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Food Chemistry

Why Can Beetroot Turn Urine Red? – The Chemistry of Beetroot

The latest of the food science graphics looks at the chemistry of beetroot. An unusual effect of beetroot is that it can cause ‘beeturia’, or a red colouration to the urine, after ingestion. This is a condition that only affects an estimated 10-14% of the population, so what are the chemical compounds behind it, and […]

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Food Chemistry

Why does Grapefruit Interact with Drugs? – The Chemistry of a Grapefruit

You may have heard of ‘the grapefruit juice effect’ – a range of medications recommend avoiding grapefruits or grapefruit juice whilst you are taking them, due the unfavourable interactions with the medication and the unwanted side effects this can cause. So, what chemical compounds cause these interactions?

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Colourful Chemistry Inorganic Chemistry

Colours of Transition Metal Ions in Aqueous Solution

This graphic looks at the colours of transition metal ions when they are in aqueous solution (in water), and also looks at the reason why we see coloured compounds and complexes for transition metals. This helps explain, for example, why rust (iron oxide) is an orange colour, and why the Statue of Liberty, made of […]

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Food Chemistry

Sourness & Scurvy – The Chemistry of a Lemon

With it being Pancake Day tomorrow, it seemed like a good time to look at the chemistry of the humble lemon, and the compounds that give it its sour taste. Of course, citric acid is already well known – it even has its own E number (E330). However, a couple of other acid compounds are […]

Categories
Biochemistry

Chemical Structures of Neurotransmitters

A bit of a chemistry/biology tie in today with a series of posters looking at the chemical structures of some of the main neurotransmitters in the brain. I’ve also included a little information on the main effects and roles of each underneath the structures – however, I’d hasten to add that, since this is definitely […]

Categories
Food Chemistry

Why Can Coriander Taste Soapy? – The Chemistry of Coriander

I wasn’t aware of this until recently, being a fan of coriander myself, but apparently there are quite a few people for whom coriander (referred to as cilantro in the US)┬áhas a rather unpleasant soapy, or even metallic, taste. The cause of this has its roots in the chemical composition of coriander leaves – though, […]