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 Is Eating Humans Actually Unhealthy?
 이** (jean)



Cannibalism is a clear taboo in our society. But, putting ethics aside, 

what are the other reasons why you should not eat other humans?



Did you know that cannibalism used to be a popular medical remedy? 

That's right, in the 17th century, well before Advil, Europeans would ingest

ground up mummies for headaches. And human fat, blood, and bone were 

used to treat everything from gout to nosebleeds, yet cannibalism is largely 

absent and morally frowned upon today. But let's forget the social quagmire.

There are plenty of reasons why you shouldn't eat people these days. 

For starters, we now know that human meat is a surprisingly low source of 

calories compared to other red meats. According to one study, human muscle

contains about 1,300 calories per kilogram. That's less than beef, and nothing

compared to bear and boar meat. Now you might think this would actually make 

human burgers a great low cal alternative, until you remember you're probably

trying to eat humans because you're starving to death. So low cal is the 

opposite of what you want, plus it's not worth taking the risk if you could 

help it. It turns out we carry some pretty nasty diseases that make 24-hour 

food poisoning look like the sniffles. Eat someone raw, and you risk contracting

any bloodborne diseases they carry. But even if you cook the meat, it still 

won't always go so well for you. Case in point are the Fore people of Papua

New Guinea. The would eat the body and brain of the deceased family 

members out of cultural tradition. But that practice stopped after hundreds of 

people died in the 1950s and '60s from an otherwise rare neurological disorder 

which they contracted from eating infected human brains. The brain tissue 

contained prions, deadly misfolded proteins that form spongy holes in your brain.

They survive the cooking process and, if eaten, are highly contagious. 

On the legal side of things, cannibalism falls into a gray area. Oddly enough,

cannibalism itself isn't illegal in the US or UK, but you probably committed some 

crime along the way to get that slab of meat, grave robbing, desecration of a 

corpse, murder and maybe all of the above. One exception that won't put you

behind bars is if you eat yourself. Yep, that's a thing. It's called autocannibalism.

The most common example today, called placentophagy, is when a woman eats

her placenta after giving birth. The idea is that it could raise energy levels and 

reduce the risk of postpartum depression by stabilizing hormones, but the science

is still out on whether there's any real benefit. Regardless, this ancient practice 

has recently found new life in Western culture. Kim Kardashian and Alicia Silverstone

have reportedly done it. And there are numerous US companies that will grind your

placenta into a powder so you could take it like any other vitamin supplement, 

but the CDC warns that even this cutting edge form of cannibalism is a bad idea

because it could transfer a harmful bacteria from mother to child. So if you have

a hankering for human, maybe try some pork instead. After all, that's what 

we taste like. Oh, wait, wait, I mean according to cannibals. 



1. How was cannibalism a popular medical remedy in the 17th century? 

2. How is human meat compared with other meat? 

3. Give example of autocannibalism.

2021-03-17 오후 12:41:47
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