How did we (humans) figure that the pain in our stomachs was because we were hungry? How did eating first come to be? What drove us to think about eating in the first place; unknowingly putting things in our mouth to find a satisfaction?
Good question. It seems to be quite complicated, even for simple animals and bacteria.
I love this type of question, it really makes me think.
Haha, janesix! That's why I try to ask difficult questions. They're just extremely mentally stimulating ! It has to be more than biological and/or instinctual.
When birds go to feed their babies in the nest and pick up a worm to feed how does the bird possibly know the worm is nutritious in any way and that it will extend the life of its kind? It's just utterly astounding and confusing at the same time for me!
If the case is, babies picking up things and putting it in their mouth there must have been a lot of trial and error involved...!!
Genetics. The same way a spider spins a web. Our earliest ancestors have been doing that before humans evolved. Before vertebrates evolved. There is no learning involved. Obtaining the food and cultural practices surrounding that are a different story.
You aren't going back far enough, historically speaking. I want to know about the beginning of the human species.
"Before vertebrates evolved."
Please do some research on what a vertebrate is and the first ones to appear. That predates our evolution, and amphibians. The beginning of life is theorized to have occurred from a symbiosis between prokaryotes and cyanobacteria.
Well, I don't read minds. He wrote I wasn't going back far enough, so I don't know what he wants me to address.
Ladies, ladies, please! Sorry, I wanted to reference a movie. Haha. But yes, Melissa, I do know of vertebrates and amphibians. I'm not concerned about the evolution, I want to know how "instinct" got animals, as well as humans to figure out eating. There is no way living things magically thought that eating another living thing would make them grow and be healthy (relative to the living thing, of course). When anything living FIRST came on the Earth, what made them "feel" that eating something was going to continue their survival ??
It's a really hard question, I don't blame you for not being able to answer, I doubt anyone has an answer. I just want to know what was so common sensible about putting an object in your mouth and hoping you'd "cure" your pain in your stomach.
The question has been answered numerous times and it is basic common sense, really. You are just not understanding me for some unknown reason.
It is an ingrained -instinct-, mediated by your genes. No one 'figured out eating', the same way no one figured out how to breath. Someone mentioned babies are born with the suckle instinct, and they are correct. You come out of your mother's womb looking for the nipple, and later you start experimenting placing objects in your mouth, and obviously your caretaker leads you to eat the right things.
In the case of an animal like a snake, they hatch, an animal comes by, and the instinct gives them everything they need. This instinct has been passed down from life-form to life-form since the dawn of life. I hope you get it now.
Breathing is more straightforward than eating. Genes were developed. That means before they were, it wasn't genetic to "instinctively" know that eating would be wise. Babies instinctively put things in their mouths, that's why toy companies write in the caution explanation that children under 3 years (or sometimes 18 months and less) should stay away from certain toys.
You mention my caretaker, but where did that person learn and so on ? That's what I'm getting at. Of course there's been an evolution, but something happened before evolution. There was a level one (if I can use a video game analogy). Something unaware of the dangers of the world but put on this Earth to survive and expand life. I want to know what that living species did to survive without dying. It's more complicated than it sounds - and no, I'm not overthinking this if that's what you're wondering.
"That means before they were, it wasn't genetic to "instinctively" know that eating would be wise."
I feel like you're messing with me. You keep asking how HUMANS learned to eat, which is showing a complete lack of knowledge about organisms. You shouldn't be asking about eating in humans or any vertebrates. You should be asking about the origin of life and the first lifeforms to 'eat', which were highly simplistic multicellular lifeforms that 'ate' before they evolved into more complex lifeforms...eventually leading to humans. Your own immune system contains phagocytic cells that engulf foreign particles. Who taught them how to eat??
Something does not get encoded into genes after an animal learns how to do something, as far as I know. Genes instead express traits that might lead an animal to do something.
Where did your caretaker 'learn'? From their parents and genes. And where did they 'learn'? From another 'Homo' species...from primate relatives...from ancestors of mammals...from bony fish...from early arthropods...from mindless multicellular organisms...from simple prokaryotes...
Let me emphasize again that
1. NO human 'learned' how to eat.
2. The eating instinct is continuous throughout the evolution of all lifeforms, originating with the first organisms to exist.
3. Your 'level one' is the subject of hot debate among biologists as to how life began, the advent of DNA that progresses through Darwinian evolution, and instincts.
Bacteria absorb food. Sponges filter food through water that flows through their body. Probably just baby steps all the way up to picking up food and putting it in your mouth.
If I were to venture a guess...
Babies are born knowing to root for a nipple when they're hungry. Purely instinctual. As a baby grows, they require more than milk to thrive/satisfy hunger, so they put other things in their mouths to satisfy hunger.
You're right, it probably did take a lot of trial and error. Those who chose good, nutritious foods lived on to teach their children what and how to eat. Those who ate poisonous berries or rocks died.
The feeling you get when you're hungry actually comes from your hypothalamus, I'd say that if there's something in your brain motivating you to feel hungry, it's likely that there's something else in your brain that motivates you to eat (as seen with newborns who instinctually root).
It probably has to be one of the very first thing that evolved in animals. We've just had millions of years to refine it.
I don't know if babies instinctively go for the nipple necessarily. I think they just want something in their mouths and mothers understand that it might be hunger, but that's taught, not instinct.
They do. If you Google "breast crawl" you'll find several videos. If a mother lays flat with her baby on her belly, the newborn pushes itself towards the nipple and finds it completely unaided. Pretty amazing stuff!
Its instinctive and also we learn from surroundings...babies do exactly the same thing which they perceive in their surroundings...
I'm talking about the first being ever to feel hunger and be oblivious of the pain in the stomach that is lack of nutrition. How did he survive to even spread the seed to others? Did he figure out what to eat/what not to eat before dying? Someone must've. Or else people wouldn't exist. It's just such a mystery to me...
It's a mystery to me too.
Kind of like, how were there pollinating flowers before there were bees (or vive versa). They would have somehow had to evolve the system in tandem.
I personally suspect the universe is a growing, living entity, that is unfolding along a specific path.
It's the only thing I can think of, that doesn't bring a supernatural reason into the picture.
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