Mallika Marshall, MD

Mallika Marshall, MD, is an Emmy-award winning journalist and physician who serves as the regular Health Reporter at WBZ-TV in Boston. A practicing physician who is Board Certified in both internal medicine and pediatrics, Marshall serves on staff at Harvard Medical School and practices at the Massachusetts General Hospital's (MGH) Chelsea Urgent Care Clinic and MGH Revere Health Center. Marshall is currently a Contributing Editor for Harvard Health Publications (HHP), the publishing division of Harvard Medical School. She has nearly 15 years of media experience, including serving as “HealthWatch” Anchor at WBZ-TV News for 10 years beginning in 2000. A cum laude graduate of Harvard College, Marshall received her medical degree with honors at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine. She completed her medical residency at Harvard in internal medicine and pediatrics. She is a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha Honors Society, the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the National Association of Black Journalists. She also has served on the Board of Trustees for the Urgent Care Foundation and the Board of Directors for Dress for Success Boston. In addition to numerous medical awards, she was an Associate Editor of the Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide.


Posts by Mallika Marshall, MD

To gluten or not to gluten?

Mallika Marshall, MD
Mallika Marshall, MD, Contributing Editor

Gluten is a serious problem for people with celiac disease, but there are many who simply feel that gluten free eating is healthier. The profusion of gluten-free foods makes it a lot easier to eat gluten free than it used to be but , they may contain more sugar and fat to make them taste better and you miss out on some nutrients by avoiding whole grains in your diet.

A placebo can work even when you know it’s a placebo

Mallika Marshall, MD
Mallika Marshall, MD, Contributing Editor

You may have heard of the “placebo effect,” in which people taking an inactive drug as part of a study actually experience an improvement in their symptoms. As it turns out, the placebo effect still exists if you tell people they’re taking a placebo. This “open-label placebo” strategy doesn’t work for every condition, of course, but it’s a promising way to relieve many common symptoms without medication.

The big benefits of plain water

Mallika Marshall, MD
Mallika Marshall, MD, Contributing Editor

Many Americans opt to quench their thirst with drink sodas, juices, and sports drinks instead plain water. Now, a recently published study has confirmed what researchers have been saying for a while: upping your water consumption can help you avoid excess calories and control your weight. So, next time you’re thirsty, try water instead — it’s free, refreshing, and good for you!

Thyroid disease and breast cancer: Is there a link?

Mallika Marshall, MD
Mallika Marshall, MD, Contributing Editor

Researchers have wondered for a long time whether there might be a link between excess thyroid hormone and an increased risk of breast cancer. High levels of thyroid hormone have been shown to mimic estrogen, which fuels many breast cancers. A new study has suggested that there may indeed be a link — but it’s important to put the results into context.

Can your coffee habit help you live longer?

Mallika Marshall, MD
Mallika Marshall, MD, Contributing Editor

Coffee is nearly a national obsession in the United States. For years, experts have debated whether drinking coffee is good for you. Recently published research suggests that regular, moderate coffee consumption is associated with a lower risk of overall mortality, and that heavy consumption of coffee isn’t linked with a greater risk of death.

Low-nicotine cigarettes may help determined smokers cut back

Mallika Marshall, MD
Mallika Marshall, MD, Contributing Editor

A study examining the effects of low-nicotine cigarettes on smoking behavior yielded surprising results. The study volunteers who smoked the low-nicotine cigarettes actually smoked less and had fewer cigarette cravings than those who smoked cigarettes with a higher level of nicotine. Although more research is needed before we can draw any conclusions, it’s possible that very-low-nicotine cigarettes might be a way to mitigate the health dangers of smoking for people determined not to quit.