Health Advice





When you talk to your plants, they talk back

The U.K.'s Royal Horticultural Society once conducted an experiment on how talking to plants affected their growth. Charles Darwin's great granddaughter -- one of 10 plant talkers who were recorded and then piped in one-to-a-tomato-plant -- saw her veggie grow 2 inches more than the plants who were listening to a male voice. The other female ...Read more

Squeezing optimal nutrition out of your veggie juice

When Jose Canseco's book "Juiced" hit the shelves in 2005, it rocked the baseball world with its tales of the illegal use of performance-enhancing drugs like steroids. Juicing is never good in sports, and it can be just as unhealthy for your diet. For example, drinking filtered kale juice instead of eating whole leaves robs you of glucose-

...Read more

Tracking down the cause of a throat tickle

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: I am 74 and in very good health. I'm active and walk twice daily.

Maybe a few times a day I get a tickle in my throat that causes me to cough a few times. If I suck on a hard candy or take a drink of water, it is soothed. It is never a deep cough or one that goes on and on. But it is annoying. I take amlodipine, levothyroxine, ...Read more

For Obsessive Behavior, an Electric Finding

Health Advice / Scott LaFee /

New research suggests low-frequency electrical stimulation of the brain may help people reduce obsessive behaviors, such as hoarding. It's estimated the neurological disorder affects nearly 1 billion people worldwide.

Scientists believe obsessive behaviors are the result of abnormal habit-learning. Something goes wrong in the brain where ...Read more

Sugar's secret hiding spots in everyday foods

When The Archies sang, "Oh, honey/Ah, sugar, sugar/You are my candy girl/And you got me wanting you," they could have been describing this country's sweet addiction. The average American eats more than 152 pounds of sugar annually!

Some of that is from sugar bombs like ice cream -- you're each eating 23 pounds a year! But a lot of what gets ...Read more

The best reason to take vitamin D is when level is low

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: These days, when vitamin D is recommended at every turn, I need to be sure I am taking the right dose. When I took 5,000 IU daily, my blood calcium levels increased and my doctor said to cut back to 2,000 IU daily. Now I read that we should be taking 5,000 IU daily because of COVID-19. Even my 23-year-old grandkids take this dose...Read more

Is this your year for reconditioning?

There's air conditioning, hair conditioning and, lately, err-conditioning. A new study in the journal Obesity found that in the past year, folks have become even more sedentary (in prepandemic years, 60% of Americans were inactive). Both intensity of and time spent doing exercise has decreased, and almost 28% of the study's participants fessed ...Read more

A calcium score can be a useful measure of heart attack risk

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: You mentioned checking a calcium score to help determine risk of having a heart attack. Please explain what that is. Thank you. -- J.S.

ANSWER: A coronary artery calcium score is a special kind of CT scan that looks for the presence of calcium in the arteries providing blood to heart muscle. Blockages in the arteries are usually...Read more

Filling in the gaps in post-stroke rehab

Aaron Ulland, 41, was "stroke patient one" in a daring new study that tested -- successfully -- the possibility of restoring the brain-muscle connection using tiny electrodes implanted in his brain to move a brace worn on his immobile arm. Although this was preliminary, the fact that the technology worked offers hope that, down the road, damaged...Read more

No universally accepted level for post-melanoma monitoring

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: My husband developed melanoma, and had 16 of his lymph nodes removed. He was considered a cancer survivor, as one of the nodes was cancerous. He went for skin check-ups twice a year and was given an OK. Yet he died two months ago from tumors on his liver, lungs and brain. He was stage 4 by the time we knew the cancer was back. Is...Read more

Nutrition News: Nutrition Fact or Fiction?

Health Advice / Nutrition News /

Ever wonder how many carbohydrates you should be eating? Or if a detox diet really works? Or how often to snack?

A Google search can give a variety of answers, but how do you know what the truth is? Make sure the site is reputable -- ending in ".org" or from a registered dietitian. Here are answers you can trust.

Do carbs make you gain weight?...Read more


Quinn on Nutrition: Good for your heart

Health Advice / Nutrition /

It’s only about the size of your fist. Yet every day your heart pumps the amount of blood that could fill a 2,000 gallon tank. Its job? To keep a constant supply of oxygen and nutrient-rich blood flowing through 60,000 miles of blood vessels to feed every cell and tissue in your body.

Unfortunately, we rarely give this amazing organ that is ...Read more

'Kaleidoscope vision' may be a migraine aura

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: Periodically, I suffer from kaleidoscope vision where my peripheral vision in the extreme right or left eye appears that I am looking through broken glass. It started about five years ago, when I was 65. After about 10-15 minutes it disappears. I never get headaches. It does not hinder my eyesight other than being very annoying. ...Read more

Waist not, want not

Around the world, people generate more than 2 billion metric tons of solid waste annually -- and high-income countries like the U.S. account for more than a third of that pollution. So it shouldn't come as a surprise that Americans are also experts at accumulating pollution around their waists. Since 1999, the average American guy's waist size ...Read more

Tales from the tailgate and other nutritional nightmares

Did you tailgate with (masked) friends to watch the Super Bowl outdoors? All kinds of innovative ways to share the day safely were tried this year and with viewer numbers hitting around 100 million, we're betting more than 100 million bags of chips, corndogs, doughnuts and beers were consumed.

Seems even if your team won, it's likely your food ...Read more

Bell's palsy not likely attributable to COVID vaccine

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: In 2002, I had a severe case of Bell's palsy that lasted eight months. I was unable to close my left eye for seven months. The doctors said there was a good chance I would not get back to normal. However, I eventually did. Only a slight indication of a droopy mouth remains, which isn't noticeable unless you are looking for it. ...Read more

Signs you may need more omega-3s

"Omega Man" was a 1971 Charlton Heston movie about survival in a diseased and dangerous world. Film critic Gene Siskel gave it one star; Roger Ebert begrudged it two. Guess the movie makers should have made more of the omega than the man! Omegas -- well, omega-3s -- are superstars.

Omega-3s -- DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), ALA (alpha-linolenic ...Read more

There are treatments for overactive bladder

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: Is there a cure for overactive bladder? -- R.H.

ANSWER: The underlying reason for overactive bladder is not well understood, and although there are medications to treat symptoms, there is not a cure for the condition.

The main symptoms of overactive bladder are urinary symptoms, especially urgency (the need to go RIGHT AWAY), ...Read more

Acute pain medication regimen reduces opioid use and pain too

In 1834, Richard Henry Dana Jr. took a two-year sea voyage from Boston to California and chronicled it in his book "Two Years Before the Mast," revealing the hardships and pain of the daring adventure.

Today, researchers at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston are revealing the incredible benefits of their MAST regimen, ...Read more

Autism is a spectrum, not a stereotype

Health Advice / Keith Roach /

DEAR DR. ROACH: Are people with autism spectrum disorder normal functioning? I'm thinking of "Rain Man," and I don't know how to behave around a friend who has this diagnosis. -- R.S.

ANSWER: Autism and related disorders are much more commonly diagnosed now compared with years ago, probably due mostly to better recognition of the condition -- ...Read more