Extraordinary Dairy: What you Might Not Have Known About Lactose Intolerance

Do you know anyone who is lactose intolerant? Chances are, you probably do! That’s because most people are at least slightly lactose intolerant, or may become so with age. But what exactly is lactose intolerance, and why does it seem to affect everyone differently? To find the answer, we can take a look into our genetic makeup and evolutionary history. But first, lets learn a little more about what lactose is and how it interacts with out body. Continue reading

Detox by Re-tox: The Origins of the Bloody Mary and Tabasco’s Tango with Vodka

It was surprising to me to find out that brunch was not an invention of the American South. While excessive drinking and regional cures can be found in other places too, sweet tea and fried chicken are still be the best hangover panaceas for me. For others, a hearty lunch of sandwiches, eggs, pancakes, and various other options is the ticket. The term “brunch” was termed by an Englishman in the 19th century as a meal to relieve the debauchery of the night before…while also allowing dedicated time to revel and reminisce about the prior shenanigans. Alcoholic drinks, or the “hair of the dog”, were served to help numb the effects of the patrons’ hangovers. Whether or not a Bloody Mary is a direct result of brunch is unknown, but now it has become a brunchtime staple. It’s hard to imagine the meal without it. Continue reading

Why Study Food?

I just spent four days attending the American Historical Association annual meeting. I spent my time in sessions and panels about various food-related historical issues. And, I talked to many, many people about food and food studies. I talked to public historians who are interested in sharing history in museums and other public venues. I discussed with interest the role of food in early immigrations in assimilating the next generations. I talked to others about whether the study of food has value. Continue reading