Why Legal Weed Isn't Much Safer Than a Dime Bag

Despite its new-found legality at the state level, the buds you buy in medical marijuana dispensaries aren't that different than the dime bags you used to score on the street corner—they share the same wild swings in potency, chemical content, and fungal and pesticide contamination. That's very not good. » 12/03/14 3:08pm 12/03/14 3:08pm

From Ice Cream to Toothpaste: Seaweed's Hidden Uses

The humble seaweed may best be known for its ability to encase morsels of sticky rice and raw fish (not to mention spa-goers) but this plant-like organism has slowly worked its way into an impressive variety of human industries over the past 15 centuries. Now one can find seaweed, or at least one of its many prized… » 10/28/14 3:53pm 10/28/14 3:53pm

Why You Definitely Shouldn't Drink Your Own Pee

During his 127-hour ordeal under that boulder, backpacker Aaron Ralston resorted to consuming his own urine in order to stay alive before eventually hacking off his own forearm and escaping. This was an extreme survival case, and pretty much the only time you should even consider drinking from your own spigot. Here's… » 10/22/14 2:35pm 10/22/14 2:35pm

What Are Artificial Sweeteners Really Doing to Our Bodies?

They're what stimulate your sweet tooth without adding girth to your waistline; they give diet colas and sugar-free snacks a saccharine kick without the consequences. At least that's the idea. But these sweeteners have been the subject of hoaxes and misinformation for years, slowly discrediting their wondrous health… » 10/08/14 2:35pm 10/08/14 2:35pm

Why the Human Body Can't Handle Heavy Acceleration

Our bodies are surprisingly resilient in many situations, but rapid acceleration is not one of them. While the human body can withstand any constant speed—be it 20 miles per hour or 20 billion miles per hour—we can only change that rate of travel relatively slowly. Speed up or slow down too quickly and it's lights… » 10/01/14 2:20pm 10/01/14 2:20pm

How the Enormous Mirrors on the World's Largest Telescope Are Made

The Giant Magellan Telescope is easily the most ambitious terrestrial astronomy program humanity's ever devised. It has—quite literally—been built from the ground up by leveraging a brilliant, unique off-axis design and bleeding-edge fabrication techniques. And nowhere is that more apparent than in the telescope's… » 9/03/14 2:15pm 9/03/14 2:15pm

How Antiperspirant Works (And Who It Might Hurt)

You only need to walk down your supermarket's personal care aisle to understand how big of a business the selling of deodorant and antiperspirant has become in the US, totaling over $2 billion in U.S. sales last year alone. But do you know what's actually in the stuff you roll on (hopefully) every morning? » 8/20/14 1:50pm 8/20/14 1:50pm

Why E-Cigarettes Might Not Be as Safe as You Think

It's little wonder why e-cigarettes' popularity has exploded into a $2 billion industry over the last few years; the promise of safe, harmless nicotine delivery without all the carcinogenic byproducts of looseleaf combustion is a hard offer to pass up. But are these devices and the nicotinated fluids they atomize… » 8/13/14 12:30pm 8/13/14 12:30pm

What the Heck Is Toothpaste Anyway?

It's been part of humanity's hygiene regimen for more than 4,000 years, but have you ever stopped to think what's actually in the stuff you're smearing across your teeth? The ingredients of modern toothpaste may read like a mad scientist's shopping list, but they're far better than what our ancestors had to endure for… » 8/05/14 2:20pm 8/05/14 2:20pm

How the "10 Percent of Our Brains" Myth Started (And Why It's Wrong)

Morgan Freeman can make anything sound legit no matter scientifically implausible. In Lucy for example, which premiered last Friday, his character cites the "fact" that humans only use about 10 percent of our brain's resources. This is very, very wrong! But why does it keep getting tossed around? And how much of our… » 7/29/14 12:00pm 7/29/14 12:00pm