from what we eat to how we interact is slowly making us lonelier, distracted, unhealthier and detached. The internet only further perpetuates this process.

  22. I don't agree with everything this video has been saying about being healthy when eating of the land and being active. I used to play this game that was 100%mirrored off historical events and it was treacherous. The title was called "Oregon Trail". I remember people dieing from hostile attacks from natives,humans and livestock being decimated by various illness and diseases. So clearly your lifestyle has a major impact on your life outside of diet and exercise. I honestly doubt the creators of the revolutionary game called "the Oregon trail" would ever lie or twist facts for pure entertainment. Besides being my jam for many years, it's also how I learned about the wild west outside of books, TV and school.

  23. Well tribes are poor so they can't afford stuff, work for it, get healthy and BOOM lives till 120 and suddenly the westerns are like bruh why didn't you die, while eating MacDonald and watching Netflix

  24. I'd rather be a fat happy American eating cheeseburgers until my heart explodes at age 70 than running around barefoot killing my dinner every day and live to be 90…

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