Science & Technology

Austrians drank beer and ate blue cheese until 2700 years ago

Human feces usually don’t last long — and certainly not for thousands of years. However, exceptions to this general rule can be found in several parts of the world, including the prehistoric salt mine in Hallstatt-Dachstein / Salzkammergut, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Austria. Currently, researchers studying ancient fecal samples (or old feces) from these mines have found some surprising evidence: the presence of two fungal species used in the production of blue cheese and beer. ..The survey results will be displayed in the journal Current biology October 13th.

“Genome-wide analysis shows that both fungi are involved in food fermentation and provide the first molecular evidence of blue cheese and beer consumption in Iron Age Europe,” Frank Mexner said. Says (@FrankMaixner) Of the Eurac Research Institute for Mummy Studies in Bolzano, Italy.

“These results shed a substantial new light on the lives of Hallstatt’s prehistoric salt miners and allow us to understand common ancient culinary practices at a whole new level,” says Kerstin Kowarik. Add (@KowarikKerstin) Of the Museum of Natural History Vienna. “Not only is prehistoric culinary practice sophisticated, but it is becoming increasingly clear that complex processed foods and fermentation techniques have played an important role in our early dietary history.”

Early studies have already shown that prehistoric paleoesophageal studies from salt mining may provide important insights into early human diet and health. In a new study, Maixner, Kowarik, and their colleagues added detailed microscopy, metagenomics, and proteomics analysis to investigate the microbes, DNA, and proteins present in these faeces samples.

These comprehensive studies have allowed them to reconstruct the diets of the people who once lived there. They were also able to get information about the ancient microbes that lived in their gut. Gut microbiota are collectively known as the gut microbiota and are now recognized to play an important role in human health.

Their dietary survey confirmed that bran and rice husks of various grains are one of the most common plant fragments. They report that broad bean protein was added to this highly fibrous, carbohydrate-rich diet, and sometimes fruit, nuts, or animal foods.

Until the Baroque era, ancient miners had a structure similar to that of modern non-Westerners, in line with a plant-rich diet. Its diet also consists primarily of raw foods, fresh fruits and vegetables. The findings suggest more recent changes in the western gut microbiota as diet and lifestyle change.

When researchers extended their microbiological research to include fungi, what surprised them most was that they were abundant in one of the Iron Age samples. Penicillium rock forty When Saccharomyces cerevisiae DNA.

“Halstadt miners seem to have deliberately applied food fermentation technology using the microorganisms still used in the food industry today,” says Maixner.

He adds that the findings provide the first evidence that people were already producing blue cheese in Iron Age Europe almost 2,700 years ago. Current and future studies of Halstadt archaea hope to learn more about the early production of fermented foods and the interaction of nutrition with the composition of the gut microbiota over various periods.

Austrians drank beer and ate blue cheese until 2700 years ago Austrians drank beer and ate blue cheese until 2700 years ago

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