Friday, June 29, 2012

What Do Scotch, Insulin & Band-Aids Have In Common?

I sort of smelled Band-Aids at the "Insulin, The Discovery,"
 Exhibit's section with the 40 year supply of empties from a PWD.  
Maybe it was pavlovian???
Or maybe someone was sneaking the hooch! 

Photo courtesy of
"I love scotch, scotchy, scotch, scotch." No, actually and unlike Ron Burgundy, I don't like scotch - I can't stand the stuff! 
But ironically, scotch and the elixir of life known as insulin (we're talking synthetic insulin folks, not the kind that working pancreases make, the kind people with busted pancreases inject) which I do love and appreciate, have one very distictive thing in common - The smell. They both smell like band- Aids.
So Diabetesalicious readers, did you ever wonder why insulin and scotch smells like bandaids? 
SIDEBAR: Personally I think insulin smells like Band-Aids and fear, but I digress. 
Any how, thanks to the folks @PopSci, now we know. It's all about Creosol and it's and it's odiferous cousin creosote ( it's a toxic wood perservative) and is used in.... Wait for it....wait for it....synthetic Insulin and Band-Aids.
They are also found in Peat,(a.k.a., partially decayed plant products - Ewww) in something called Phenols which is pretty important when it comes to making scotch. Apparently scotch is basically barley water fermented and smoked via dried in peat fires which release phenols in the barley water and is essentially and for all intensive purposes, Scotch is Peat Juice. So stick that in your peat pipe and smoke it! 
And now for the Band-Aid portion of our show. Band-Aids contain something called meta-cresol, which is similar to the creosol found in insulin and meta-cresol is all types of antiseptic & medicinal qualities and is used in said Band-Aids. 
You can read more about scotch, peat, phenols and creosols and all the magic that makes scotch,synthetic insulin, Band-Aids, Sharpies, disinfectants and crude oil all part of the same odiferous family tree by clicking, HERE.  

PS: Big thanks to my friend Kim for forwarding me the article via the facebook! 


StephenS said...

I saw this in my reader and I had to laugh. Then I read the analysis @popsci and I laughed again.

I think if my scotch smelled/tasted like band-aids, I might find a different brand. On the other hand, I have to admit to being a fan of a good, earthy single malt (in moderation always). How do they think this stuff up?

Diane J Standiford said...

I never saw THAT coming!

Scott S said...

There are different preservatives used in different brands of insulin, hence the smell is more powerful with certain brands of insulin than others. Still, I appreciate your sharing the Popular Science article!

Shannon said...

Ha! I just wrote about this same thing last week - about insulin smelling like Band-Aids :) Great minds think alike!