Science & Society

The Bite That Kills

Summer is finally here and for some of us, the sweat-inducing humidity and high electrical bills are the least of our worries. Mosquito bites are inevitable for nearly anyone who ventures outside, but unfortunately the blood-sucking insects display a definite preference for their victims. And while multiple bites can be an itchy nightmare for those […]

Trans Fats’ Last Stand

Forrest Gump famously told us that “life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.” And while life does throw us curveballs we still need to be wary of that box of chocolates, among other processed foods. A danger of eating prepackaged and processed foods is the cleverly hidden and […]

Desalination Complication

As a born-and-raised Californian now living in the Midwest, I’ve recently experienced a lot of new things for the first time: toasted ravioli, friendly strangers and, most importantly, seasons. But surprisingly I’ve adjusted faster than I could have predicted, to the point that when it’s constantly raining here in St. Louis and all the greenery […]

Friendly Eyes

Anyone with a dog or who has spent time around a dog knows the power of the ‘puppy eyes’ well. It’s that piercing look, topped with expressive eyebrows that make you say, “Sure Fido, you can have some of my filet mignon, most of the bed space, and half of the couch.” It’s a look […]

What Is “Natural”?

Michael Pollan recently wrote a piece in The New York Times discussing why nothing is truly natural anymore. I don’t always agree with Pollan’s views, but this piece resonated, as this idea has been tossed around quite frequently. Pollan spoke about the word ‘natural’ in context of the food industry, but the argument has much […]

Seize The Decay

We’ve all been there: holding the fridge door open as we cast a skeptical eye over that 4-day old package of meat, wondering if it’s still good or if maybe we’re better off throwing it out and ordering a pizza for dinner. I personally try and do the majority of my grocery shopping on the […]

Science Shaming

As a researcher and dilettante science blogger, I come across a lot of things on the Internet I find irritating: poorly written papers, inaccurate methods, unsubstantiated scientific claims, ‘nutrition bloggers,’ and so on. Hilarious science writer Adam Ruben posted a piece a few months back titled ‘How to P*ss Off a Scientist,’ where he listed […]

Science’s Three-Way Split

It’s no secret the general public is not always in agreement with scientists, but a recent study from the Pew Research Center shows just how divisive certain issues can be. [Editor’s note: See also Matthew Lawder’s post on this same topic, “Science vs. The People.”] In August 2014 approximately 2,000 adults across the country were […]

Science vs. The People

Washington University in St. Louis’ Dean of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Barbara Schaal, was recently announced as the President-Elect of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), beginning her term Feb. 17. The AAAS’ mission is to “advance science, engineering, and innovation throughout the world for the benefit of all people.” As AAAS’s president, […]

The Antibiotic Re-Think

Foregoing antibiotics in farm animals has become a recent trend among the uber health conscious, now trickling down to the masses. McDonald’s announced this month that the company is making moves to phase out their use of chickens grown on human antibiotics within the next two years. This is a huge step in the food […]