We’ve all heard the five-second rule: as long as the food has been on the ground for less than five seconds, you’re safe to eat it. But are you? Birth of an urban myth When it comes to the origin of the five-second rule, stories abound. Genghis Khan often stars in these accounts, with claims it was originally known as the Khan rule. This rule apparently came into play at 13th-century victory banquets when Khan […]
Fish do it, so do reptiles and insects. Mammals – including humans – do it too. The way some birds do it will blow your mind. We’re talking migration. Why do some animals travel around the globe and how do they find their way? And what happens when the habitat they need along the way disappears? Just keep swimming It’s hard to know where to begin when it comes to writing about animal migrations: there […]
Before goji berries, chia seeds and spirulina, there was honey. The second sweetest thing found in nature, honey is the original superfood. Not only is it extremely tasty, honey has been used in medicine since ancient Egyptian times. What is it about honey that makes it so special? The magic of bee vomit The earliest written reference to honey hails from about 2000 BC: a Sumerian clay tablet refers to its use as a drug and […]
We’ve all heard about ‘clever’ animals... learning to use tools, communicate complex information and solve problems. But can animals count?
It’s late, you’re exhausted, and you’re craving chips. Most of us have experienced midnight munchies, but what makes fatty, salty and sweet foods particularly appealing at night?
You’re probably aware that going to the supermarket when you’re hungry is a bad idea. Research published back in 1969 showed that people tend to buy more food if they hadn’t eaten recently and were hungry. But that’s not the only way hunger affects the choices we make.
Will wearing red help you pick up? Do sports team dressed in black play more aggressively? Are good guys in movies often dressed in white? We all have instinctive responses to colours and in the case of food packaging, marketers are very keen to exploit them.
2024: the first human crew of four will set out on their 7-month one-way trip to Mars. They will establish a human outpost on this inhospitable planet and be joined by four new people every two years. This is the mission of Mars One. But are we really sure Earth-based technology can keep them alive?
Bees have long been famous for their “waggle dance”, a series of moves telling other bees where good food can be found. But do you know just how intricate this dance is? It turns out bees have a complex language and we know how to eavesdrop onto their conversations.
We have known for a long time that eating less (much less) can prolong life in many animals. Given fasting diets are currently all the rage, I decided to investigate the science. Is fasting also good for humans?