I'll get right to the point: humans living in a non-industrialized setting tend to be lean, regardless of how much meat they eat. This applies equally to hunter-gatherers, herders, and farmers.
One of the leanest populations I've encountered in my reading is the 1960s Papua New Guinea highland farmers of Tukisenta. They ate a nearly vegan diet composed almost exclusively of sweet potatoes, occasionally punctuated by feasts including large amounts of pork. On average, they ate very little animal food. Visiting researchers noted that the residents of Tukisenta were "muscular and mostly very lean", and did not gain fat with age (1, Western Diseases, Trowell and Burkitt, 1981).
|!Kung man gathering mongongo fruit/nuts. |
From The !Kung San, by Richard B. Lee.
Read more »