TV Shows & Podcasts

What You'll Learn in Season 2 of Proof

Our Webby-award winning podcast is back! See what season two has in store.

Published May 24, 2019.

America’s Test Kitchen’s Proof digs into the weird, surprising, and funny backstories around food and drink—the tales we haven't heard yet, the ones that have been lost, the under-told. In its first season, Proof investigated the fascinating worlds of food cravings, celery, Jelly Belly jelly beans, and much more.

With season two, host Bridget Lancaster is back with a fascinating cast of reporters and experts, bringing more of the stories that go above and beyond. They’re questioning probiotics and rethinking ugly food. They’ll look at how Chinese restaurants became ingrained in American culture and why a Korean beverage may be the next kombucha. They travel to the paradise of the Mexican wine industry and uncover what’s possibly the best sugar substitute—and learn why it’s not on every supermarket shelf. Oh, and they go fishing for snakeheads.

Below, we’ve previewed a few things you’ll learn in the first four episodes of the new season, which premieres on May 23rd and releases new episodes every Thursday. Subscribe today so you don’t miss a single episode.

Do you have a crazy food questions you’d like us to investigate? Send us your questions—the weird, the obscure, the seemingly unanswerable—and we might feature it in a bonus episode this summer! No question is too ridiculous.


Episode 1: The Cover-Up of a "Miracle" Sugar Alternative

In the first episode of season two, host Bridget Lancaster and Producer Sara Joyner take you on a journey to learn more about the miracle berry, a fruit native to West Africa whose rise in the United States was possibly squandered by special interests. When activated by an acid, these berries turn whatever you’re eating sweet, but without the negative effects of processed sugar. Despite their short shelf life and difficult growing conditions, one scientist, Dr. Robert Harvey, tried to take these berries mainstream. Things were going well at first—until he ran into some roadblocks that eventually cut his mission short. Was it corruption? Bad luck? Listen to find out. [LISTEN NOW]

Episode 2: A Healthy Gut = A Healthy Life

Bacteria isn’t all bad. In the second episode of season two, a collaboration with Harvard University’s Veritalk podcast, Bridget interviews experts on gut health, the gut microbiome, and the bacteria that make it up. The bacteria living in your digestive system do a lot in the breaking down of food to be digested, and are a key component in making sure your body gets the nutrients from these foods. There are over 100 trillion individual bacterium in your body and they all have special jobs. Tune in for the latest on how scientists are starting to figure out what roles these different bacteria play in your gut health, how to keep it healthy, and what yours may be missing. [LISTEN NOW]

Episode 3: Frankenfish

The snakehead fish is taking over the Potomac River in the Mid-Atlantic, and the citizens of the area are trying to figure out how to control them. An invasive species, these fish secrete slime to help them survive, and can even live outside of the water for a while thanks to this trait. The local media demonized these fish because of their scary looks and the damage they can cause, dubbing them crazy names like “Frankenfish” and “Fishzilla.” Even Steven Colbert chimed in. So how did these fish native to Asia even get to the Potomac? And the even bigger question: why are people eating them? Learn the answers when Bridget sits down with Rob Sachs, a radio producer from Washington, DC. [LISTEN NOW]

Episode 4: The OGs of America's Oranges

Ever heard of Eliza Tibbets? The people of Riverside, California have. There, she’s considered the “queen” of oranges. She helped bring the modern navel oranges we know today to Riverside, which is in—where else?—Orange County. These oranges were also one of the first things that turned California into a tourist destination. In this episode, you’ll learn about the journey of the navel orange and the California citrus industry. This journey included a few trees, and a cross-country train ride. You’ll also learn how the orange went from a delicacy to the ubiquitous fruit it is today. It all came down to great marketing and even Queen Victoria played a role (sort of). [LISTEN NOW]

Make sure you subscribe to Proof to hear these stories, and more! 

What episode are you most excited for? What do you want to hear about next? Let us know in the comments!

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