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Open Access Publications from the University of California

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The Journal of Evolution and Health brings together academic researchers and clinical practitioners to develop evolutionary insights into the major factors affecting health, and to translate those insights into practical methods for improving human and animal health.

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Extended Abstracts

Evolutionary Mismatch: Implications Far Beyond Diet and Exercise

The concept of evolutionary mismatch has been much discussed concerning diet and several other aspects of modern lifestyle. However, it applies much more broadly to include unequal distribution of resources, mistreatment of women, difficulty with long term planning (e.g., cigarette smoking, lack of retirement planning, failure to address environmental problems, etc.), sexual dysfunction and addiction, drug abuse, postural abnormalities, and many other challenges faced in the modern world. These mismatches can have a variety of proximal causes including people being faced with supernormal releasers, the modern social context being completely different than that in which we evolved, and the fact that our brain did not evolve to deal with certain situations. With an understanding of the underlying causes, some of these problems can be addressed in an effective way.

Feeding Your Microbiome Well

There is increased recognition that the health of the individual depends on the health of the ecosystem of the microbial community living on and in the body of the individual. The state of the individual’s ecosystem is reflected in the diversity of species living in the gut microbiome. This paper will summarize recent findings on the gut brain axis, the connection between the gut microbiome and health status, and practical steps, using diet and lifestyle interventions, an individual can take to monitor and improve the diversity of species in their gut microbiome.