Anonymous asked: uh you should probably draw a bird watching a person with tiny bird binoculars yeah that sounds like a good idea
"Caramel macchiato for ████ Pilgrim".
Anonymous asked: you seem to know a bunch about science. did that come from going to school for science or is was it independent reading? do you read journal articles even though you're done with undergrad?
Well thank you, but I don’t think I know that much about science. I guess I just passionately talk about it? Also, it helps that I’m on a computer and can double check my facts when writing a post. Please don’t think I have an encyclopedia for a brain! If I post anything about science that isn’t super basic, I can guarantee that I’ll have 10+ tabs open on my browser of related research.
But I do keep up on science to a certain degree! There’s a huge number of science tumblrs that summarize articles and discuss them. I should post a few of them, but I don’t really have a list. On top of that the science subreddit is fun to look through. Not only do new articles get posted, but Ph.D. students and grads will frequently discuss the article in the comments section.
I also love science news and pop culture science, so the BBC’s health and science sections have great articles that are not sensationalist or presumptuous. Additionally, I love the podcasts Science Friday and Stuff You Should Know, because they do a really good job of keeping many random subjects very interesting.
I also like to read current science books, occasionally. Right now I’m reading “Do You Believe in Magic” by Paul Offit. It’s about how the alternative medicine industry. Since the 1994 "snake oil" act, a lot of dietary supplements and alternative medical practices remain untested. This book tackles the issue with that, because while there are cases of alternative medicine helping people out, there are definitely cases of the alternative medicine industry exploiting the fact that they don’t have to prove the safety or effectiveness of their products.
Anonymous asked: how do you feel about high fructose corn syrup?
That one is actually pretty interesting and shrouded in pluses and minuses! I’m not sure how I feel about it. So HFCS is actually a mixture of fructose and glucose, and apparently this is pretty good for food chemistry. The ratio between the two can help alter the recipe and make certain things “better” tasting. It’s a clever tool for food production, and it theoretically shouldn’t be any worse than glucose and fructose (that’s definitely subject to debate), there are some issues I have with HFCS.
For one, it’s dominating the market in America due to tariffs, not due to being cheaper and easier to produce. So the obsession with HFCS in America is largely driven by just having really cheap corn around. And I’m not sure it’s so great for the food market to be so homogenous on its ingredients.
Additionally, HFCS can be manipulated to be sweeter and non-sweeter than standard table sugar depending on the glucose/fructose ratio. So, while it can be essentially the same as natural sugars when it comes to calories? I think that food companies exploit HFCS’s ability to make things sweeter to introduce “empty” calories that don’t satiate appetite into the American diet.
I’ve read studies about how HFCS was related to non-fatty liver diseases, but apparently that may be moot, as the link could be just due to simply eating a lot of sugar.
So while I do think that HFCS is not necessarily bad for you chemical wise and calorie wise, I have concerns about how it’s sweetness could be manipulating people to consume more sugar. I mean, it doesn’t matter if HFCS’s chemical structure is harmless if the taste of it is giving a lot of people bad eating habits. I would definitely prefer that there was less of it in the corn-obsessed food culture of America