Rakka via Flickr Creative Commons

Celiac disease is a serious autoimmune disorder caused by a reaction to a gluten protein affecting one in one-hundred Americans. Despite the low percentage of those intolerant to wheat products, more people are experimenting with the anti-gluten diet and claim to enjoy health benefits like better skin and fewer allergies.  But is this fad just that...or is there some medical substance behind these claims?

Leo Reynolds via flickr Creative Commons

The Saturday show is jam-packed jelly-tight with the best from the Word of Mouth archives. Sit back, relax and let the sweet sounds of this public radio audio sandwich be your weekend treat. On this week's show:

  • Would a mirror change your shopping habits? Michael Moss is investigative reporter for the New York Times and winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting. He told us about some interesting new tactics supermarkets are using to influence shoppers.
  • This Soylent is NOT made of people. A new 'food' product is meant to be the perfect replacment for all your daily nutrients. Lee Hutchinson is senior reviews editor at Ars Technica. He lived on Soylent for a full week, and blogged about the experience.

Brady Carlson, NHPR

This time of year is full of food fests, including a preponderance of Greek fests.

Food is, of course, a central part of Greek culture, and as we found at a festival in Laconia, that means a look at the food can reveal something deeper.

Brady Carlson, NHPR

My toddler, Owen, and I agree on most things when we go out for breakfast. We prefer booth seats over chairs, sharing is always encouraged at the table, and we always go for crayons and coloring books when they're offered.

The one difference? He, being two years old, prizes consistency in his breakfasts - the more similar they are to the last breakfast outing, the better. In fact, he doesn't use the word "breakfast" for these trips - "I wanna go out for pancakes," he says. 

Courtesy Ars Technica

Imagine a world where eating and preparing food was a thing of the past. Sounds like the stuff of science fiction, right? Well, that world might be closer than we think. A new product, Soylent, claims to provide the body with all the nutrients it needs. The creator of Soylent sees it as not only a solution to the inefficiency of producing and preparing food, but potentially the world’s hunger problems.

Lee Hutchinson is senior reviews editor at Ars Technica. He lived on Soylent for a full week, and blogged about the experience.

ratterrel via Flickr Creative Commons

With more than a third of Americans classified as obese, behavioral scientists are experimenting with ways to ‘nudge’ grocery shoppers away from the chips and dip aisle and into the produce section.

Michael Moss is investigative reporter for the New York Times and winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting. He wrote about research going on in American Supermarkets. 

The Vault DFW via Flickr Creative Commons

As the summer winds down, so will demand for lobster and its market price. Maine lobstermen are bemoaning low wholesale prices, but far from shore, say New York City’s Lobster Joint, market price today for a roll is $19…a boiled lobster will cost your $34. Today, the crustaceans are coveted, and symbolic of wealth, class, and extravagant living. Not so long ago, lobster was considered lower than the ocean floor on which it dwells. Here to trace its climb up the social ladder from grub for the poor to high-class delicacy is Daniel Luzer, Web Editor at the Washington Monthly. We found his article, “Low Lobster Got Fancy,” in Pacific Standard.

The Lunch Box Blues

Aug 27, 2013

Associated Press Food Editor and Concord resident J.M. Hirsch talks with Morning Edition about packing quick and easy school lunches that are healthy- and that kids will actually want to eat.

Cheryl Senter

Kids Culinary Arts teaches kids cooking and nutrition during after school programs, vacations and summer camps. The organization works in school districts and towns to get kids cooking and eating healthy foods. Matthew and Nicole Heiter, 11 and nine years old, have become experienced hands in the kitchen. Their mother, Lauren credits Kids Culinary Arts.

Leo Reynolds via flickr Creative Commons

The Saturday show bring you a spectacular mix of the best of Word of Mouth. On this week's show:

  • Joyce Maynard stops by the studio to talk about her new novel After Her, and why the last thing she feels is shame when it comes to her decision to discuss her relationship with J.D. Salinger.
  • Eating Trader Joe's Trash. New Hampshire native and documentary filmmaker Alex Mannis' film Spoils gives a fly on the dumpster account of Brooklynites who forage in the urban jungle of grocery store cast offs.

In this week’s edition of The Hippo, one story begins like this: Have brunch from El Salvador, followed by a Middle Eastern snack, dinner from Thailand, and New England peach pie for dessert.

macalit via Flickr Creative Commons

Got milk tolerance? Only about one-third of adults on earth can properly digest dairy. A project uniting archaeologists, chemists and geneticist is studying the history of milk in Europe, where “lactose persistence”, the ability to digest milk as an adult, is thought to have emerged only seven and a half thousand years ago. There’s been a wave of discoveries suggesting that a number of “lactose hot spots” where ancient humans developed the genetic mutation for tolerating milk –  experienced significant advantages which allowed ancient humans to survive and changed the course of human history.  Mark Thomas is an evolutionary geneticist at University College London and co-founder of LeCHE, a collaborative research project that traces lactose persistence in early Europe.

Brady Carlson, NHPR

Has any human being ever taken part in a buffet and not eaten more than he/she intended? The very concept of "all you can eat" stacks the deck against the diner: if you're not interested in stuffing yourself like a twentysomething's hatchback before a cross-country move, you're probably going to order off of the regular menu. Otherwise, saying yes to a buffet means, as Homer Simpson once put it, "bye bye belt!"

The state is deploying its Rapid Response Team to assist over 1,100 workers set to lose their jobs as two supermarket chains close some of their stores.

Shaw’s is planning to shutter six of its 34 New Hampshire supermarkets, while Stop and Shop is closing all of its stores and gas stations in the state.

sneurgaonkar via Flickr Creative Commons

You may have heard the news earlier this week that taste-testers and scientists in the U.K. sampled the world’s first lab-grown burger.  One food researcher said that the burger tasted “close to meat, but not that juicy”. Another quipped, “what was consistently different was the flavor”. Not a great review for a patty costing somewhere around three hundred and thirty thousand dollars, but you’ve got to start somewhere.  Henry Fountain, science reporter for the New York Times, tells us about the science under the bun.

Business Insider

The NFL preseason kicks off this Sunday in Canton, Ohio, when the Cowboys take on the dolphins at the annual hall of fame game.  The game gives fans the first opportunity in months to get together, warm up the couch, and bust out the beer and snacks. Sabra hummus is making a play to sit alongside chicken wings, nachos and salsa in the billion-plus dollar football food market.  And it’s got a big backer. Sabra hummus is now the official dip of the NFL.

Food Pantry Provides What Food Stamps Can't

Jul 27, 2013
Seacoast Family Food Pantry of New Hampshire

The Seacoast Family Food Pantry began as the Ladies Humane Society in 1816 to assist families of fishermen. Now, it is still serving those in the community who need help. The pantry aids many families with children—and many elders. Jane is a widow living on a fixed income.

“There are a lot of things you can’t buy with food stamps, but down at the pantry, they cover just about everything that you would need in your household,” Jane said.

Leo Reynolds via Flickr Creative Commons

Our favorite content of the week, wrapped up in one audio-licious program. This week, author Chuck Klosterman defines villainy, the Cronut craze catches a Harvard researcher's eye, head transplants are given an examination, robots roll into vinyards, and a pair of hard-partying vegetarians share their take on potato salad (spoiler alert: it's got Doritos in it!)

Brady Carlson, NHPR

Lacto-fermentation has a branding problem. Every person I talked to about this story heard the term, and with visions of rotting milk in their heads, said “hmm… sounds disgusting.”

But if it takes you a little time to get past that initial discomfort, that’s ok with Stephanie Zydenbos-Heino, owner of what’s possibly the only lacto-fermentation business in the state, Micro Mama’s. Her recipes sometimes take six months to finish their work – so she’s used to waiting.

Globalism Pictures via flickr Creative Commons

“Also known as Japanese horseradish or mooli, daikon looks like a bigger, uglier, knobbier parsnip and, if its flavor can be likened to anything, it is reminiscent of a finer, less fiery radish.”

- From the cookbook Cooking Vegetables.

If you have a CSA subscription, chances are you have found a daikon radish in your share recently. Daikon radishes are a staple in Asian cuisine, the name daikon is actually Japanese for "great root." They're a prolific vegetable and can often grow up to 20" in length with a diameter of 4"! Recently, reporter Josh Rogers was the recipient of a rather large daikon radish, and asked: what do you do with this?

Fans Flock To Laconia Jewish Food Festival

Jul 16, 2013
Michael Samuels

NASCAR may have drawn the biggest crowds in central NH last weekend, but it was far from the only event to attract hardcore fans. The social hall at Laconia's Temple B'nai Israel was packed on Sunday, with people and with food.

“I have matzo ball soup in chicken broth,” says Lynn Goodnough. “We have sweet and sour cabbage soup, and we have borscht, a cold beet soup served with sour cream.”

“We've got pastrami over here, tongue over there, and corned beef over there,” her son, Jordan, adds. “The brisket actually sold out in online pre-orders already.”

“Parties don’t throw themselves….” That’s the opening sentiment of Lust for Leaf, a new cookbook and party guide that turns vegetarian fare on its pony-tailed head.


The Cornucopia Project teaches kids to grow food -- and to make a lifetime of healthy eating choices. Susan Ellingwood and her third-graders in Dublin are old hands in their school garden -- which was established with help from the Cornucopia Project.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

With almost 60 farmers markets across the state, demand for local food is growing.  But local farmers still struggle to make a profit growing local food. In fact, about three quarters of all farms in New Hampshire gross less than $10,000 from sales each year.

This is the first installment in our summer business series investigating how a changing market place is affecting New Hampshire farmers.

afagen via flickr Creative Commons

With names like “Fork in the Road”, “Viva La Waffle” and “Truckin’ Good Food”, colorful food trucks have proliferated across American cities over the last decade. Thanks in part to the explosion of social media, which is rapidly changing the way we buy, cook, and learn about food.  Baylen Linnekin is the founder and executive director of the advocacy group ‘Keep Food Legal.' He also created and taught the class “Foodways 2.0: Social Media, Food Trucks and Underground Food”, at American University. AU first offered the course last fall.

Redbeard Math Pirate via Flickr Creative Commons

The National Parks Service has introduced a major change-up to their fifty-nine park locations nationwide. In collaboration with Michelle Obama’s healthy diet initiative, visitors will have the option to choose from a bevy of healthy, fresh meals at each concessionary. The new program gives new variety to those hungry visitors with no other culinary options, and for the twenty-three million people who visit their locations annually, this health-conscious movement will result in the loss of billions of collective calories. Steve Vogel is a reporter for the national staff of the Washington Post where he frequently covers the federal government, and he joined us to tell us a little more about this change.

Food Politics

Jun 24, 2013

Ten years ago, Marion Nestle’s groundbreaking book on how the American food industry influences nutrition and health was met with praise and criticism. Nestle has expanded and revised her influential book, raising questions about the roles of personal and corporate responsibility and finding that the food industry is still encouraging unhealthy behavior in order to make a profit.



E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I understand that, despite the popularity of organic foods, clothing and other products, organic agriculture is still only practiced on a tiny percentage of land worldwide. What’s getting in the way?                                                                                         -- Larry McFarlane, Boston, MA

A Taste of Bike Week

Jun 14, 2013
Abby Kessler / NHPR

The 90th annual Laconia Motorcycle Week has a distinct sound that revs and rattles throughout the Granite State during the nine day rally, but over the years “bike week” has also become known for its unique taste.

“We do a lot of eating at bike week,” Jennifer Anderson, director of the Laconia Motorcycle Week Association, said laughing.

During the event, vendors set up temporary stands along the Loudon racetrack, selling chicken tenders, soft pretzels, fried dough, sizzling pizza and seafood to patrons who watch sports bikes orbit the track.