It seems that colder climates created bigger brains that adapted to cope with cold, but some scientists now fear that global warming trends could be reversing this evolution. Who’d have thought smaller human brains would be a result of warmer climates?
University at Albany researchers will publish their study in the spring edition of Human Nature – to show how human cranial capacity or brain size grew dramatically during our early evolution, and how the rise and fall of global heat, as well as ongoing trends toward global cooling, account for as much as 50 percent of the variation in cranial capacity.
Interestingly, researchers Gordon Gallup and Jessica Ash found that as the distance from the equator increased, in both north or south directions, so did brain size increase. It seems that a key environmental trigger that resulted in larger brains was people’s need to invent ways to keep warm and manage their fluctuations in food availability. These problems of course, are exacerbated by cold weather.
However, that study also appears to point to the fact that when we invent, and create and use our brains to improve our situation, we increase our brains cognitive functions to solve real world problems. What do you think?