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Whether the topic is popcorn or particle physics, you can count on BrainStuff to explore -- and explain -- the everyday science in the world around us.

iHeartRadio & HowStuffWorks


    • Sep 5, 2023 LATEST EPISODE
    • weekdays NEW EPISODES
    • 5m AVG DURATION
    • 2,350 EPISODES

    4 from 1,520 ratings Listeners of BrainStuff that love the show mention: love these little, stuff works podcasts, friday news, 158, friday round, things work, news roundup, please bring it back, marshall, feel smarter, snippets, short and to the point, tidbits, short and sweet, brief, cuts, explanations, brain, lauren, slow.



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    Latest episodes from BrainStuff

    What Causes 'New Baby Smell'?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 5, 2023 3:54 Transcription Available


    That sweet-milky-musky scent that newborn babies have is a combination of hundreds of compounds. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://lifestyle.howstuffworks.com/family/parenting/parenting-tips/recreate-new-baby-scent.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Where Was Babylon, and How Did It Fall?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 4, 2023 9:30 Transcription Available


    Over 2000 years ago, Babylon was the largest, wealthiest city in the world -- but it didn't last. Learn about its past, present, and myths in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/history-vs-myth/babylon.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Is There a Best Way to Load the Dishwasher?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 3, 2023 4:33 Transcription Available


    Which way should the plates face? What about the silverware -- handles up or down? Do you need to pre-rinse? Learn how to make your dishwashing machine work its best in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://home.howstuffworks.com/best-way-to-load-dishwasher.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Do Carrots Really Help Your Eyesight?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 2, 2023 4:09 Transcription Available


    Conventional wisdom says that eating carrots will give you better vision, but how true is that? Learn where the idea came from in this classic episode of BrainStuff.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Do Beached Whales Explode Sometimes?

    Play Episode Listen Later Sep 1, 2023 3:32 Transcription Available


    It's best to give deceased beached whales a respectful amount of space because they can explode. Learn how it works in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/beached-whales-explode.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Was Humpty Dumpty Always an Egg?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 31, 2023 7:47 Transcription Available


    The nursery rhyme about Humpty Dumpty (and his wall, and his fall) is omnipresent. But who (or what) was this guy, really? Learn about the weird history of this verse in today's episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/arts/literature/humpty-dumpty.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Peregrine Falcons Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 30, 2023 6:26 Transcription Available


    These birds of prey are one of the fastest animals in the world -- engineers study them to make airplanes more aerodynamic. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/birds/peregrine-falcons-are-one-fastest-animals-alive.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Are Any Superstitions Universal?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 20, 2023 3:44 Transcription Available


    Do you knock on wood or avoid particular numbers? People around the world adhere to superstitions to attempt to change their luck -- and some of those superstitions are remarkably similar. Learn more in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/superstitions-universal-across-cultures.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Why Are Dogs' Noses Wet?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 19, 2023 3:45 Transcription Available


    Dogs' noses are often wet, but why? And does a dry nose mean your pup is sick? Learn what science has to say about dogs' noses in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/pets/why-do-dogs-have-wet-noses.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Does Yoga Make People Emotional?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 18, 2023 7:24 Transcription Available


    If you've ever found yourself swept up in a wave of sadness or anger during, say, Pigeon Pose, you're not alone. Learn more about what we know and don't know about yoga's effects on emotions in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/diet-fitness/yoga/yoga-makes-people-super-emotional-why.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Is Microwave Popcorn Dangerous?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 17, 2023 4:38 Transcription Available


    There used to be safety concerns about some compounds used to flavor popcorn (diacetyl) and to grease-proof microwaveable bags (PFCs). They're mostly not used anymore, but making your own popcorn might still be safer. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/facts/popcorn-lung.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Are Sharks Born?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 16, 2023 7:02 Transcription Available


    Sharks can be hatched from eggs, born live, or hatched in the womb and then born live -- if their siblings don't eat them first. Learn about shark reproduction and birth in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/fish/sharks/shark-pup.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Do We Say 'Close, But No Cigar'?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 15, 2023 5:01 Transcription Available


    When we mean that someone has not quite succeeded, what do cigars have to do with it? Learn the carnival roots of this idiom in today's episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/close-but-no-cigar.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: Nothing Much Happens: Bedtime stories to help you

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 12, 2023 1:04 Transcription Available


    Having trouble sleeping? Join Yoga and meditation teacher Kathryn Nicolai for bedtime stories where nothing much happens to help you relax and sleep peacefully. The stories are a soft-landing spot for your mind. Rather than letting your brain race through the same thoughts you've been chasing all day, we are taking a detour to a calm and comfy place. We tell the story twice and go a bit slower the second time. Listen to Nothing Much Happens: Bedtime stories to help you sleep on the iHeartRadio App or wherever you get your podcasts. https://www.iheart.com/podcast/263-nothing-much-happens-bedti-29945275/  See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Can Used Books Spread Germs?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 6, 2023 6:46 Transcription Available


    Libraries are bastions of knowledge -- but are they also bastions of germs? Short answer: Nope! For the long answer, tune in to this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/used-books-may-be-germy-but-wont-make-you-sick.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Would Psychic Powers Really Cause Nosebleeds?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 5, 2023 5:32 Transcription Available


    You've seen the trope: a character strains their psychic powers and gets a nosebleed to show for it. But would this actually happen if psychic powers were real? Learn the hypothetical science in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/extrasensory-perceptions/psychic-nosebleed-powers-really-happen.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Can You Tell Ravens and Crows Apart?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 3, 2023 4:50 Transcription Available


    Ravens and crows are both large black birds with mythic reputations, but they're easy to tell apart once you know the differences between them. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/birds/american-crows-and-ravens-whats-difference.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Where Do Royalty's Nannies Get Their Training?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 2, 2023 6:34 Transcription Available


    British royals and lots of the world's other prominent families hire their nannies out of one century-old school: Norland College. Learn how it works in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/european-history/norland-college-royal-nannies.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Common Is Male Breast Cancer?

    Play Episode Listen Later Aug 1, 2023 6:36 Transcription Available


    Although it's much more common in women, men get breast cancer, too -- it's not abnormal because we're all mammals, and we all have some amount of breast tissue. Learn about the symptoms and treatments in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/diseases-conditions/cancer/breast/men-breast-cancer.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    health medicine mammals male breast cancer
    Where Did the 'Don't Tread on Me' Flag Come From?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 31, 2023 11:00 Transcription Available


    The Gadsden flag -- with its coiled rattlesnake on a bright yellow field and the words 'don't tread on me' -- has symbolic roots stretching back before the American Revolution. Learn its history in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/revolutionary-war/dont-tread-on-me-flag.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing “Grown-Up Stuff: How to Adult”

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 29, 2023 2:31 Transcription Available


    Hello BrainStuff listeners, Grown-Up Stuff: How to Adult iHeart that we think you'll love.  Ever wish there was a road map to adulthood? Do you find yourself straight-up baffled by terms like 401k, PPO, and fabric softener? Welcome to “Grown-Up Stuff: How to Adult,” a podcast from Ruby, the iHeart Media Branded Audio Studio, dedicated to answering all of your questions about, well, grown-up stuff, like health insurance, weddings, laundry, retirement, credit, finding a home, and all the other things that keep you up at night.  Listen to Grown-Up Stuff: How to Adult on the iHeartradio app, or wherever you listen to podcasts. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Rhodium Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 28, 2023 7:09 Transcription Available


    Rhodium's rarity, industrial usefulness, and straight-up shininess make it one of the most expensive metals on Earth. Learn how it was discovered and more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/rhodium.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Were Unicorns Always Sweet?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 23, 2023 6:16 Transcription Available


    The modern image of the elegant, gentle unicorn is a relatively recent invention. Learn about the history of unicorn myths and legends in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/strange-creatures/unicorn-in-history.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: On the Job, Episode 8

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 22, 2023 14:41 Transcription Available


    We've teamed up with the podcast On the Job to bring you a preview of episode 8: The Tears and Tenacity of A Clown. Brandon Dunn was born into rodeo royalty. And for twenty years he fulfilled his destiny -- until a tragic car accident ended his career. Or nearly ended it. Brandon tells his story of loss and rehabilitation, and welcomes us into the fascinating world of rodeo clowning. Check out Brandon in action here: http://www.roblittle.comSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Could an Underwater Highway Help Save Sea Turtles?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 21, 2023 7:28 Transcription Available


    OK, it's not a literal highway, but the Cocos-Galapagos Swimway is a proposed safety zone for sea turtles and other animals to migrate. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/oceanography/cocos-galapagos-superhighway.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Are Ice Pops Called Quiescently Frozen Confections?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 20, 2023 5:43 Transcription Available


    You won't find the word 'popsicle' on the packaging for some ice pops -- instead, they're called 'quiescently frozen confections'. Learn why this sciencey term is used instead of the more simple one in today's refreshed episode of BrainStuff.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Toucans Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 19, 2023 5:52 Transcription Available


    Toucans' beautiful bills have made them popular in selling everything from breakfast cereal to democracy, but those beaks have a number of other uses. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/birds/toucan.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Is Sweet and Salty Such a Tasty Combo?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 18, 2023 5:05 Transcription Available


    Although it's not universal, a sprinkle of sea salt atop a chocolate chip cookie can make a simple snack transcendent. Learn why our brains dig the combination of salty and sweet in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://recipes.howstuffworks.com/sweet-and-salty-taste-good.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Morse Code Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 17, 2023 7:49 Transcription Available


    Samuel Morse's ingeniously simple code of timed pulses has gone far beyond its original use on telegraph lines to help people communicate in all kinds of media for over a century. Learn more about Morse and his code in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/inventions/morse-code.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: On the Job, Episode 7

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 15, 2023 5:58 Transcription Available


    We've teamed up with the podcast On the Job to bring you a preview of episode 7: Torque Wrenches Are This Girl's Best Friend. Demeny Pollitt is an automotive technician and the founder of Girlington Garage, a woman-run auto garage in South Burlington, Vermont. In operation since 2009, Pollitt's business has not only survived, but thrived. Ms. Pollitt talks about taking the leap to entrepreneurship, entering a male dominated industry, and the joys/challenges of business ownership. WebsiteSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Can Some People Brew Alcohol in Their Guts?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 15, 2023 4:18 Transcription Available


    It's an unpleasant health issue: If your microbiome is off in just the wrong way, your guts can get you drunk without consuming a drop of alcohol. Learn about auto-brewery syndrome in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/diseases-conditions/digestive/brewing-beer-in-belly.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Oysters Make Pearls?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 10, 2023 6:50


    Oysters (and a few other shellfish) create beautiful pearls as a sort of bodily defense mechanism. Learn how it works in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/marine-life/question630.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: How Did a Family Fued Spawn Adidas and Puma?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 9, 2023 4:43


    A battle between two brothers created the second- and third-largest sneaker companies in the world. Learn the story of the brothers Dassler in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-figures/family-feud-that-spawned-adidas-and-puma.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: On the Job, Episode 6

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 8, 2023 12:34


    We've teamed up with the podcast On the Job to bring you a preview of episode 6: Objective Unlocked! Finding work in this economy doesn't have to be arduous. Tune in to hear from Olivia, an Express Employment Professionals Employment Specialist-turned-Operations Manager and one of her Associates, Leon, who she's helped place, to find out how the process has impacted both of their lives.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Much Dirt Do We Eat in a Year?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 7, 2023 4:13


    Even if we don't do it on purpose (which some people do!), all of us eat at least a little dirt every year due to accidental ingestion. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/facts/how-much-dirt-eat-year.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    health dirt everyday science
    How Do Coast Guard Rescue Swimmers Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 4, 2023 7:01


    In the U.S. Coast Guard, a special group called aviation survival technicians train to rescue civilians from harrowing situations by jumping out of helicopters. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/rescue-swimmers.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Do Antidepressants Have Warning Labels About Suicidal Thoughts?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 3, 2023 6:17


    Antidepressants of all kinds help save and improve lives, but many SSRIs carry warnings that they may increase suicidal thoughts, especially in young patients. Learn why it's worth the risk and the conversation in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/medicine/modern-treatments/antidepressants-warnings-suicidal-thoughts.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: What Are Sea Cucumbers?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 2, 2023 5:18


    Besides weird. Or, including weird? Learn some of the strangest features of sea cucumbers in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/marine-life/sea-cucumber-animal-or-vegetableSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Are Fungi Such Great Decomposers?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 30, 2023 6:56


    Fungus gets a bad rap sometimes, but the fungi amongi do incredibly important work breaking down dead stuff. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/life/cellular-microscopic/fungi.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    fungi fungus decomposers
    How Does the Hollywood Sign Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2023 5:56


    The famous Hollywood sign that overlooks Los Angeles is turning 100 this year -- but its longevity wasn't always assured. Learn its history in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/hollywood-sign-birthday.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: On the Job, Episode 5

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2023 6:04


    We've teamed up with the podcast On the Job to bring you a preview of episode 5: Rob Litttle, Cruise Ship Comedian - Key West, FL Rob Little has a very enviable work calendar. As a cruise ship comedian with over 200 outings to his credit, Rob has seen places and ports most of us only dream of. But life aboard the ship isn't all laughter and sunshine. Find out more about his set here (http://www.roblittle.com/) See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Non-Alcoholic Beer Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 14, 2023 8:33


    Low- and no-alcohol beers are now just as tasty as the alcoholic versions thanks to a few advances in brewing technology. Learn the basics of how brewers do it in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://recipes.howstuffworks.com/food-science/brew-non-alcoholic-beer.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Amazon Deliver Stuff So Fast?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 13, 2023 8:53


    E-commerce retailers like Amazon are able to offer next-day or even same-day shipping thanks to highly organized, centralized, data-driven systems of warehousing and transportation. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://money.howstuffworks.com/amazon-fast-delivery.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    What Are the Most Common Birthdays?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 12, 2023 5:42


    It's not your imagination: Some seasons and dates have more birthdays than others. Learn the most and least popular birthdates (and how they're changing) in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/culture-traditions/genealogy/most-popular-birthdays.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    birthdays reproduction everyday science
    BrainStuff Classics: Could We Build A Real Gundam?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 11, 2023 5:40


    Science fiction tells us our future depends on giant, humanoid robots protecting us and punching monsters. But could we really build those machines? Learn how close we are in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/could-build-own-gundams.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Did Al Capone's Mobsters Start a Milk War?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 10, 2023 7:48


    As Prohibition came to an end, Al Capone's mobsters set their sights on the Chicago milk market. Learn about the Milk Wars in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-events/chicago-milk-wars.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Did Tyrannosaurus Rex Have Lips?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 9, 2023 4:32


    For the past hundred years, paleoartists have depicted T. rex with a mouth like a crocodile's -- toothy and lipless. But new research suggests these dinos may have had lizard-like lips. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/dinosaurs/t-rex-lips.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Wolf Packs Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 31, 2023 6:25


    Terms like 'alpha wolf' are misleading -- in the wild, wolf packs are ruled by the wolves' parents, not through a pecking order. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/wolf-pack-mentality.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Einsteinium Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 30, 2023 6:38


    Einsteinium is a heavy, radioactive element that only exists on Earth when humans create it. Learn how it was first discovered and what we're still learning about it in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/einsteinium.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    earth einsteinium
    BrainStuff Classics: How Effective Are Bulletproof Vests?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 28, 2023 4:34


    Bulletproof vests have certainly saved lives, but exactly how bulletproof are they? Learn what they're made of and how they can fail to protect wearers in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/how-bulletproof-are-bulletproof-vests.htmSee omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: On the Job, Episode 4

    Play Episode Listen Later May 27, 2023 6:03


    We've teamed up with the podcast On the Job to bring you a preview of episode 4: If You Build A Pizza Oven, They Will Come. Jake Wright is a self-described rambling pizza rover. After a failed attempt at a career in music production, Jake decided to combine the two things in life that most excite him: pizza and welding. Now, he tows his mobile pizza oven around Texas, making pizzas at music festivals and rodeos.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    texas jake wright

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