Scientists have been busy studying the oldest preserved human ever found and now they believe to be in the midst of extracting food from his stomach.
Two tourists who were walking through the Otztal Alps of southern Austria in 1991, happened to come across the remains of a human in the ice. The body had some decay so they believed it must have been a mountaineer who had died only recently.
But researchers confirmed when looking at the remains that the body had been there over 5,000 years. Due to the cold weather the body had been preserved amazingly well, therefore, Otzi the Iceman was dubbed the oldest preserved human ever found.
While researchers have looked and studied Otzi in every way you could think of, they had never been able to find his stomach: until they looked at a radiographic and realized his stomach had been pushed up. This meant they had been confusing his lungs with his stomach.
And just like the body, the contents of Otzi’s stomach were amazingly preserved. So now even though he died 5,300 years ago, we now know what he ate for dinner just before his death.
According to the new research that was only published in July in Current Biology, Otzi’s last meal consisted of ibex meat and fat. Also, he ate some einkorn cereals and a little bit of red deer. To make these discoveries the use of advanced cutting-edge science had to be used, the Institute of Mummy Studies in Bolzano, Italy was able to provide the microbiologist tools that allowed it to happen.
They had to thaw out his body enough to allow them to extract the blobby yellow substances from his stomach and then using a chemical analysis on the blobs they were about to reveal exactly what he ate. And it was a remarkably well-balanced meal for someone who lived in a scare and rough Alpine climate.