EvolutionaryMedicine- Application of principles of evolutionary theory to practice/research
in field of medicine. Look at proximal (what are immediate consequences of the issue;
how do we solve the disease via biomedicine) and ultimate (why did we evolve this trait;
what purpose does this trait serve) causes for each health issue.
1) Redefine “normal” based on specific culture / population
-biomedicine is based on what is “normal” in Western Populations
-drugs are often dosed too high for other cultures leading to ill effects on health
2) Development is highly influenced by culture
- immune strength is dependent on breastfeeding b/c antibodies are transmitted through breast milk;
western society is moving away from breastfeeding so new trend of “weaker” immune systems.
- maternal exposure to pathogens has effect on assortment of antibodies transferred through
breastfeeding; ie) mothers from third-world countries are exposed to more pathogens in their lifetime
compared to mothers in developed nations.
2) Must take socioeconomic conditions into considerations
- intragenerationalphenotypicinertia = if family has history of glucose intolerance because of low birth
weights (ie. great grandparents, grandparents, parents all born low bw) then mother eating a lot during
pregnancy will not remove glucose intolerance for her kids in one generation.
- this is a problem in poor neighborhoods bc no money to be well-fed.
- low % educated population, teenage pregnancy, crime all limit access to good food, social services,
1) Nutritional Health
- ancestral hunter-gatherer diet was drastically dif