Harvard Health Blog

Join the discussion with experts from Harvard Health Publishing and others like you on a variety of health topics, medical news and views.

10 tricks to reduce salt (sodium) in your diet

Most people regularly exceed the recommended daily amount of sodium, but making some simple food substitutions in your regular eating habits can help you trim your salt intake.

How long will my hip or knee replacement last?

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Anyone who needs a knee or hip replacement wants to know if it will be permanent, or if the replacement will need to be replaced at some point. While this is impossible to predict, and many factors affect longevity of replacement joints, data from past surgeries can help give some idea of what a person can expect.

An insider’s guide to a hospital stay

No one wants to be have to go to a hospital, but there are times when it’s unavoidable. Having some advance knowledge about the hospital experience may help you feel more comfortable in the event you or someone you know has to go to the ER or be admitted.

Warning signs of a concussion

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

A concussion can occur without a strong impact. Sometimes it’s obvious a child has suffered a concussion, but in other instances there can be more subtle warning signs of a concussions that linger for weeks or months.

Depression: Common medication side effect?

Monique Tello, MD, MPH

Contributing Editor

Many medications list depression or suicidal thoughts as a possible side effect, even those for unrelated conditions like high blood pressure or allergies. A recent study found that these side effects may be more prevalent than previously believed, particularly among those taking multiple medications with these side effects.

T-ball: The ups and downs, and why it can be worthwhile

Steve Calechman


Parents may question whether T-ball is worth their child’s time, but there is definite value in spending time outside, being active, and learning about teamwork. However, this activity, or any other, will only be meaningful if the child wants to do it.

Art therapy: Another way to help manage pain

Matthew Solan

Executive Editor, Harvard Men's Health Watch

Art therapy can be an effective tool in the treatment and management of pain when used as an adjunct to medication. Taking the brain’s focus away from pain improves mood and helps people regain control of their lives.

Autoimmune disease and stress: Is there a link?

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

An observational study found that people diagnosed with stress-related disorders were more likely to develop an autoimmune disease, but was unable to provide proof of a directly causal relationship.

5 habits for moms that help prevent childhood obesity

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

It might be surprising to learn that parents can help fight childhood obesity by taking good care of themselves. A new study found that when mothers follow five healthy lifestyle habits, their kids are much less likely to become obese.

Multigenerational fitness parks

That playground you like to visit with your kids or grandkids may be morphing into a space that is “fun for the whole family” — fitness parks with exercise equipment suitable for people of all ages alongside the more typical child-focused play structures.