December 2010

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This Week's Radio Show: 796 Retraining the Brain
Grapefruit Interacts With Tegretol and Lipitor
Can You Catch Cystitis From Whirlpool Bath?
Tart Cherries for Restless Legs
Placebo Power Probed
Surgeons to Disclose Sleep Deprivation
Old Antibiotic Still Best for Sinusitis
Babies Do Better with Adequate Vitamin D
Soy Supplements May Be Safe (Read More)
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Q. With grapefruit in season, I am worried that my son's anticonvulsant medicine may interact since he loves it. Paradoxically, too much Tegretol caused him to have seizures last summer. Once the dose was lowered from 800 mg to 600... (Read More)
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Q. My mother-in-law has a Jacuzzi bathtub that she really enjoys and uses several times per week. She has had several urinary tract infections. Could the Jacuzzi be the cause of these infections? I am also concerned that if there... (Read More)

Placebo Power Probed

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The power of placebos is more mysterious than most scientists ever imagined. Sugar pills are perceived as worthless since they have no active ingredients. Researchers use them for comparison when they are testing new drugs. In a double-blind study, neither... (Read More)
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Surgeons may someday be required to let patients know they are sleep-deprived before an operation. An editorial in The New England Journal of Medicine proposes that it is unethical for doctors to operate without adequate rest unless the patient has... (Read More)
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A sinus infection can make people feel awful. Besides the congestion, inflammation and pain there is a kind of spaciness that accompanies sinusitis. It makes it hard to think or do anything that requires concentration. That's why people with sinusitis... (Read More)
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Low levels of vitamin D have been linked to a higher risk of infections in adults. A new study from New Zealand shows there is also a connection for newborn babies. In the study, umbilical cord blood from more than... (Read More)
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There is an ongoing controversy about the safety of long-term soy supplementation for menopausal women. Isoflavones found in soy have some estrogenic activity and are often taken to relieve symptoms such as hot flashes. A two-year study of 400 women... (Read More)
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Q. I want to let you know about something that stunned me. I have suffered from restless leg syndrome (RLS) for nearly 35 years. A friend casually mentioned that pie cherries had helped her leg pain and thought maybe they... (Read More)
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Q. The skin around my nails becomes dry and rough, and within a few days the skin cracks open. I've found that using a nail file to smooth away the rough skin helps to avoid the cracking. If the cracks... (Read More)
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Listen To Our Podcast: 760 Natural Cholesterol Control (Archive)
Solution for Cracked Fingertips
Chocolate Boosts Aspirin Power
Bitters Overcome Heartburn
Comparing Sleeping Pills
Home Remedies for Eczema
Forging Prescription Is Risky
Do Drugs Drive People to Violence? (Read More)
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Q. I take aspirin for arthritis pain. It's the only painkiller that works for me, but sometimes if I have a headache, the aspirin doesn't seem to work. A fellow worker suggested that I eat a chocolate candy bar when... (Read More)
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Q. I frequently have heartburn when I eat spicy foods. Recently a bartender offered a concoction of club soda and bitters. He mixed 6 drops of bitters with a shot glass of soda. It worked instantly to relieve my heartburn.... (Read More)

Comparing Sleeping Pills

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Q. Please send me any information you have on sleep. I suffer with insomnia, as do my friends. We have all tried zolpidem. It sometimes helps me drift off to sleep but it doesn't last more than a few hours.... (Read More)
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Q. Do you know of any home remedies for help in relieving symptoms of eczema? When humidity is low, my skin condition is aggravated something awful. It gets dry, itchy, red and ugly where it cracks and peels. A. This... (Read More)
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Q. Recently I did something I think might be very harmful to me. One of my doctors gave me a prescription, but accidentally left a blank slip attached below it. One of my other doctors had stopped giving me a... (Read More)
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Violence is as American as apple pie. Just think of the shoot-out at the OK Corral. Vicious video games, action movies and ultimate fighting are all extremely popular. What happens when violence is a side effect of a medication? Most... (Read More)
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Millions of people rely on statin-type drugs to control their cholesterol and lower their risk of heart disease. Medicines like Crestor, Lipitor and simvastatin are effective, but they have some drawbacks. Diet and supplements can make a difference, but what... (Read More)
Buy This Show on CD or MP3
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This Week's Radio Show: 760 Natural Cholesterol Control (Archive)
De-Gas Beans with Soft Drink
Overcoming the Stigma of Bed Wetting
Doubts about Echinacea for Colds
Beet Juice for the Brain
Acid-Suppressing Drugs Raise Risk of Pneumonia
Preventing Falls
Music Helps Patients on Ventilators (Read More)
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Q. Many years ago I started using a rather unusual method for de-gassing beans. When it is time to soak the beans overnight I use Sprite or its generic equivalent instead of water. I then rinse the beans with water... (Read More)
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Echinacea is barely effective against the common cold. This herbal remedy enjoyed a peak of popularity in the past decade when it was touted as a way to treat colds. But in a well-designed new trial, more than 700 people... (Read More)

Beet Juice for the Brain

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Beet juice has been shown to lower blood pressure. Scientists believe that the high nitrate content of beets leads to creation of nitric oxide in the body. This compound helps relax blood vessels and improves circulation. A new study from... (Read More)
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Acid-suppressing drugs are among the most popular pills in the pharmacy. They are prescribed under brand names such as Aciphex, Nexium and Protonix. Over the counter heartburn medicines such as Prevacid and Prilosec are also widely used. These drugs and... (Read More)
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Q. My daughter still wets the bed at age six. She has been seen by a urologist who didn't find anything wrong. Needless to say, she is extremely embarrassed about this situation. She can't sleep over at a friend's house... (Read More)

Preventing Falls

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When older people fall, the consequences can be tragic. A broken hip can limit mobility or even lead to premature death. That's why preventing falls is so important. The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force reviewed 54 studies on the best... (Read More)
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Being hooked up to a ventilator for breathing is a stress-provoking experience. The patient can't talk or even take a breath on her own, and she is isolated from her friends and in serious medical trouble. If doctors attempt to... (Read More)
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Being hooked up to a ventilator for breathing is a stress-provoking experience. The patient can't talk or even take a breath on her own, and she is isolated from her friends and in some kind of serious medical trouble. If... (Read More)
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Listen To Our Podcast: 795 Relaxation Response
Hot Water Cures Stubborn Warts
Search for Fish Oil Suppositories
Treating Children's Cough Safely
Multiple Medicines Causing Trouble for Mother
Epsom Salts Offer Unique Remedy for Rosacea
Safety Issues May Be Slow to Surface
Saving Money on Heartburn Medicine (Read More)
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Q. I saw a question about warts on the toes of a 7 year old. My daughter had the same problem 20 years ago when she was that age. We tried everything and none of it worked. The doctor was... (Read More)
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Q. Fish oil makes me vomit. I am aware of the benefits of omega 3 fatty acids, but I am at a total loss for a source that my body tolerates. I have tried many oral forms and all have... (Read More)