By: Joe Graedon June 22, 2015 5 Comments
    Cast Iron Skillet and Iron Teapot Can Boost Iron…

    Iron is an essential mineral. It is a component of the protein hemoglobin that carries oxygen to tissues throughout the body. That's why iron-deficiency anemia is a concern. This reader found a time-h…

    By: Joe Graedon June 11, 2015 4 Comments
    Tea Lover Loses Iron and Ends Up Anemic

    Q. I can't drink coffee because it upsets my stomach. I usually start the morning with two or three cups of hot tea (preferably English Breakfast or Earl Grey), and I drink iced tea with lunch and din…

    By: Joe Graedon January 8, 2015 309 Comments
    New Eliquis (Apixaban) Alert: Unexpected Side Ef…

    In our inbox yesterday morning was a media alert from Adverse Events, Inc., regarding the anticoagulant Eliquis (apixaban) and some new cases of colon cancer and liver injury. There is nothing in the …

    By: Joe Graedon December 25, 2014 12 Comments
    Her Sugar Cravings Annoy her Husband

    Q. For the past several months I have had severe sugar cravings. I sometimes go through a 5 pound bag of sugar in four days, just eating it by the spoonful. I have been tested for diabetes and don't h…

    By: Terry Graedon September 15, 2014 5 Comments
    Anemia Put Ice Addict in the Hospital

    Q. I am addicted to ice and eat big cups of it daily at both work and home. I compulsively fill the ice trays when they seem a little low. I am currently being hospitalized for low iron. I just receiv…

    By: Terry Graedon March 3, 2014 10 Comments
    Is Popcorn Addiction a Red Flag for Mineral Defi…

    Q. I saw an article about ice craving and related vitamin or mineral deficiencies. You said a popcorn addiction could also signal a deficiency in something, but you didn't say what. I eat popcorn ALL …

    By: Terry Graedon January 27, 2014 83 Comments
    Craving Ice Like an Addict Signals Serious Healt…

    Q. I used to crave ice just like a drug addict. The first thing in the morning I had to have it. I would get a large soft drink and ask for extra ice. I didn't care about the pop--it was the ice I wan…

    By: Terry Graedon December 30, 2013 12 Comments
    Omeprazole and Metformin Combined to Cause Vitam…

    Gastroenterologists have been very enthusiastic about proton pump inhibitors, PPIs. These acid-suppressing drugs work extremely well in treating ulcers and severe reflux disease. Physicians often pres…

    By: Terry Graedon December 12, 2013 7 Comments
    Drugs for GERD Can Deplete the Body of Crucial V…

    Some of the most common pills in the pharmacy might deplete the body of a crucial nutrient. Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are powerful acid suppressors and are prescribed for stomach ulcers and seve…

    By: Terry Graedon May 6, 2013 11 Comments
    Floating Poop Poses Diagnostic Puzzle

    Q. As far back as I can remember, my stool has floated. I never worried about it until I saw something on the web about pancreatic cancer and floating poop. I did some research and found that if you h…

    By: Terry Graedon February 25, 2013 6 Comments
    Compulsion to Eat Dirt Can Be Beaten

    Q. I am writing from Kenya where a lot of women eat clay. It is even packaged and sold at the supermarkets. Whether they are pregnant or not, many women go through these 200-gram packs of dirt at an a…

    By: Joe Graedon July 5, 2012 76 Comments
    Ice Addiction Leads to Hospitalization

    When a reader shares a story about a common problem, sometimes it saves someone else's life. That is what happened when readers wrote about their compulsion to chew on ice, like an ice addiction. Ice …

    By: Terry Graedon April 15, 2012 3 Comments
    Curing Anemia Overcame Cornstarch Craving

    Q. I was addicted to eating cornstarch for ten years. Then I was hospitalized for an unrelated problem and got a blood transfusion. My doctor also put me on iron and potassium supplements, and my corn…

    By: Terry Graedon April 14, 2010 19 Comments
    Leg Cramps Signaled Iron Deficiency

    Q. I was bothered with severe leg cramps for several months. I tried home remedies such as soap in my bed, tonic water and bananas, but they didn't help. At last I found out I was severely anemic with…

    By: Terry Graedon February 16, 2010 2 Comments
    New Rules for Powerful Anemia Drugs

    A few years ago drugs such as Procrit for chemotherapy-related anemia were advertised on television. Viewers were given the impression that this drug was safe and effective and would combat fatigue an…

    By: Joe Graedon August 25, 2008 32 Comments
    Ice Craving Signaled Cancer

    Q. In 2001 I had a very strong urge to chew on ice. After reading in your column that this could be a sign of anemia, I told my doctor about it. The blood work showed anemia and I was advised to get a…

    By: Joe Graedon July 18, 2008 137 Comments
    Cornstarch Cravings

    Q. I have been eating Argo cornstarch since I was 19. It started when I was in my first pregnancy and I've been eating it ever since. I used to eat a box a day and I think it is making me gain weight.…

    By: Terry Graedon June 12, 2006 0 Comments
    Radish Addict Is Growing Desperate

    Q. I am addicted to radishes. My mom doesn't want me to eat them but I can't go without having at least 10 a day. My mom stopped buying them so I would stop eating them. Before this, I just liked them…

    By: Joe Graedon January 20, 2003 0 Comments
    Orange Peel Addiction Could Signal Anemia

    Q. Have you ever heard of eating orange peel? After almost every meal I eat, especially after eating something sweet, I get a craving for orange peel. It seems to satisfy some unknown dietary need in …