The word vitamin has only been around for just over 100 years. But today vitamins are a $36 billion dollar-a-year industry. On today’s show, we’ll look at the history and science behind a largely unregulated market. Plus, a new hotline for emotionally distressed teens aims to help teens by communicating in a space where they feel comfortable – via text message.
Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.
The Multi-Billion Dollar, Largely Unregulated, Vitamin Market
- Journalist Catherine Price writes about the history, science, and beliefs surrounding chemicals manufactured and sold without any requirement to prove their safety, efficacy or even composition. Her new book is called Vitamania: Our Obsessive Quest for Nutritional Perfection.
- Catherine's list of resources consumers can use to better understand the supplements they're taking:
- USP Verified,
- NSF Certified
A Text for Help
- Alice Gregory is a freelance writer who wrote about a text based crisis line in her article “R U There?” for The New Yorker.
The Red Car Conspiracy
- In Los Angeles, the story goes that the automobile industry sabotaged the old Red Car electric street car system, by pushing to erect the sweeping elevated concrete freeways that dominate the city. But as Eric Molinsky and Roman Mars from the podcast 99% Invisible found out, the legend of the Red Car’s demise is not entirely accurate.
- You can listen to this story again at PRX.org.
Comedian Paula Poundstone
- We spoke with standup comedian and frequent Wait! Wait! Don’t Tell Me panelist Paula Poundstone to explain what it’s like to be a part of one of NPR’s most popular shows.
- Paula will be performing this Friday at The Music Hall in Portsmouth, and on Saturday at The Waterville Opera House in Waterville, Maine. Find out about all her appearances at her website: PaulaPoundstone.com