4 Jul / 2017

Too Much of a Good Thing: Everyday Toxins

Too Much of a Good Thing

“The dose makes the poison.” What do you think of when you hear that? Perhaps you think of an alchemy class at a fantastical wizarding school or of an infatuation turned into a blinding obsession. Maybe you remember the morning after a weekend bender or a “sugar coma” crash.  What can be harmless, or even beneficial, in certain amounts can become dangerous or deadly when there is too much. Horrific History co-hosts Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender explore cases in history when the everyday things from life can, when overused, have mind-altering, physically debilitating or even deadly effects.


The death of a United States President; visual, auditory and sensory hallucinations; a man who turned blue and a modern problem which was also used as a medieval torture technique, this episode has all the details for which you never thought to ask! What makes fruit pie or a certain kind of chocolate treat can also cause suffocation and kidney failure. What spices your holiday beverage can make you hallucinate, fear impending calamity and was believed to help terminate pregnancies. A metal used in an eyewash to save the vision of newborns born to mothers with gonorrhea and commonly used in jewelry can turn you blue if too much is absorbed by your body. The very same liquid that you drink to avoid dehydration can cause brain damage, coma or death while giving your body the signal that you need more…. Just remember: no squeam allowed!


So sit down with a glass of milk and a bowl of cherries while you listen to this Horrific History Podcast episode through one of your favorite podcast services (iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn and more) and come back again in two weeks to learn about human organ and tissue theft!


Some of our favorite resources from this week’s episode (you can find more in our Store!):


Horrific History Podcast

Commercial break music by Dead but Dreaming.

Slideshow photo credit: Miras Turkey 2008 via photopin (license)

Blog Photo credit: By Herbert L. Fred, MD and Hendrik A. van Dijk [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons”

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5 Replies to “Too Much of a Good Thing: Everyday Toxins”

  1. […] Can you identify all the plants in your yard or garden pots? After hearing this episode, you may never look at them (or honey products) the same way again! Eric Slyter and Curtis Bender, your Horrific History co-hosts, explore some pretty (and highly toxic)  plants from across the globe. From nightshade to wolfsbane, and rhododendron to barbasco, this episode will have you questioning the biological warfare applications of your garden plants… just remember to watch how much you use! […]

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