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"About All You Can Eat" Guide & Resources

In this episode of Scientific American Frontiers, you'll join scientists searching for answers to questions that many people are asking: Do calories count? Why do some of us gain weight so easily? In other stories, scientists explore fascinating aspects of a complex subject close to our hearts and stomachs -- food.

Here are the topics and running times of stories on this show and a brief description of related activities you'll find in this online teaching guide:

  • A Feast at Plimoth (running time: 3:15) -- Pilgrim re-enactors at Plimoth Plantation enjoy a feast, 17th-century style, with Frontiers host Alan Alda. Activities: Feasts in ancient times; Prepare a new world feast.

  • Feast or Famine (running time: 11:58) -- Solving a medical mystery among Native Americans in the Southwest. Activities: Thinking about experiments; Corn in the lives of Native Americans.

  • Truth or Consequences (running time: 8:16) -- Science debunks beliefs about the connection between slow metabolism and obesity. Activity: A calorimeter that measures heat energy in a peanut.

  • Superfoods (running time: 11:25) -- How people of the past made the most of corn, wheat and soy. Activities: A tasty popcorn lab; An acid-base lab to test pH.

  • Mushroom Mania (running time: 7:39) -- Michigan researchers succeed in cultivating the wild morel mushroom. Activities: How much do you know about mushrooms?; Make a spore print.

  • The Bite Stuff (running time: 9:50) -- a new dog food acts as an "edible toothbrush": to clean and combat doggie breath. Activities: Design a snack food (for people); Thought-provoking questions about pet food marketing.


Scientific American Frontiers
Fall 1990 to Spring 2000
Sponsored by GTE Corporation,
now a part of Verizon Communications Inc.