I’m so lonesome I could cry

The health risks of loneliness and isolation have been known for some time, but more recently research has shown the specific effects in the brain. Finding ways to make connections with other people is the best “medicine” to alleviate the mental and physical effects of loneliness.

Does your child need a tonsillectomy?

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

While tonsillectomies are still common, the number performed has decreased significantly over the past half-century due to the likelihood of complications after surgery. But there are situations when a tonsillectomy is definitely necessary, so it’s important to consider the risks and benefits before making the decision.

When dying is a rebirth

Linnea Olson

Guest Contributor

Almost a decade ago, after exhausting treatment options for lung cancer, Linnea Olson was given only a few months to live. But her participation in an early clinical trial — targeting a then newly identified mutation associated with lung cancer — produced an amazing response. Living with what remains a terminal illness, Linnea is embracing new personal goals, experiencing a creative renewal, and appreciating every moment.

The story of your life and the power of memoir

Matthew Solan

Executive Editor, Harvard Men's Health Watch

Growing older can bring feelings of a loss of self, but making the effort to create a record of your life can be a therapeutic pursuit, and can also be welcomed and appreciated by other family members.

What patients — and doctors — need to know about vitamins and supplements

Monique Tello, MD, MPH

Contributing Editor

While certain groups of people, and those who have certain conditions, can benefit from taking vitamins or supplements, most people will do better obtaining the nutrients they need from eating a health, balanced diet.

FDA approves new drug for men at high risk of prostate cancer spread

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

Men whose PSA levels continue rising even after surgery or radiation therapy may have a new treatment option with the approval of the drug apalutamide.

Eating well to help manage anxiety: Your questions answered

Uma Naidoo, MD


Paying closer attention to diet is important for people with anxiety. Making dietary changes in favor of a balanced diet that emphasizes whole, unprocessed foods and minimizes added sugars helps smooth out the highs and lows that can contribute to anxiety.

In children and teens, depression doesn’t always look like sadness

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Aside from the more common behavioral indicators that a person may be depressed, there are several other changes in behavior that can be signs of depression in children and teens. If you notice any of these, consult a doctor or a mental health professional for advice.

Why it’s so hard to lose excess weight and keep it off: The Biggest Losers’ experience

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

As a person loses weight, the body reacts by lowering its metabolic rate to conserve energy, an evolutionary adaptation that makes it harder to lose additional weight. A study of participants from The Biggest Loser found that this metabolic adjustment persists for years.

Can you rewire your brain to get out of a rut? (Yes you can…)

Srini Pillay, MD


We’ve all had times when we feel like we are in a rut. This can happen because of the brain’s built-in tendency to follow established patterns. But now researchers have shown that it’s possible to undo established ways of thinking, opening a pathway to increased creativity.