Better off as Hunter Gatherers?

No, not really. Yours survivial totally depended if you was able to find food. If not you was screwed. And there was extrmely high mortality level and basically no one couldn't live old age. Thirty years old was considered as old. Yours only security is only just yours own tribe, nothing else. And if you got sick or injured you probably just would die quickly and painfully. Yes, there would be lesser pollution and violence but it hardly is worth of dying young from reasons where you probably wouldn't die on modern society.
Infant mortality in hunter-gather societies makes the average life expectancy of 30 years seem low.
A lot died before the age of 5 but if you lived past that you had a good chance to live into old age.
They tended to be spread out over larger areas so had less contact with each other so less disease transmission.
It takes more work to grow crops than to hunt and gather until mechanised farming comes long.
People start farming when become harder to find food and it becomes worth the extra effort to grow the crops.
Hunter gathers lived just as long as modern humans. the difference is now fewer people die when they are young.
Farming supports much higher population densities and makes the devolvement of cities possible.
The downside to early cities is the more crowded conditions leads to more infectious diseases spreading in the relatively crowded conditions.
 
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Infant mortality in hunter-gather societies makes the average life expectancy of 30 years seem low.
Its actually very reasonable if not high, when you consider infant mortality of 30%+ ( death before 10 ), danger of childbirth, accident etc. Got to remember also the estimated average for the Roman Empire is normally put around only 25.
 
Infant mortality in hunter-gather societies makes the average life expectancy of 30 years seem low.
A lot died before the age of 5 but if you lived past that you had a good chance to live into old age.
They tended to be spread out over larger areas so had less contact with each other so less disease transmission.
It takes more work to grow crops than to hunt and gather until mechanised farming comes long.
People start farming when become harder to find food and it becomes worth the extra effort to grow the crops.
Hunter gathers lived just as long as modern humans. the difference is now fewer people die when they are young.
Farming supports much higher population densities and makes the devolvement of cities possible.
The downside to early cities is the more crowded conditions leads to more infectious diseases spreading in the relatively crowded conditions.
What kept HG populations in check? If they were living so healthy why didn't their populations grow more?
 
No, not really. Yours survivial totally depended if you was able to find food. If not you was screwed. And there was extrmely high mortality level and basically no one couldn't live old age. Thirty years old was considered as old. Yours only security is only just yours own tribe, nothing else. And if you got sick or injured you probably just would die quickly and painfully. Yes, there would be lesser pollution and violence but it hardly is worth of dying young from reasons where you probably wouldn't die on modern society.
Infant mortality in hunter-gather societies makes the average life expectancy of 30 years seem low.
A lot died before the age of 5 but if you lived past that you had a good chance to live into old age.
They tended to be spread out over larger areas so had less contact with each other so less disease transmission.
It takes work to grow crops than to hunt and gather until mechanised farming comes long.
People start farming when become harder to find food and it becomes with the extra effort to grow the crops.
Hunter gathers lived just as long as modern humans. the difference is now fewer people die when they are young.
Farming supports much higher population densities and makes the devolvement of cities possible.
The downside to early cities in the more crowded conditions leads to more infectious diseases spreading in the relatively crowded conditions.
I remember I heard once that people back then were thought not to live old because the bones of, say a 60-year-old looked like those of a 40-year-old modern human. I think the problem is that many people speak of life expectancy at birth instead of longevity. So yes, because of child mortality, accidents, tribal wars etc. life expectancy at birth wasn't that high but the older you grew, the more chances you had to live to a ripe old age. This study for instance says the average death age for hunter-gatherers was 72.
 
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I remember I heard once that people back then were thought not to live old because the bones of, say a 60-year-old looked like those of a 40-year-old modern human. I think the problem is that many people speak of life expectancy at birth instead of longevity. So yes, because of child mortality, accidents, tribal wars etc. life expectancy at birth wasn't that high but the older you grow, the more chances you had to live to a ripe old age. This study for instance says the average death age for hunter-gatherers was 72.
It's the modal age, not average or median. The actual average is lower.
There is some variability among groups. Among traditional huntergatherers, the average life expectancy at birth (e0) varies from 21 to 37 years, the proportion surviving to age 45 varies between 26 percent and 43 percent, and life expectancy at age 45 varies from 14 to 24 years (Figure 1; Table 2 and Figure 3).
 
What kept HG populations in check? If they were living so healthy why didn't their populations grow more?
Well higher child mortality meant less people reached adulthood - though those who did were healthier - and there's also the risk of accidental death once you were an adult.
I disagree with the views on medical knowledge and childbirth btw. People back then used plants for medicine - just like modern-day Indigenous people for instance - and contrary to what is sometimes believed, sick and old people were properly cared for; and childbirth mortality, although it did happen of course, wasn't as high as one could think (otherwise, I don't think humankind would have survived through all those millenia!). Actually, in more recent times (I'm speaking of the Middle Ages and the centuries after), the women who had most risk of dying in childbirth were noble and (upper) middle-class women because they could afford to be attended to by doctors, who didn't wash their hands and tools o_O. For instance, while making the genealogy of my own family, I found that most women had lots of children (more than ten for some of them) but of all those whose death date I know, only three or four died in childbirth, and they'd had several children before.
 
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It's the modal age, not average or median. The actual average is lower.
There is some variability among groups. Among traditional huntergatherers, the average life expectancy at birth (e0) varies from 21 to 37 years, the proportion surviving to age 45 varies between 26 percent and 43 percent, and life expectancy at age 45 varies from 14 to 24 years (Figure 1; Table 2 and Figure 3).
Corrected and sorry, English isn't my mother tongue and I have to say I'm not sure of the exact meaning of "modal" here. Thought it was a synonym of average.
 
What kept HG populations in check? If they were living so healthy why didn't their populations grow more?
The supply of food and the need to keep moving to find more food limited population growth.
It takes more land to support a population of hunter-gathers than a farming population.
 
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If compared to neolithic farming H-G lifestyle was likely not worse. Main cause of death for men in these societes was violence (among neolithic tribes of New Guinea and Amazon Rainforest up to 60% of men die in inter-tribal wars, hunter-gatherers, like Inuit or Aboriginal Australians, were no better in that regard). Hunter-gatheress seemed to be more fit, but that is propably because only the fittest lived to adulthood, while deformed farmers' child has better chance to survive.
 
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What kept HG populations in check? If they were living so healthy why didn't their populations grow more?
Many HG continue to let children suckle milk until 4-5 years old. These effectively contraception. Agriculture faster growth can be attributed to better milk substitute.
 
The supply of food and the need to keep moving to find more food limited population growth.
It takes more land to su[port a population of hunter-gathers than a farming population.
And diffence is massive, population density for farmers is orders of magnitude higher than for H-G, outside of few places, like Pacific Northwest or California, which could support large populations of hunter-fisher-gatherers.
 
Well higher child mortality meant less people reached adulthood - though those who did were healthier - and there's also the risk of accidental death once you were an adult.
I disagree with the views of medical knowledge and childbirth btw. People back then used plants for medicine - just like modern-day Indigenous people for instance - and contrary to what is sometimes believed, sick and old people were properly cared for; and childbirth mortality, although it did happen of course, wasn't as high as one could think (otherwise, I don't think humankind have survived through all those millenia!). Actually, in more recent times (I'm speaking of the Middle Ages and the centuries after), the women who had most risk of dying in childbirth were noble and (upper) middle-class women because they could afford to be attended to by doctors, who didn't wash their hands and tools o_O. For instance, while making the genealogy of my own family, I found that most women had lots of children (more than ten for some of them) but of all those whose death date I know, only three or four died in childbirth, and they'd had several children before.
Broadly correct, though senicide was practiced in quite a few hunter-gathering and low-tech agricultural societies.
 
Too many people here are focused only on the material part of the equation.

Unless you're full on pure Marxist or Materialist, you should know that isn't all that matters.
 
Well higher child mortality meant less people reached adulthood - though those who did were healthier
Childhood mortality rates were high in farming societies as well.
I disagree with the views of medical knowledge and childbirth btw. People back then used plants for medicine - just like modern-day Indigenous people for instance - and contrary to what is sometimes believed,
I don't understand the romantization of this "medicine", far fewer people defend European medieval practices or "Chinese medicine" which when you hear about it obviously doesn't even begin to make sense from a scientific perspective and yet "indigenous medicine" or apparently HG medicine is just fine.
sick and old people were properly cared for;
They were obviously cared for but we are talking about pre-industrial people which lived in general resource scarcity, people on the move had to make compromises and they couldn't afford to live a less strenuous lifestyle just because of weaker members of society.
and childbirth mortality, although it did happen of course, wasn't as high as one could think (otherwise, I don't think humankind have survived through all those millenia!).
40% is what's attested for countless farming societies for youth mortality, so if it was even higher than that in HG societies it was hardly low.
Actually, in more recent times (I'm speaking of the Middle Ages and the centuries after), the women who had most risk of dying in childbirth were noble and (upper) middle-class women because they could afford to be attended to by doctors, who didn't wash their hands and tools o_O.
Please provide actual proof of this, also what makes you think that doctors magically had less knowledge about sanitary practices compared to non-doctors?
 
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