31 May: The Controversial Birth of Corn Flakes

Rerun. John Harvey Kellogg believed his corn flakes had a future as a sexual suppressant when he filed a patent for “Flaked Cereals and Process of Preparing Same” on 31st May, 1895.

What the Seventh Day Adventist and eugenicist hadn’t counted on was his brother Will – who combined his discovery with sugar; effectively creating the Kellogg company that still exists to this day. 

In this episode, Olly, Rebecca and Arion reveal the origins of the word ‘Sanitarium’, explain what Dr. Kellogg got up to on honeymoon; and revisit his alarming prescription for yoghurt…

Content Warning: references to eugenics, masturbation, sexual content

Further Reading:

• ‘John Harvey Kellogg, MD: Health Reformer and Antismoking Crusader’ at the U.S. National Library of Medicine: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1447485/

• NPR’s Fresh Air on ‘How The ‘Battling’ Kellogg Brothers Revolutionized American Breakfast’ (2017): https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/08/08/542145177/how-the-battling-kellogg-brothers-revolutionized-american-breakfast?t=1621942499296

• Discovery’s ‘How It’s Made’ visits a cereal factory:

‘Why am I hearing a rerun?’

Each Thursday and Friday we repeat stories from our archive of 800+ episodes, so we can maintain the quality of our independent podcast and bring you fresh, free content every Monday-Wednesday… 

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The Retrospectors are Olly Mann, Rebecca Messina & Arion McNicoll, with Matt Hill.

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