November 2008

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Q. What health concerns may be related to eating a lot of black licorice, especially for children?A. Natural black licorice contains glycyrrhizin. Regular consumption of this compound can have serious health consequences, including fluid retention, high blood pressure, low potassium... (Read More)
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Q. I was recently traveling in France and ran out of the acetaminophen I brought from home for my painful arthritic knee. When I attempted to buy more acetaminophen from a French pharmacy, the pharmacist said acetaminophen is not sold... (Read More)
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Q. Why can't canned beets be used to reduce cholesterol? I had a significant reduction after only two weeks on the fresh beets but they are expensive and time consuming to prepare.A. Until we received your question we had no... (Read More)
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Q. I struggled for years with hair loss, dry skin and tiredness all the time. I was finally sent to an endocrinologist who discovered I have Hashimoto's disease and prescribed Armour Thyroid.Now that I take this natural hormone, my hair... (Read More)
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Q. In India we offer fennel seeds after meals. This helps avoid flatulence. Fennel is also good against sore throat and sinus problems.I use the following recipe for my sinus trouble: Combine 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, ¼ teaspoon powdered ginger,... (Read More)
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Q. I read your column about floating poop. When I experienced this about seven years ago I ignored it because there were no other symptoms. Luckily for me, I ended up in the emergency room with a kidney stone. This... (Read More)

703 Health News Update

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A large trial of Crestor was stopped early because it reduced inflammation and the risk of a heart attack. How should we interpret the JUPITER trial, and what does it mean for you? Explore the stories behind the health headlines.... (Read More)
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Ten years ago we received an amazing letter from Donald Agar in Pittsfield, Massachusetts: “I have had Crohn's disease for 40 years, and during that time I have had a never-ending battle with diarrhea. Lomotil helps some, but it doesn't... (Read More)
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Q. My life is so much better since I read your column about rinsing my hair with vinegar. I am 56 years old and for the previous 30 years my scalp has itched intensely whenever I sweat. No anti-itching shampoo... (Read More)
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Extended Interview with Nortin Hadler, MD, Professor of Medicine, Microbiology and Immunology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is attending rheumatologist at UNC Hospitals. His books include The Last Well Person: How to Stay Well Despite... (Read More)
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Extended Interview with Paul Ridker, MD, Professor of Medicine at the Harvard Medical School and Director of the Center for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention at the Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA. He led the JUPITER trial of Crestor against... (Read More)
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Extended Interview with Stephen Sinatra, MD, FACC, cardiologist at the New England Heart Center in Manchester, CT. He edits the monthly newsletter, “Heart, Health and Nutrition” and is author of several books, including The Sinatra Solution. His Web site is... (Read More)

703 Health News Update

703_health_news_update.mp3 ">
Beyond the Podcast: listen to an additional interview with our guest:
extended_interview_with_stephen_sinatra.mp3 ">
Beyond the Podcast: listen to an additional interview with our guest:
extended_interview_with_nortin_hadler.mp3 ">
Beyond the Podcast: listen to an additional interview with our guest:
extended_interview_with_paul_ridker.mp3 ">
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A large trial of Crestor was stopped early because it reduced inflammation and the risk of a heart attack. How should we interpret the JUPITER trial, and what does it mean for you? Explore the stories behind the health headlines.Guests:... (Read More)
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Q. A few weeks ago I heard Listerine mentioned for jock itch. I didn’t have jock itch, but I was suffering from a very persistent case of athlete's foot. I had used several over-the-counter medications for weeks with no results.... (Read More)
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Q. Someone wrote to you about using zinc oxide as a deodorant. I tried it but it didn't work for me.At the same time my hemorrhoids were burning and itching, and even Preparation H didn't seem to help. Since zinc... (Read More)
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Q. I have a 17-year-old son that I have suspected for years has a mild form of ADD. He tells me he seems to be bombarded with information like hundreds of highways leading to his brain at one time.He's willing... (Read More)
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Twelve years ago, we spoke with actor Evan Handler about his fascinating book Time on Fire: My Comedy of Terrors. It described his battle with acute myeloid leukemia in his early 20s. Since that time, Evan Handler has won acclaim... (Read More)
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We are often asked about long-term side effects of medications people will be taking for a long time. Drugs to treat osteoporosis are usually taken for years, if not decades.FDA usually does not require long-term tests to determine safety. As... (Read More)
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Q. I have an elderly dog suffering from painful arthritis in knee and hip. Can I use the gin soaked golden raisins with her safely? How many?She's been X-rayed so I know it's arthritis. She hobbles around painfully. I'm already... (Read More)
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Q. Every winter my skin gets awfully dry and itchy. My hands and particularly my fingertips really suffer. At times they crack and bleed. I heard that you have written about solutions for these problems. I would be so grateful... (Read More)
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Q. I am having trouble leveling out my Coumadin. Many foods are not included on the list the dietitian gave me. Cranberries are a puzzle, for instance. The nurse says eat them; the doctor says don’t. Can I eat cranberries... (Read More)
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Twelve years ago, we spoke with actor Evan Handler about his fascinating book Time on Fire: My Comedy of Terrors. It described his battle with acute myeloid leukemia in his early 20s. Since that time, Evan Handler has won acclaim... (Read More)
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Aleve Makes Her Drowsy

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Q. Can Aleve sometimes cause drowsiness? I only take one but later I find myself dozing off. Is there a hidden ingredient that causes this? Am I the only one who experiences this problem?A. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as... (Read More)
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Q. Does Pycnogenol contain estrogen? I would like to try it for my hot flashes but my doctor said I shouldn't take it if it contained estrogen.A. There is no estrogen in Pycnogenol. This extract of French maritime pine bark... (Read More)

Annoyed at ED Ads

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Q. I'm so irked about erectile dysfunction ads. I'm a mature adult, married (with adult children), so I’m not ignorant or prudish.I think, however, that if you have a problem, you know it and should see your doctor. These advertisements... (Read More)
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Q. About six years ago I had trouble with statin cholesterol-lowering drugs. My muscles and joints got very sore. Then a friend suggested red yeast rice. The results were amazing.At that time my doctor required a lab test for cholesterol... (Read More)
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Does FDA approval guarantee safety? If the Supreme Court rules as expected, patients will have no legal recourse if they are harmed by an FDA-approved medicine.The case that will soon be decided by the Supreme Court involves a musician who... (Read More)
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Q. I would like to know if there are any herbs used for penis enlargement. I am interested in natural approaches to growing body hair and improving potency.A. Despite extravagant claims that pills can increase penis size, the FDA has... (Read More)
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Q I have read that cold medicines for children continue to be sold even though they have not been thoroughly tested. Sadly, some businesses are quick to put out OTC medications just to turn a profit (and a rather large... (Read More)

701 Stroke of Insight

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Stroke is the third leading cause of death in America, killing 150,000 people a year. The survivors can face a difficult challenge, as they may need to relearn simple activities such as talking, reading or dressing themselves.For one neuroscientist, experiencing... (Read More)
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