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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


    • Jul 7, 2022 LATEST EPISODE
    • weekdays NEW EPISODES
    • 5m AVG DURATION
    • 2,148 EPISODES

    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

    How Did Roe v Wade Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 7, 2022 8:17

    The Supreme Court's ruling in Roe v Wade in 1973 guaranteed national rights to some types of abortions. Learn how the case was decided and how it was overturned in this episode of BrainStuff, based on these articles: https://money.howstuffworks.com/10-overturned-supreme-court-cases.htm; https://people.howstuffworks.com/famous-supreme-court-cases.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Why Are Mass Shootings Happening in U.S. Schools?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 2, 2022 6:41

    Beyond the U.S. gun control debate, another question deserves examination: Why are schools so frequently the sites of mass gun violence in America? We explore the psychology and potential solutions in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/why-do-school-shootings-keep-happening-in-us.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Has Grandma Gatewood Inspired Generations of Hikers?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jul 1, 2022 6:25

    At the age of 67, Emma Gatewood became the first woman to hike the Appalachian Trail alone in a single season. Learn her story in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-figures/grandma-gatewood.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Should You Turn the Air Conditioner Off While You're Out?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 30, 2022 5:51

    Turning your AC's temperature setting up a few degrees can save a lot of money, but turning the unit off isn't usually necessary. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://home.howstuffworks.com/green-living/should-turn-ac-up.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    What Did People Feed Babies Before Formula?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 29, 2022 8:03

    Infant formula mimicking breastmilk was only invented in the past 150 years, but babies have been hungry forever. Learn what caregivers used to do when breastmilk was unavailable in this episode of BrainStuff: https://health.howstuffworks.com/pregnancy-and-parenting/baby-health/infant-health/infant-formula-history.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Did the Mona Lisa Get So Popular?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2022 5:58

    Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa is a technical masterpiece, but the portrait wasn't famous until centuries after its creation. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/arts/artwork/mona-lisa.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Magpies Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 28, 2022 6:13

    Magpies, though sometimes maligned, are fascinating birds that can recognize themselves in mirrors and have funerary practices. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/birds/magpie.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Are Wine Glasses Getting Bigger?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 25, 2022 4:23

    People are drinking more wine than they used to. Could the ever-increasing size of wine glasses be behind this trend? Learn how today's average serving stacks up against history's in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://recipes.howstuffworks.com/food-facts/much-does-favorite-wine-glass-hold.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Does Your Cat Lick You?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 24, 2022 5:40

    If your cat licks you, you may have wondered: Are they trying to groom you? Are they being affectionate? Do you has a flavor?? Learn about cats' licking behavior in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/pets/why-does-cat-lick-me.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Heat Officers Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 23, 2022 6:24

    Cities around the world are appointing Heat Officers to identify dangers and help protect citizens from rising temperatures. Learn how these officials work in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/nature/climate-weather/atmospheric/chief-heat-officers-news.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Were Common Currency Symbols Invented?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 22, 2022 6:36

    The symbols for the dollar ($), euro (€), rupee (₹), and pound (£) are everywhere, but how did they come to be? Learn the history behind these symbols in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://money.howstuffworks.com/currency-symbols.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Prehab Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 21, 2022 6:06

    If rehab helps patients recover after a surgery, prehab helps patients get ready for that recovery beforehand. Learn how prehabilitation works in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/medicine/surgeries-procedures/prehab-before-surgery.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do U.S. Gun Background Checks Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 20, 2022 8:55

    The U.S. House has passed legislation that would mandate more background checks during gun sales, but these bills (H.R. 8, H.R. 1446, and the Protecting Our Kids Act) are stuck in the Senate. Learn more about how they would change the law in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/hr8-gun-background-checks-news.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Introducing: Bloomberg Crypto

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 12, 2022 1:41

    Crypto is the world's hottest financial trend. Digital tokens like Bitcoin and NFTs have moved from niche products to showing up in Super Bowl commercials and song lyrics. Advocates of these new asset classes promise they will democratize the finance industry, and they hail the blockchain technology that backs it all as the future of computing. Skeptics say it's another financial house of cards. No newsroom on the planet is better equipped than Bloomberg to cut through all the noise and provide clarity, context and authority. In this new daily podcast, Bloomberg's reporting team will tease out what's actually important in the crypto conversation. Led by crypto expert Stacy-Marie Ishmael, the podcast will draw on reporters in every region and credible voices in the industry to cover everything from regulation to alt coins to DeFi, and even the environmental impact of the currency that promises to change the finance landscape indefinitely. Listen to Bloomberg Crypto on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. https://www.iheart.com/podcast/1308-bloomberg-crypto-97453276/ See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Why Do Dogs Love Rolling in Stinky Stuff?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 11, 2022 3:51

    Dogs are pretty much guaranteed to find the smelliest stuff to roll in -- but why? Learn what may be behind this gross instinct in today's episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/pets/dogs-love-rolling-in-stinky-stuff.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do the Santa Ana Winds Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 10, 2022 6:39

    The Santa Anas are winds that sweep hot air over Southern California, both clearing the air and exacerbating wildfires. Learn how they work in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/nature/climate-weather/atmospheric/santa-ana-winds.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Old Are Alligators?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 9, 2022 4:03

    It turns out that as a species, alligators have remained unchanged for millions of years longer than anyone knew. Learn how researchers discovered this in today's episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/reptiles/alligator-species-8-million-years-old.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Are Airplane Cabins Pressurized?

    Play Episode Listen Later Jun 8, 2022 6:17

    Cabin pressure systems haven't changed much over the decades, but the controls for them have gotten safer and more sensitive. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/transport/flight/modern/airplane-cabin-pressure.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Why Does Skin Tan and Freckle?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 22, 2022 4:43

    When you freckle or tan, your skin is trying to protect you from damage. Learn how it works in this episode of BrainStuff. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Echidnas Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 21, 2022 5:37

    Echidnas are spiny, toothless, egg-laying mammals -- and they only get weirder from there. Learn more about them in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/echidna.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    What Can You Do When You Run Out of Baby Formula?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 20, 2022 6:49

    When a shortage of baby formula strikes, health-care providers and a number of organizations can help. Learn who to contact, and what switches in formula are safe for babies, in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://lifestyle.howstuffworks.com/family/parenting/babies/baby-formula-shortage-news.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Bidets Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 17, 2022 6:57

    The most popular modern bidet was invented in the U.S., so why hasn't this technology caught on here? Learn the history of the bidet in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://home.howstuffworks.com/bidet.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    What's the Tallest Mountain in the Solar System?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 16, 2022 4:20

    Even though Earth is the largest rocky body in our solar system, we don't have the largest mountain -- not by a long shot. Learn how Mars took the title in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/tallest-mountain-in-solar-system.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Are Chimps Cleaner Than Us?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 15, 2022 3:43

    A study investigating the microbes and bugs in chimpanzee beds versus human beds showed that chimps are cleaner than we are. Learn about the study's results in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/bed-has-more-poop-than-chimps.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    If You Can Be Disgruntled, Can You Be Gruntled?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 14, 2022 7:51

    Some words like 'disgruntled' and 'ineffable' -- informally called lonely negatives -- don't have a positive counterpart in English. Learn how a few of them came to be in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/lonely-negative.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Snakes Mate?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 13, 2022 6:34

    Snakes have several fascinating reproductive tricks up their sleeves (scales?). Learn about the wild world of dual penises, delayed fertilization, egg incubation, and mating balls in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/snakes/how-do-snakes-mate.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Did Manifest Destiny Shape America?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 6, 2022 8:52

    Manifest Destiny was the idea that European colonists in the early U.S. had a God-given duty to expand across the continent. Learn how it worked then and continues today in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/manifest-destiny-america.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Do Coconut Crabs Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 5, 2022 6:33

    The coconut crab is the world's largest land-dwelling arthropod -- they grow longer than your average dog and can open coconuts with their claws. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://animals.howstuffworks.com/marine-life/coconut-crabs.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Is May 4th a Star Wars Holiday?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 4, 2022 4:32

    The first instance of "May the Fourth be with you" was a celebration of politics, not fandom. Learn more about this history of Star Wars holidays in May in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/why-exactly-is-may-4th-a-star-wars-holiday.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Who Built Ohio's Serpent Mound?

    Play Episode Listen Later May 3, 2022 4:27

    The Serpent Mound, a vast effigy built on a meteorite crater's edge in what's now Ohio, may be 900 years old -- or much older. Learn what we know and don't know in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/archaeology/ohio-serpent-mound.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Anhedonia Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 29, 2022 4:25

    Anhedonia is a mental health condition where normally pleasurable things, from music to food to conversation to touch, don't feel good anymore. Learn what we're still learning about it in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/mental-health/mental-disorders/anhedonia.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    If Birds Can Perch, Why Can't Drones?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 28, 2022 4:05

    Designing drones that can land and perch anywhere would be really useful, but it's harder than it may sound. Learn how researchers have pulled it off in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/perchiing-drones-news.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Is It Dangerous to Bathe During a Thunderstorm?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 27, 2022 3:30

    Myths about lightning abound, but this one is true: It's safest to avoid running the taps during a thunderstorm. Learn why in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/nature/climate-weather/storms/dangerous-to-bathe-during-thunderstorm.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Is Bugs Bunny a Rabbit or a Hare?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 26, 2022 5:00

    Bunnies and hares have a number of distinct traits -- as does Bugs himself. Learn whether he leans rabbit or hare in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/bugs-bunny-rabbit-or-hare.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Should the U.S. Switch to Permanent Daylight Savings Time?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 25, 2022 8:37

    Switching to Daylight Savings Time gives us an extra hour of sunlight in the evenings during Spring and Summer months -- but is it helpful or hazardous? Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/geophysics/permanent-daylight-saving-time-news.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Does Playing with Toy Guns Lead to Violent Behavior?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 24, 2022 7:28

    Some parents and advocacy groups recommend against allowing children to play with toys that resemble weapons. But is there any science to back that up? Learn about play, parenting, and aggression in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/mental-health/human-nature/behavior/playing-with-toy-guns-lead-to-actual-gun-violence.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Holly Frey In Conversation With Seneca Women to Hear Winner: Naibe Reynoso

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 23, 2022 5:43

    Holly Frey, host of Stuff You Missed in History Cass, sits down with Naibe Reynoso, one of the ten winners of Seneca Women to Hear: Search for the Next Great Female Podcasters See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: What's the History of Lemonade?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 23, 2022 5:47

    Who were the first people to drink lemonade? How did it turn pink? Learn the folklore behind lemonade in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://recipes.howstuffworks.com/what-is-history-lemonade.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Where Did the Phonetic Alphabet Come From?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 22, 2022 4:14

    As audio technology developed during the 1900s, people realized that they needed a clearer way to communicate terms than spelling them out in the normal alphabet. Learn how the NATO phonetic alphabet (Alfa, Bravo, Charlie, etc.) came to be in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://people.howstuffworks.com/phonetic-alphabet.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Baker's Yeast Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 21, 2022 7:05

    The magic microbe that makes bread rise and beer alcoholic is yeast -- often, the species Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Learn how it works in this episode of BrianStuff, based on this article: https://recipes.howstuffworks.com/tools-and-techniques/yeast.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Did Bessie Coleman Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 20, 2022 6:46

    In 1921, Bessie Coleman became the first Black American woman to earn a pilot's license. Learn about her life and legacy in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/transport/flight/classic/bessie-coleman.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Are Humans Really Worse at Smelling than Dogs?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 18, 2022 4:47

    The idea that humans have a worse sense of smell than other animals is a pervasive myth. Learn the reality in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/human-body/systems/nose-throat/human-sense-smell-good-as-dog.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Should You Really Take Fish Oil Pills?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 17, 2022 5:43

    Conventional wisdom has long said fish oil pills are a great nutritional boost, but recent research shows they don't have the cardiovascular benefits we once thought. Learn who should still consider taking them in this episode of BrainStuff. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: How Can Squid 'Speak' With Their Skin?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 16, 2022 6:11

    Squid can communicate via patterns they flash on their skin, and the way they create those patterns is stranger than anyone thought. Learn what researchers are learning about it in this episode of BrainStuff. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    What's the Most Americans Have Paid for Gasoline?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 15, 2022 8:20

    Gas prices have been high recently in the U.S., but the national average has gone higher (once you account for inflation). Learn how gas pricing works in the U.S. and around the world in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://auto.howstuffworks.com/fuel-efficiency/fuel-consumption/highest-gas-payment.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Earth's Pulse Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 15, 2022 4:46

    Yes, Earth has a pulse: peaks of geologic activity that occur every 27.5 million years, and herald mass extinctions. Learn more in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/earth/geophysics/earths-pulse.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    Why Didn't Russia Sell Alaska to Canada?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 14, 2022 6:36

    In 1867, Russia sold the territory of Alaska to the United States -- a perhaps confusing move, given that Canada was right next door. Learn how it happened in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/american-history/why-didnt-russia-sell-alaska-to-canada.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Can Hay Fever Cause Food Allergies?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 12, 2022 4:04

    It turns out that compounds in some raw fruits and vegetables mimic the compounds that cause seasonal allergies, and thus make you itchy when you eat them. Learn more about oral allergy syndrome in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/diseases-conditions/allergies/food-allergy/information/hay-fever-allergic-fruits.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    How Does Dolores Huerta Work?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 11, 2022 8:46

    In the 1960s, Dolores Huerta worked alongside Cesar Chavez to create the United Farm Workers union and organize for farmworkers' rights across America. Learn more about her legacy and continuing work in this episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-figures/dolores-huerta.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: How Bad Is It to Run Your Car on Empty?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 10, 2022 3:39

    Your car's empty-tank light can sneak up on you, and it's easy to put off filling up for another day. But are you damaging your car when you do? Learn why it's not good to run your car on empty in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://auto.howstuffworks.com/fuel-efficiency/fuel-economy/is-it-bad-to-drive-car-with-nearly-empty-gas-tank.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

    BrainStuff Classics: Do Doctors' Biases Affect Health Care?

    Play Episode Listen Later Apr 9, 2022 6:23

    Implicit biases change the way we act without us even realizing it, and doctors aren't immune. Learn how we can identify and change our unconscious biases in this classic episode of BrainStuff, based on this article: https://health.howstuffworks.com/medicine/healthcare/doctors-biases-health-care.htm See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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