Monthly Archives: November 2013

Predominantly plant diets help patients shed pounds

Eating vegan or vegetarian helps obese patients lose more weight than dietary patterns that allow limited amounts of meat, researchers reported in a recent study.

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Uninflated Balloons Are Dangerous for Young Children

In what will, I suspect, be a surprise to many parents, it’s been reported that uninflated balloons are the leading cause of child suffocation.

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The Best Diet

If you’re trying to lose weight, the list of diets to choose from can lead you searching for comfort food. How do you know which one is really the best? It turns out, the answer is up to you.

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Give Thanks

One recent Thanksgiving my wife and I sat around the table with a small group of family and friends. One of them asked if we could practice a tradition her family had done for years.

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Holiday Eating Without the Guilt – or the Pounds

If you love those holiday smorgasbords, but are already stressing about the added pounds you’ll have to sweat off come the beginning of next year, I’ve got some great tips for you to consider.

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Dangers of refusing vitamin K shots at birth

The AP reported that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reporting that “four Nashville-area infants suffered brain or stomach bleeding earlier this year,” and that all four “were treated with vitamin K and survived.” In each case, the parents … Continue reading

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Healthier Traditions

Maybe you feel like the listener who wrote, “I want to eat healthier over the holidays, but feel like taking away the traditional food takes away the fun.”

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Mechanic’s idea to ease difficult deliveries wins support

In a front-page story, the New York Times reports on Jorge Odón, “an Argentine car mechanic,” who developed an idea for extracting “a baby stuck in the birth canal” based on having seen a YouTube video on retrieving “a lost cork from … Continue reading

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Ringing in Kids’ Ears

Do you ever feel like some of the things you say to your teen fall on deaf ears? That may actually be true … Well, sort of.

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Obesity increases heart attack risk by itself

According to Bloomberg News, “Obesity raises the chance of heart attack regardless of whether a person has the cluster of cardiovascular risk factors known as metabolic syndrome, according to a study that challenges previous beliefs.”

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Little evidence vitamins prevent heart disease, cancer

On its website, Time reports that the “U.S. Preventive Services Task Force [USPSTF] says that for most vitamins and minerals, there is not enough evidence to determine whether the pills can lower risk of heart disease or cancer.”

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Mom’s exercise in pregnancy increases her baby’s brain activity

The Los Angeles Times reports that, according to the results of a study presented at the Society for Neuroscience’s annual meeting, maternal exercise during pregnancy appears to result in more “mature brains” in infants.

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Mighty Mammogram

A listener asked me, “Do I really need to worry about a mammogram? I’m barely forty.”

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Some schools altering policies regarding mandatory absence for head lice

The Washington Post points out in its “Answer Sheet” blog that children with head lice are usually kept out of the classroom until the issue is resolved, but a number of schools across the nation are changing such policies. Many health and school … Continue reading

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Weightlifting Age

Thinking about retirement? How about using some of that extra time to pump some iron and get your heart pumping. Sound crazy? Well, it’s never too late to exercise.

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Study: Label changes for cough and cold medicine led to reduced ED visits for young children

Prior to 2007, thousands of children were seen in ERs around the country after taking over-the-counter (OTC) infant cough and cold medications (CCMs) that they should not have taken. Then, October 2007, manufacturers voluntarily withdrew OTC CCMs from the US market. Until … Continue reading

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SIDS

Few things make new parents more anxious than the possibility of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome—otherwise known as SIDS.

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Study finds most physicians fail to perform HPV test for women over 30

NPR reports in its “Shots” blog that although “HPV (human papilloma virus) testing is now recommended for women ages 30 to 65,” as the cause of most cervical cancers, “that message hasn’t gotten through to many doctors.”

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Mighty Mites

They’re in your carpet, clothing, pillows, your child’s stuffed animals—even in your bed. And they could be affecting your asthma or worsening your allergies.

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FDA to phase out trans fat

News that the FDA plans to eliminate artificial trans fats, which are found in many baked goods, and are said to be responsible for thousands of heart attacks and deaths, met with wide approval from nearly all health experts, including … Continue reading

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Facebook Blues

Can spending too much time with your friends be bad for your health? It may be—IF they’re all online.

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Report: Only 1% of kids’ fast-food meals are healthful

The Los Angeles Times reports that after analyzing “the menu offerings from 18 fast-food chains” geared toward children, including 5,427 possible meal combinations, researchers found that only one percent of those meals, just 33, “met the recommended nutrition guidelines set by the Institute of … Continue reading

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Anti-Vaccine Zealots Denounced in New Republic

Julia Ioffe (a Russian-American journalist and blogger, whose writings have been published by The Columbia Journalism Review, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, Foreign Policy, Forbes, The New Republic and Russia!) has come down with the 100-day cough, also known … Continue reading

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Worried about ‘low T’? You may want to worry more about treating it.

Treating low testosterone may be all the rage these days among men of a certain age. But men bothered by a midlife dip in energy and sex drive may want to think twice about bumping up their “low T” with … Continue reading

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Colorado Researchers Document Consequences of Failure to Vaccinate Children for Pertussis

Below is an article I wrote, along with my friend, Reg Finger, MD, MPH, on the impact that the anti-vaccine zealots are having here in Colorado. The article appeared in a publication of the Colorado Academy of Family Physicians, the CAFP … Continue reading

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Study says Mediterranean-style diet may improve health in later life

The Washington Post reports a Mediterranean-style diet could “improve health in later life,” citing a paper from the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Doctors and Faith

A listener asked me, “As patients, can we ask our doctors about their spiritual beliefs?”

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Study says children who get adequate sleep may eat less

The Huffington Post reports “getting adequate sleep may not just” help control attention and behavioral problems in children – “a small new study” published in the journal Pediatrics “suggests it could also affect the amount they eat.”

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Vitamin Labels

When shopping for vitamins, it can be hard to make the right choice. There are piles of products and a bevy of brands—and is there really a difference? The truth may be a hard pill to swallow.

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Most parents improperly administer inhaled asthma meds to their children

According to a report in HealthDay News, U.S. researchers asked 169 parents or caregivers in New York City to demonstrate the administration of asthma medications, and found that only one was able to show all 10 critical steps for properly … Continue reading

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