Health Advice





Mike Stocker/Sun Sentinel/TNS

Don't take a rapid COVID test too soon: how and when to swab

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — With new COVID cases in Florida on the rise, taking an easy-to-get rapid test can give you quick results.

But the timing has become tricky.

If you have COVID-19 symptoms, such as fever, cough, congestion or a sore throat, test yourself immediately but know that a negative result may mean that you swabbed too early.

�...Read more

Spencer Platt/Getty Images North America/TNS

Few eligible families have applied for government help to pay for COVID funerals

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

On a humid August afternoon in 2020, two caskets ― one silver, one white ― sat by holes in the ground at a small, graveside service in the town of Travelers Rest, South Carolina.

The family had just lost a mom and dad, both to COVID-19.

“They died five days apart,” said Allison Leaver, their daughter who now lives in Maryland with her ...Read more

Ray Chavez/Bay Area News Group/TNS

Q&A: A parents' guide to COVID booster shots for kids 5-11

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- With COVID-19 cases rising again in the Bay Area, parents have a new consideration for protecting their children this week: The Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization Tuesday for kids ages 5-11 to get a booster shot of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine.

So should they? Tuesday’s announcement didn’t ...Read more

The power of a glass of water

"Once I drink the water, I feel it immediately," says Cameron Diaz. "I go from being a wilted plant to one that has been rejuvenated by the rain." Cindy Crawford agrees: "Your body is so happy when you drink water." Well, your cardiologist is happy, too!

Researchers from the Laboratory of Vascular and Matrix Genetics at the National Heart Lung...Read more

Diarrhea, bloating and gas are hallmarks of lactose intolerant

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

Dear Dr. Roach: I'm a 78-year-old retired medical oncologist. While in residency in New York, I got a gastrointestinal virus that left me with lactose intolerance. After a while, it improved somewhat. But in the past couple of years, using Lactaid tabs when I ate yogurt started not to be enough, and I was plagued by liquid stools once a day to ...Read more

Environmental Nutrition: Do you need a gender-specific supplement?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Studies show that most Americans don’t get enough of several important nutrients from their diets. A multivitamin/mineral supplement can help fill in those nutrient gaps. But does it make scientific sense to choose a supplement specifically tailored to men or women? There is some rationale behind creating gender-specific supplements, but the ...Read more

4 sweet health benefits of eating cantaloupe

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Longer days and warmer weather are a happy indication that cantaloupe season is just around the corner. And while you can usually find this delicious melon variety in grocery stores year-round, it’ll be most delicious when in season, which can start as early as April or as late as August, depending on where you live.

Cantaloupe may not be the...Read more

Tooth loss truth: It’s no longer about the tooth fairy

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

When you hear the phrase tooth loss, what comes to mind first? Trauma? Tooth decay? The tooth fairy? While all of these are acceptable associations, there are many more factors involved in tooth loss. From a population perspective, older Americans are keeping their teeth longer, according to a 2016 study. In fact, complete tooth loss has ...Read more

Mayo Clinic Q&A: Do I need congenital heart disease revision surgery?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I have a congenital heart defect and my initial surgery at 32 was complicated. I continue to have heart problems. At my last visit, my cardiologist said I would likely need another surgery. I’m afraid to have another procedure. How do I know if I need one, and why would a revision be needed?

ANSWER: Patients with moderate to...Read more

Gulp: Alcohol May Not Be Good for Your Heart

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

The so-called French paradox suggests that light consumption of alcohol (typically in the form of wine) may actually promote cardiovascular health -- or at least reduce the risk of heart disease.

But a new study posits that genetic predisposition may be more strongly associated: People inclined to drink more are also more likely to develop ...Read more

Suzanne Tucker/Dreamstime/TNS

Mayo Clinic Q and A: Ear infections after swimming

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I swim for exercise and relaxation. I try to get in the pool about three times a week. Recently, I have begun to have episodes where it feels like water is still in my ear. Then my ear becomes red and painful. A friend suggested I might have swimmer's ear. Is this something that is easy to treat? Do I need to stop swimming?

...Read more

Is the COVID-19 Test-to-Treat program testing your patience?

The news is good, bad and downright stupid when it comes to the COVID-19 Test-to-Treat Program that was launched in March.

Good: antiviral medications. Pfizer's Paxlovid and Merck's Lagevrio, when taken within five days of developing your first COVID-19 symptoms, can prevent severe illness, hospitalizations and deaths, especially among ...Read more

Should you switch your vaccine brand for a second booster?

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

Dear Dr. Roach: My wife and I are both in our late 60s. She has gotten three doses of the Pfizer vaccine, and I have gotten three doses of the Moderna, only because that was what was available when we got our first dose. Because of our age, we are considering getting a second booster dose. I know the recommendation is that either vaccine would ...Read more

Feng Yu/Dreamstime/TNS

Consumer Health: Osteoporosis and exercise

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

May is National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month, which makes this a good time to learn more about this bone disease. Osteoporosis affects approximately 10 million people in the U.S., 80% of whom are women, according to the Office on Women's Health.

Osteoporosis causes bones to become weak and brittle — so brittle that a fall or ...Read more

David Ryder/Getty Images North America/TNS

Clashing abortion laws in northwest US show chaos of post-Roe care

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

The stark divides and murky legalities of how U.S. states handle abortion rights may be most intense at the northwest corner of the country.

Less than two months before a leaked Supreme Court document signaled the imminent demise of Roe v. Wade, the governors of Washington and Idaho signed diametrically opposite abortion bills. Washington ...Read more

Exercise your right to smile

"You're only one workout away from a good mood." That may sound like a T-shirt slogan, but a new study confirms what we have long suspected: Regular physical activity is a great way to reduce the risk of depression and to improve your mood if you are feeling down. A study in JAMA Psychiatry looked at 15 studies with more than 190,000 ...Read more

Choosing the best blood pressure drug depends on the patient

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

Dear Dr. Roach: I'm trying to find the best high blood pressure drug with the least side effects for a Hispanic male, 77 years old, with swollen ankles at the end of the day and readings of 160/76 with a pulse of 64.

Of all the drugs in the market for treating high blood pressure, which one is the best with the least side effects? Some ...Read more

Diabetes Quick Fix: Oven-Fried Chicken with Creamed Corn and Lima Beans

Health Advice / Health Advice /

Fried chicken outstrips all other fast-food sales combined. I decided to bake this chicken in the oven and give it a crunchy crust without frying it. Placing the baking tray in the oven to preheat will cook the bottom side of the chicken without having to turn it.

Helpful Hints:

— You can substitute breadcrumbs for cracker crumbs.

— You ...Read more


Mayo Clinic Minute: How lifestyle changes may help manage menopause symptoms

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

The average healthy woman begins menopause at 51, though some women will begin in their 40s or in their late 50s. It's a natural biological process that marks the time a woman ends her menstrual cycle.

During National Women's Health Week, health care professionals at Mayo Clinic want to remind all women that mood swings, hot flashes and ...Read more

Ask the Pediatrician: How can parents help teens on autism spectrum transition to adulthood?

Health Advice / Health & Fitness /

Q: My teenage son has autism and I want to help him navigate the transition to being an adult, including adult health care. How can I do this?

A: We all go through transitions in life. Some of these transitions just happen without any fanfare, like when your infant became an active toddler. Others go more smoothly when we prepare and plan.

If ...Read more