Gladiators were vegetarians

When we think about Roman gladiators, so we assume that muscular handsome men gave strength to the diet with a predominance of meat. Our imagination paints dinners consisting primarily of poultry. However, it turned out that this is not true.

There are several sources describing the diet of Roman gladiators, from which it follows that they ate barley bread and olive oil. In addition, a curious fact that the chained slaves and Roman soldiers were given daily 1.3 kg of bread or figs and 262 liters of wine annually; the diet had also the bulbs of plants, turnips and other root crops, legumes and fresh seasonal vegetables. Before the battle the Roman soldiers used a lot of garlic (according to some sources, Luke): it was believed that garlic gives you strength. It is also known that the Greek athletes, the winners of the ancient Olympic games ate nuts, figs, corn and cheese.

In short, many data show that Roman gladiators were vegetarians. Now these assumptions are confirmed. The opening belongs to the Austrian scientist who conducted excavations on the West coast of Turkey, where the ancient city of Ephesus. There are only known to archeologists the cemetery of the gladiators, where he found the remains of more than 70 people. Scientists of the Department of histology and embryology, Medical University of Vienna emphasize that, on the basis of the structure of bones, difficult to specify with precision the weight of the Roman gladiators, but it was enough to just "set proportions between the constituent power".

The fact is that if gladiators ate meat, the amount of strontium and zinc in their bones would be about the same. However, spectral analysis showed that strontium in the bones is much more than zinc, as is usually the case with vegetarians. Historians believe that a vegetarian diet not only did gladiators are strong — the layer of fat served them extra armor, protecting vital organs from edged weapons. In addition, the density of the bones of gladiators was much more than the average person who ate meat.

Thus, research has confirmed the hypothesis that gladiators were vegetarian.


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