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The Comparative Anatomy of Eating

Excerpted from The Comparative Anatomy of Eating, by Milton R. Mills, MD - (Dr. Mills is a graduate of the Stanford School of Medicine)

Which category are humans most suited for?

*Facial Muscles*
CARNIVORE: Reduced to allow wide mouth gape
OMNIVORE: Reduced
HERBIVORE: Well-developed
HUMAN: Well-developed

*Jaw Type*
CARNIVORE: Angle not expanded
HERBIVORE: Expanded angle
OMNIVORE: Angle not expanded
HUMAN: Expanded angle

*Jaw Joint Location*
CARNIVORE: On same plane as molar teeth
HERBIVORE: Above the plane of the molars
OMNIVORE: On same plane as molar teeth
HUMAN: Above the plane of the molars

*Jaw Motion*
CARNIVORE: Shearing; minimal side-to-side motion
HERBIVORE: No shear; good side-to-side, front-to-back
OMNIVORE: Shearing; minimal side-to-side
HUMAN: No shear; good side-to-side, front-to-back

*Major Jaw Muscles*
CARNIVORE: Temporalis
HERBIVORE: Masseter and pterygoids
OMNIVORE: Temporalis
HUMAN: Masseter and pterygoids

*Mouth Ope ning vs. Head Size*
CARNIVORE: Large
HERBIVORE: Small
OMNIVORE: Large
HUMAN: Small

*Teeth: Incisors*
CARNIVORE: Short and pointed
HERBIVORE: Broad, flattened and spade shaped
OMNIVORE: Short and pointed
HUMAN: Broad, flattened and spade shaped

*Teeth: Canines*
CARNIVORE: Long, sharp and curved
HERBIVORE: Dull and short or long (for defense), or none
OMNIVORE: Long, sharp and curved
HUMAN: Short and blunted

*Teeth: Molars*
CARNIVORE: Sharp, jagged and blade shaped
HERBIVORE: Flattened with cusps vs complex surface
OMNIVORE: Sharp blades and/or flattened
HUMAN: Flattened with nodular cusps

*Chewing*
CARNIVORE: None; swallows food whole
HERBIVORE: Extensive chewing necessary
OMNIVORE: Swallows food whole and/or simple crushing
HUMAN: Extensive chewing necessary

*Saliva*
CARNIVORE: No digestive enzymes
HERBIVORE: Carbohydrate digesting enzymes
OMNIVORE: No digestive enzymes
HUMAN: Carbohydrate digesting enzymes

*Stomach Type*
CARNIVORE: Simple
HERBIVORE: Simple or multiple chambers
OMNIVORE: Simple
HUMAN: Simple

*Stomach Acidity*
CARNIVORE: Less than or equal to pH 1 with food in stomach
HERBIVORE: pH 4 to 5 with food in stomach
OMNIVORE: Less than or equal to pH 1 with food in stomach
HUMAN: pH 4 to 5 with food in stomach

*Stomach Capacity*
CARNIVORE: 60% to 70% of total volume of digestive tract
HERBIVORE: Less than 30% of total volume of digestive tract
OMNIVORE: 60% to 70% of total volume of digestive tract
HUMAN: 21% to 27% of total volume of digestive tract

*Length of Small Intestine*
CARNIVORE: 3 to 6 times body length
HERBIVORE: 10 to more than 12 times body length
OMNIVORE: 4 to 6 times body length
HUMAN: 10 to 11 times body length

*Colon*
CARNIVORE: Simple, short and smooth
HERBIVORE: Long, complex; may be sacculated
OMNIVORE: Simple, short an d smooth
HUMAN: Long, sacculated

*Liver*
CARNIVORE: Can detoxify vitamin A
HERBIVORE: Cannot detoxify vitamin A
OMNIVORE: Can detoxify vitamin A
HUMAN: Cannot detoxify vitamin A

*Kidney*
CARNIVORE: Extremely concentrated urine
HERBIVORE: Moderately concentrated urine
OMNIVORE: Extremely concentrated urine
HUMAN: Moderately concentrated urine

*Nails*
CARNIVORE: Sharp claws
HERBIVORE: Flattened nails or blunt hooves
OMNIVORE: Sharp claws
HUMAN: Flattened nails

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