Health

Your brain on chocolate

Robert H. Shmerling, MD
Robert H. Shmerling, MD, Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publications

When research finds a connection between consumption of high-flavanol dark chocolate and improved brain function, it’s tempting to interpret it as permission to eat a lot of chocolate, but the truth isn’t quite so simple.

7 tips to help your child start school for the first time

Claire McCarthy, MD
Claire McCarthy, MD, Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publications

If you have a child about to start preschool or kindergarten, there’s a lot to think about and do to get ready for the big day. Planning ahead will make the transition easier for the whole family.

Mind over matter? How fit you think you are versus actual fitness

Monique Tello, MD, MPH
Monique Tello, MD, MPH, Contributing Editor

A study of over 60,000 people who were followed for as long as two decades found that people’s perceptions about their level of activity have a more significant effect on their longevity than their actual fitness.

Ticks and the changing landscape of tick-borne illnesses

Wynne Armand, MD
Wynne Armand, MD, Contributing Editor

Ticks are being found in more places, and they are carrying newly discovered bacteria, meaning it’s more important than ever to protect yourself and your family when you are outdoors.

To the point: Here’s what parents should know and do about Netflix’s To the Bone

Center on Media and Child Health

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Is it safe to take ibuprofen for the aches and pains of exercise?

Robert H. Shmerling, MD
Robert H. Shmerling, MD, Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publications

A study of endurance athletes who took ibuprofen during marathon running raises questions about the wisdom of ibuprofen during exercise, and in addition that people with kidney disease may want to exercise caution when taking these medications.

Can we zap eye floaters away?

Heidi Godman
Heidi Godman, Executive Editor, Harvard Health Letter

Floaters in the eyes are annoying but generally not harmful. An experimental treatment can remove a certain type of floater with a laser, but without further study it’s too soon to recommend it.

Ehlers-Danlos syndrome: A mystery solved

Laura Kiesel
Laura Kiesel, Contributor

Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome is a connective tissue disorder most commonly characterized by joints that stretch too far, pain, and greater susceptibility to injury. Awareness of the condition is not high, which can make getting an accurate diagnosis difficult.

Yoga improves treatment-related symptoms in men with prostate cancer

Charlie Schmidt
Charlie Schmidt, Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Disease

Men who participated in yoga classes twice a week while being treated for prostate cancer reported less fatigue and better urinary and erectile function, compared to other men in the study who did not do yoga.

The best place to launch a healthy lifestyle? Your kitchen

Monique Tello, MD, MPH
Monique Tello, MD, MPH, Contributing Editor

Consuming more meals at home is a smart step toward healthier eating and all the benefits that brings, and preparing healthy meals is not as much of a challenge as it may seem.