According to the Query Monitor plugin, Wordpress is calling four queries for the last 10 posts in the database, starting with this to know the IDs:
SELECT SQL_CALC_FOUND_ROWS wp_posts.ID FROM wp_posts WHERE 1=1 AND wp_posts.post_type = 'post' AND (wp_posts.post_status = 'publish' OR wp_posts.post_status = 'private') ORDER BY wp_posts.post_date DESC LIMIT 0, 10
The below and two other will then follow:
SELECT wp_posts.* FROM wp_posts WHERE ID IN (29,27,26,25,24,23,22,21,20,18)
I'm using a custom template so I don't need this, is there a way to disable it?