Dinner Plate Invasion: Lionfish, Tiger Shrimp, and Feral Pigs, Oh My! 2020-01-13 11:21:43 Across America, feral pigs are on the rampage, wrecking fields of crops, hunting local wildlife to extinction, and even attacking humans. In the United Kingdom, Japanese knotweed is taking over the landscape: banks deny mortgages to infested properties, and the government regulates its disposal with the same precautions it takes for low-level nuclear waste. Humans ...More â
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Meet the Queen of Kiwi: the 96-Year-Old Woman Who Transformed America's Produce Aisle 2019-12-17 06:39:57 The produce section of most American supermarkets in the 1950s was minimal to a fault, with only a few dozen fruits and vegetables to choose from: perhaps one kind of apple, one kind of lettuce, a yellow onion, a pile of bananas. Today, grocery stores routinely offer hundreds of different fruits and vegetables, many of ...More â
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Meet the Queen of Kiwi: The 96-Year-Old Woman Who Transformed America's Produce Aisle 2019-12-17 06:39:57 The produce section of most American supermarkets in the 1950s was minimal to a fault, with only a few dozen fruits and vegetables to choose from: perhaps one kind of apple, one kind of lettuce, a yellow onion, a pile of bananas. Today, grocery stores routinely offer hundreds of different fruits and vegetables, many of ...More â
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Are Insect Guts the Secret to the Most Delicious Kimchi? 2019-12-03 13:05:59 This side dish of spicy, bubbly, funky pickled vegetables is such a staple in Korea that no meal is considered complete without itâbut, recently, kimchi has found its way into burgers, pasta, grilled cheese, and even tacos. This episode, we trace the behind-the-scenes story of the "kimchi diplomacy" that turned Korea's favorite fermented cabbage into ...More â
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Menu Mind Control 2019-11-18 15:21:41 At its most basic, a menu is simply a way for a restaurant to communicate its offerings and their prices to its customers. But, perhaps even more importantly, says Alison Pearlman, author of a new book on menus called May We Suggest, a menu has to persuade diners that they want what the restaurant is ...More â
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Of Ghost Foods and Culinary Extinction 2019-11-04 17:31:09 The earliest humans favored juicy, meaty mammoth at mealtimes. Ancient Romans loved their favorite herb, silphium, so much that they sprinkled it on everything from lamb to melon. In the 19th century United States, passenger pigeon pie was a cherished comfort food, long before chicken pot pie became commonplace. And, for dessert, Americans a century ...More â
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What's CRISPR Doing in our Food? 2019-10-07 19:12:02 You've probably heard the hype: CRISPR will revolutionize biotech, cure disease, resurrect extinct species, and even create new-and-(not-so)-improved humans. But what is CRISPRâand what's it doing in our food? The first generation of genetically modified crops, or GMOs, were labelled "Frankenfoods" by critics and are banned in the European Union. Can CRISPR succeed where fish-tomatoes ...More â
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Happy Birthday to Us: Gastropod Turns Five 2019-09-24 11:40:20 We launched Gastropod in September 2014, which means we're turning five this month, and that's approximately 100 in podcast years. We're celebrating our birthday with a special episode featuring highlights from the past five years' worth of episodes, as chosen by you, our listenersâserved up alongside a generous slice of cake science and history. Join ...More â
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Celebrate Mexico's True National Holiday with the Mysteries of Mole 2019-09-10 13:27:28 In the United States, Cinco de Mayo is an excuse for margarita-fueled partying. But in Mexico, that dateâthe anniversary of a military triumph over Napoleon on May 5, 1862âis marked by a parade and not much else. The real celebrations happen on September 16, which is Mexican Independence Day. At Gastropod, we're always down to ...More â
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Running on Fumes: Strawberry's Dirty Secret 2019-08-27 10:19:20 This episode, we tell an age-old tale: an innocent young berry heads west to make its fame and fortuneâbut sells its soul in the process. In order for our hero, the strawberry, to defeat its nemesis, a fungus called wilt, the aromatic red fruit makes a deal with the devilâand duly becomes America's favorite berry. ...More â
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Omega 1-2-3 2019-08-12 19:52:30 Based on all the hype, you'd be forgiven for believing that the fish oils known as omega-3s are solution to every problem. Heart disease, dementia, depression, even obesityâthe list of ailments that experts claim a daily dose of omega-3 can help prevent seems endless. And with more than ten percent of Americans taking a capsule ...More â
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Meet Sharbat, the Ancestor of Sorbet, Syrup, Shrub, Sherbet, and Pretty Much Everything Else Cool 2019-08-05 22:42:47 Many of you won't have heard of sharbat, the delightfully tangy, refreshingly icy Persian drink. But most of you will have tasted at least one of its many descendants: sorbet, sherbet, syrup, shrub, and even the julep. So, what is sharbat? How did it inspire so many variations on cooling deliciousness? And how did Persians ...More â
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Super Fry: The Fight for the Golden Frite 2019-06-18 17:50:48 Shoestring, waffle, curly, or thick-cut: however you slice it, nearly everyone loves a deep-fried, golden brown piece of potato. But that's where the agreement ends and the battles begin. While Americans call their fries "French," Belgians claim that they, not the French, invented the perfect fry. Who's right? This episode, we take you right into ...More â
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Eat This, Not That: The Surprising Science of Personalized Nutrition 2019-06-09 22:18:45 This episode, we've got the exclusive on the preliminary results of the world's largest personalized nutrition experiment. Genetic epidemiologist Tim Spector launched the study, called PREDICT, to answer a simple but important question: do we each respond to different foods differently? And, if so, why? How much of that difference is genetic, how much is ...More â
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Guts and Glory 2019-05-21 06:44:55 What does it mean when your stomach rumbles? How do our bodies extract nutrients and vitamins from food? Does what you eat affect your mood? Digestion is an invisible, effortless, unconscious processâand one that, until recently, we knew almost nothing about. On this episode of Gastropod, we follow our food on its journey to becoming ...More â
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BONUS: Introducing Science Rules! with Bill Nye 2019-05-16 06:23:48 We interrupt our regular programming to bring you news of a new podcast you might like. Bill Nye is on a mission to change the worldâone phone call at a time. On his new podcast, Science Rules!, he tackles your questions on just about anything in the universe. Perhaps you've wondered: Should I stop eating ...More â
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The Great Gastropod Pudding Off 2019-05-06 15:44:10 Four bakers, one evening, and one challenge: Who can steam the best spotted dick? On this week's action-packed episode, Tom Gilliford, Selasi Gbormittah, and Yan Tsou of Great British Bake-Off fame, along with honorary Gastropod member (and Cynthia's partner) Tim Buntel, compete to see who can master this most classic of British puddings for the ...More â
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Potatoes in Space! 2019-04-23 12:20:51 Today, a half century after Neil Armstrong took one small step onto the surface of the Moon, there are still just three humans living in spaceâthe crew of the International Space Station. But, after decades of talk, both government agencies and entrepreneurs are now drawing up more concrete plans to return to the Moon, and ...More â
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The Curry Chronicles 2019-04-09 11:47:34 Curry is, supposedly, Indian. But there is no such word in any of the country's many official languagesâand no Indian would use the term to describe their own food. So what is curry? This episode takes us to India, Britain, and Japan on a quest to understand how a variety of spicy, saucy dishes ended ...More â
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The Bagelization of America 2019-03-26 01:12:18 Today, it's a breakfast staple, but, as recently as 1960, The New York Times had to define it for readersâas "an unsweetened doughnut with rigor mortis." That's right, this episode is all about the bagel, that shiny, ring-shaped, surprisingly dense bread that makes the perfect platform for cream cheese and lox. Where did it come ...More â
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Can Diet Stop Alzheimer's? 2019-03-11 13:41:00 Every three seconds, someone in the world develops Alzheimer's disease. It's a devastating disease: millions of people, as well as their caretakers, spend years dealing with disabling disorientation and memory loss. Today, it's the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S. By 2050, an estimated 15 million people in America will have Alzheimer'sâthe combined ...More â
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Seeds of Immortality 2019-03-04 13:22:50 When seeds first evolved, hundreds of millions of years ago, they not only revolutionized the plant world, but they also eventually sowed the path for human civilization. Today, it's nearly impossible to eat a meal without consuming a plant embryoâor many. But how did seeds come to play such a critical role in human history? ...More â
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Pick A Pawpaw: America's Forgotten Fruit 2019-02-26 12:03:58 In 1916, agricultural experts voted the pawpaw the American fruit most likely to succeed, ahead of blueberries and cranberries. But today, most people have never even heard of it, let alone tried it. What is the pawpaw, and how did we forget it? Listen in this episode for a tale that involves mastodons and head-lice, ...More â
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Eating to Win: Gatorade, Muscle Milk, and... Chicken Nuggets? 2019-02-12 13:36:48 Ancient Greek Olympians swore by beans to give them a competitive edge. Japanese sumo wrestlers rely on a protein-rich soup called chankonabe to get into peak condition. And NBA all-stars Kevin Garnett, Carmelo Anthony, and Steph Curry credit their success to a pre-game PB&J. Throughout history, athletes have traditionally eaten something special they hope will ...More â
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Guy's Favorites: What Is Original? As we transition to our new host Manoush Zomorodi, Guy Raz looks back on some of his favorite episodes from his seven years hosting the TED Radio Hour. This episode originally aired on June 27, 2014. When is copying flattery, when is it thievery, and when is it sheer genius? In this hour, TED speakers explore how sampling, borrowing, and riffing make all of us innovators.
#548 Land and Ocean Conservation 101 This week we're talking about land and ocean conservation: what it means to protect our land and oceans, the complexities of competing interests and international boundries, and how well Canada is doing at conserving its most important wild areas. Helping us wrap our heads around it are National Parks Program Director Alison Ronson and National Oceans Program Director Candace Newman from the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS). This episode is hosted by Rachelle Saunders. Related links and resources: 2019 Parks and Protected Areas Report 2019 Oceans Report 2019 Climate Change Report 2019 Successes Blog Aichi Biodiversity Targets IPBES Global...
Body Count Right now, at this very moment, all across the planet, there are 7.6 billion human beings eating, breathing, sleeping, brushing their teeth, walking their dogs, drinking coffee, walking down the street or running onto the subway or hopping in their car, maybe reading a summary of a podcast they're about to hit play on ... and the number is only going up. Everyday 386,000 babies are born (16,000 an hour). We're adding a billion new people every 12 years.
So here's a question you've probably never thought about: Are there more people alive right now than have ever lived on the planet in history? Do the living outnumber the dead? Robert got obsessed with this odd question, and in this episode we bring you the answer. Or, well, answers.
This episode was reported by Robert Krulwich and produced by Annie McEwen and Pat Walters, with help from Neel Danesha. Fact-checking by Michelle Harris. Music and mixing by Jeremy Bloom. Special thanks to Jeffrey Dobereiner.
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