The Ration

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A News21 food and health reporting project by UC Berkeley School of Journalism

Rebecca Wolfson, reporter/producer

Picture of Rebecca Wolfson

Wolfson is a multimedia producer and reporter with a special passion for audio storytelling. She just completed a master's degree in radio journalism at the University of Missouri. At Missouri, Wolfson produced two public radio shows for KBIA, mid-Missouri's NPR affiliate: a science show with a segment about animals and an international affairs show. She's originally from Milwaukee, and has worked as a production assistant and freelance writer in Wisconsin, New York City and Tel Aviv, Israel. She's particularly interested in science and health.

Stories by Rebecca Wolfson

An infographic that takes you to the sounds of a food desert

INFOGRAPHIC: Soundscape of a Fresno food desert

Click a point on the map to hear an audio portrait and learn more about the neighborhood.

Fresno sits in the middle of the Central Valley, one of the highest-producing agricultural regions in the country, where historical farmhouses, upscale subdivisions, fruit orchards and strip malls coexist within city limits. Yet many people here lack access to healthy food. This interactive graphic takes you through the valley were you can experience first hand the sounds of a food desert. Continue reading

The Science of Food Addiction

Can a doughnut act like a drug?

Jan, the vice president of a public relations firm, tried everything she could think of to lose weight. The 58-year-old, who declined to share her full name, tried the traditional route with various diets, including Weight Watchers. She also tried more extreme techniques, such as demanding that her husband threaten her with divorce if she did not lose weight. None of it worked. Continue reading

An Illustration by Lily Mihalik showing a man dancing with a peanut

Allergy Minstral: Inside the Allergic-Kid Economy

As a kid, Kyle Dine was introduced to a long menu of foods he wasn’t allowed to eat: tree nuts, peanuts, eggs, turmeric, mustard, shellfish, salmon. But Dine was determined not to let his food allergies get in his way. That didn’t always turn out so well: He took risks and didn’t read labels. When he was 21, a relative handed him a dessert square and told him it was egg-free. Within two minutes, Dine felt his throat closing up—the dessert contained cashews. He alerted his mother, who injected him with his EpiPen and called 911. He spent the night swollen in the hospital, hooked up to an IV that pumped his body full of antihistamines. Continue reading

Organic and Gluten-Free Passover Foods On the Rise

A new spin on an ancient tradition

They tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat. If the majority of Jewish holidays had a single tag line, that’s what it would be, and Passover is no different.

On Passover Jewish people around the world re-tell the story of the Israelites’ exodus from Egypt. When the Jews fled from Pharaoh in order to escape slavery, they didn’t have time to wait for their bread to rise so they ate unleavened bread. Continue reading