Elemental
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Elemental

How Instagram Made Laxatives Cool

An age-old product gets a thoroughly modern, deeply weird, and potentially dangerous makeover

Illustration by Johanna Walderdorff

InIn Inner Hygiene, a medical history of constipation published in 2000, author James C. Whorton describes the 18th century advent of “patent medicines,” or herbal compounds that were unregulated, unproven, and peddled straight to the consumer. With…

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