bear with me on this one.. .. right, so where there are plants, there are plant predators, i.e. herbivores.. okay.. and plants, because they have so much cellulose protecting them, need a seriously efficient digestive system in order to make any use out of them, and this is why herbivores tend to be massive (sauropod dinosaurs, cows, horses, &c.), they need to grow to enormous sizes to carry a large enough stomach to mash around masses of plant matter at the same time.. and accordingly, carnivores that live around big herbivores end up growing to large sizes as well, tho that's more to do with being able to tackle a buffalo or something of that size, and not so much for being able to carry a massive stomach (consider e.g. cats, weasels, civets &c., which are usually quite small animals and never chew their food, because meat is the easiest kind of food to digest) .. .. and then there are wolves, raptor dinosaurs, and so on..

right, so that's how that works everywhere, carnivores tend to be quite small and herbivores tend to be quite large, as plants don't have a lot of nutrition in them and anything that lives on them needs to be able to carry a lot at once.. .. okay, but then we have people like the chinese and the japanese, and their staple is rice, a notoriously low-nutrition and low-energy kind of food.. .. i always thought that the chinese and japanese ( were so small because they ate so much rice, didn't get enough protein, couldn't grow very large, but that's not the way it works in the rest of the animal kingdom, i realized.. why aren't chinese and japanese people massive in comparison to the rest of us? ..

.. okay climate has something to do with body shape as well, so animals in cold areas grow large and round (polar bears as compared to grizzlies, wolverines as compared to badgers, elk as compared to deer, they're all much larger and rounder forms than their warmer-climate counterparts), as eskimos, &c., have done, they're short and round because that's the shape that's best for retaining heat.. and sub-saharan africans are long and thin, and it's because that shape, body mass:surface area ratio, is best for losing a lot of heat.. .. but the chinese and japanese are just smaller versions of temperate-climate humans, climate doesn't seem to have any effect on their size or shape, it seems to be to do with their diet.. so why are they that size, if all they have to eat is rice? .. i mean, as a staple, of course- rice only has about half the energy, weight for weight, of wheat, makes sense that the people who live on it would end up growing to larger sizes in order to incorporate the amounts they'd need to eat to survive .. .. hm.. .. actually i think i might have answered my own question there, it's probably to do with being able to sustain the large size on rice.. .. yea, that's probably what it is, you may carry on with your lives now haha

Made popular on: 
Tue, 11/13/2012 - 2:59pm


Thu, 10/18/2012 - 4:16pm
Mon, 11/12/2012 - 12:44pm
EvilMonkey Says:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but are you saying that asians eat rice, and only rice?

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 10:34am
bakayurei Says:

me or the panda? .. yea i'm pretty much basing this idea on the premise that east asians predominantly eat rice, same as other cereal-eating people predominantly eat their local cereal as well as other food.. rice is very poor in nutrition, is my basic point, you'd need a super efficient body to get all you can out of it, even if you were mixing your diet up at the same time, since everyone else does that as well.. except arctic people

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 1:51pm
EvilMonkey Says:

Both. but since pandas don't talk much, I'll accept just your answer.

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 5:08pm

Take in the fact that we also have a killer metabolism.
I think because of climate and food it has genetically modified our bodies to take in very little nutrition.
Maybe that's why asians are pale-yellow?
Generations of evolution man.

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 6:37pm
Aeon Says:

I would say it might be fair to say 50-60% of the diet of a typical person from asia might be rice.
In typical rice meal is only about 40-75% of the meal mass is rice anyway... then take in to account that they don't always eat rice meals. There are soooo many different traditional (and ridiculously amazing) asian dishes that don't have any rice.. and they would have been staple meals for many people.

Fish, pork and chicken are in nearly every meal in asia, plus copious amounts of fruit and vegetables.

Damn I'm hungry and hanging out to get back to Japan.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 9:00am
bakayurei Says:

yea i know, but still, compared with wheat and barley, rice is very low energy food .. and so is maize.. maybe that's why indigenous mexicans are also so short

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 10:37am
NoFace8899 Says:

If what you're saying is true, then wouldn't they have small bodies because they have efficient bodies?

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 12:58pm
bakayurei Says:

since they tend to have small bodies, then what i'm saying is nowhere close to true .. but no, smaller bodies are less efficient than bigger ones, dinosaurs had really simple teeth that were no good for grinding up their food, so to make their diet work for them they had to become massive, because they wouldn't have been able to get much out of their food with a small stomach

Sat, 11/03/2012 - 8:01pm

Please make it easier to read..
I am amazed how much sense this makes. And it's the same in the ocean. Whales are herbivores, and HUGE, you can't even imagine how big it actually is, until you've seen it swimming in front of you.
and we all know how big sharks are, which are carnivores.. they're still big but that's just because moving through water which is way harder to get through than air, hence a bigger muscle mass..

Sun, 11/04/2012 - 12:23am
baked101 Says:

whales arent herbivores.. thats funny to imagine a whale grazing at the bottom of an ocean ha

Sun, 11/04/2012 - 12:11pm
bakayurei Says:

i don't know why whales are so big but it's not because of their diet, thanks for bringing that up, now i can find out.. o right haha yea apparently it's just like land mammals that live in cold climates, whales have to be massive so they'd be more efficient heat conserving machines .. .. and sorry about the wall of text, i'm no good with holding on to my train of thought if i have to keep stopping and starting, i'll put some breaks in now

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 1:32am

Ever hear of Gigantopithecus? They existed in Asia and were triple the size of a regular man in that age. My theory is that when the continents finally did break, some of these amazing creatures made their way to the Americas and its what all these honkies claim to see aka Bigfoot.

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 12:14pm
bakayurei Says:

that's my theory as well, because there isn't just one culture that has stories about giant shy man-apes, there's also yetis, yowies in australia, and there are probably loads more from other places as well.. in 'haunted' by chuck palahniuk, in the bit about the werewolf character, he says that it might be that these are all werewolves, but i'm not convinced by that, werewolves are supposed to be doglike and aren't shy at all.. either there's another species of hominid that lives all over the world and is descended from gigantopithecuses (or whatever other unknown ape), or it's an archetype shared by all human cultures .. but then again, all cultures have different monster legends that are all different versions of that archetype of monsters and things that are different from us, doesn't explain why there are so many legends that are almost identical

Sun, 11/11/2012 - 7:36pm

haha wales eat fish not sea flowers er something XD

Mon, 11/12/2012 - 7:42pm
stockstew Says:

Haha it's funny that you mentioned Eskimos are round

Sun, 11/04/2012 - 12:22am
baked101 Says:

the smaller the animal the less nutrients it would need though right.. so that doesnt really make sense that herbivores need to be bigger for more food. idk thats a lot to think about, its kinda all over the place.

Sun, 11/04/2012 - 12:07pm
bakayurei Says:

yea but it's most efficient to be big as a plant eater, if you're small it's more efficient to eat energy-rich food such as insects and fruit and seeds, and if you only eat leaves then you almost invariably have to be massive, because cellulose needs proper hard core digestion before you can get at the good stuff behind it, and you need a massive stomach to hold loads of it long enough to get anything at all out of it.. this isn't just theory, you can see it in the world, doesn't matter if it makes sense to you or not .. look how big the dinosaurs were, and how big gorillas are in relation to chimps .. horses, cows, elephants, these are all giants, and hummingbirds are tiny.. and it's why we started eating meat in the first place, because our ancestors were too small to survive on plants alone, and their cheeks weren't strong enough .. there's an exception to this rule (that i've heard of, there are likely to be loads more), the hoatzin, a south american bird that eats nothing but leaves, it's basically a flying cow except they don't get very big .. and then there are polar bears, the biggest bear, and they're full carnivores, but that's because of a different thing, arctic animals always have to be bigger than their equivalents from lower latitudes because being massive and round gives you a better size:surface area ratio, so you can conserve heat better

Mon, 11/12/2012 - 1:23am

i've thought about that, too. cows and horses are pretty darn big, but they spend their ENTIRE lives just eating grasses and hays. they devote their entire life to eating this one unending, but nutrient-poor food source.

Tue, 11/06/2012 - 6:46pm
jake_ Says:

hmm i dont believe you have answered your own question
"i mean, as a staple, of course- rice only has about half the energy, weight for weight, of wheat, makes sense that the people who live on it would end up growing to larger sizes in order to incorporate the amounts they'd need to eat to survive"

wouldnt this mean that east asians theoretically should grow to larger sizes?

Also, I dont believe diet is the only factor determining human size. To figure out this mystery, we should investigate where the asians came from, and their native culture. Were they ancestors of African? I also believe the asians rode horses to hunt, which maybe accounts for a change in body structure

Thu, 11/08/2012 - 12:25pm
bakayurei Says:

thanks for saying so .. i was kind of in the middle of 'they should be massive so they could carry around bigger stomachs' and 'it makes sense that they're small, can't sustain large sizes just on rice' .. as for where they come from, back when we were homo erectus (well, before then), that species split in to two groups, erectus and ergaster, and the erectuses lived in china and the ergasters lived in africa.. maybe it's like the way most europeans have neanderthals in their family tree .. tho the difference between homo sapiens and erectus is quite a bit wider than between us and neanderthals isn't it.. so nevermind that haha .. .. um.. yea they're most likely descended from african homo sapiens, like us.. oo! except europeans or probably caucasians in general have some neanderthal ancestry as well, and they were more heavy set than homo sapiens.. so maybe that has something to do with it, it's not that east asians are smaller than the rest of us, it's more that europoids are bigger .. but that doesn't sound right neither

Mon, 11/12/2012 - 1:25pm
bakayurei Says:

hello there, in the corner, i recognize you.. thanks again everyone who thinks i've been making sense

Mon, 11/12/2012 - 3:37pm
Locifer Says:

by means of energy, plants are producers, so the highest order of energy is contained there. as you go up each level, the amount of energy goes down. plant (highest) --> herbivore (next highest) --> 1st predator (3rd in line, second from producer) --> 2nd predator (even lower energy). as you move further away from the pant, the less amount of viable nutrients available. Pure predators such as lions and wolves hunt for food which takes time and they aren't always successful in their endeavor, meaning they're more likely to go hungry as compared to herbivores who have a chance of obtaining more food on a daily basis.

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 2:35am

I eat rice and I'm bigger than alot of white people and other race no offense soooo ... ??? doesn't apply to all asians i guess.

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 2:37am

but than again I'm not chinese or japanese I'm Lao/Thai soo It might be the climate? or idk.. mind fucked?

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 10:36am
bakayurei Says:

i think people from your area are a mixture of negroid and mongoloid, that might be why that is.. i'm going from memory on this, so i'll have to look it up to be sure that i'm not pulling that out of my arse

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 2:57am
CapnBakes Says:

there is a significant possibility that it is just a genetic trend, like how certain dogs have tendencies to have certain colors. it may not be caused by the environment, but it could be just "something that happened" for example the smaller people in the area had some sort of other genetic advantage, so the ones with those traits passed on the whole set, smallness included.

really good thinking too! i like the thoughts about herbivores being large etc

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 10:38am
bakayurei Says:

but what else is there to shape how you're going to look except your environment? .. there's sexual selection, i guess.. maybe smaller people are more attractive over there, for some reason.. might also explain the japanese obsession with schoolgirls hahaha

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 6:43am
Tue, 11/13/2012 - 10:43am
bakayurei Says:

o yea and here's another thing that might have gone in to it, some chinese palaeontologists believe that east asians (or maybe they think it's just the chinese) are descended from homo erectus, while the rest of us (including us and neanderthals) came from the homo ergaster line .. another descendant of homo erectus was homo floresiensis, the 'hobbit man' .. might be something in it, tho the fact that all humans can breed with all others makes me think that it's probably not true, there'd be too much genetic divergance for any mixing to be possible.. tho you can breed camels with llamas .. i'd like to see their conclusions after looking over the genomes of the chinese and europeans and africans

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 4:23pm
Smokeherb Says:

Youre comparing humans to brainless monsters and animals wtf are you even saying? Asians eat like literally every kind of meat on earth and every fish in the sea you highass, and genetically we are almost all identical. The reason for the general stature has to do with something entirely different

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 4:42pm
bakayurei Says:

why not compare humans to other animals? what else are we, that you don't think we work on the same basic principles? and i wasn't putting this out as a proper theory for serious consideration by evolutionary biologists or anything like that, just playing with ideas in my head, if it offends you to see that then i'm sorry .. but if you want to enlighten me with the truth about the matter, then feel free, i'm always happy to learn new stuff

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 7:13pm
krisyooo Says:

Tue, 11/13/2012 - 7:29pm
krisyooo Says: .. lmk what u think

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 1:45pm
wehttam Says:

it doesn't have anything to do with this. the women just have really tight vaginas so bigger people just couldn't fit.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 4:48pm
BlaqSpice Says:
Wed, 11/14/2012 - 6:22pm
bakayurei Says:

or you could have used verne troyer as an example from the other side.. either way, these are mutants, outliers

Sat, 04/05/2014 - 2:59pm
AdamOest Says:

I think that it would stand to reason these outliers could have been some of the major ancestors of each race, more or less exaggerated in certain ethnicities, and the people moving east were ancestrally tied groups that were on the smaller side of the spectrum, with one of their oldest male ancestors being a much smaller man genetically for no reason other than that he was an outlier in the population. These trends clearly continue as a product of pure genetics, not just how much food you consume in your lifetime.

Wed, 11/14/2012 - 11:37pm
Thu, 11/15/2012 - 2:41pm

one of the best highdeas ive seen in a while. well done sir

Sat, 11/17/2012 - 9:07pm
Dead_Fox Says:

I'm going to say most probably climate and thousands of years of fairly limited diet. The Congolese Pygmies may be an extreme example, but they are an example of generations of natural selection. Those with a physique which gives them an upper hand will outlive their disadvantaged competitors. Much of China itself is dry, wet, and humid subtropical. The Congo is likewise mostly tropical and sub-tropical. Anthropologically speaking, diminished size and stature, it could be assumed, contributes to higher survival rates. High populations, and the difficulty of supplying adequate nutrition, could mean that those smaller individuals would be more likely to survive in times of drought, or famine.