The ‘Social Brain Hypothesis’ is challenged by a new study. The hypothesis was based on the idea that social complexity was the reason behind cognitive complexity in primates. It was believed that evolution of large human brains was due to social pressures.
Dr. James Higham, an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology at New York University (NYU) explained his new findings. His findings are entirely different from Social Brain Hypothesis. It said that diet is the main reason behind big brains of primates and humans. The study was done on 140 primate species. Food Consumption was studied across different species. The other social factors were also studied in parallel.
When the results came out then they discovered diet determines brain size. The results do not showed any association between brain size and fruit or protein consumption. This was at a level of within – species. It is the cognitive demand of different species to eat certain fruits.