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.

Mindfulness apps: How well do they work?

James Cartreine, PhD

Contributing Editor

The goal of mindfulness training is to enhance well-being by increasing your awareness of the world around you through sensory immersion. People who are interested in trying mindfulness meditation may want to consider starting with a smartphone app.

No more counting sheep: Proven behaviors to help you sleep

Millions of people have trouble sleeping, or don’t get enough quality sleep. Changes to your daytime habits and pre-bedtime behavior can consistently help you get better sleep.

Coffee may help your skin stay healthy

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

The cause of the skin condition rosacea is unknown, but some believe that immune system function plays a role. A new study found that women who had significant daily coffee consumption were less likely to be diagnosed with rosacea, but there is no proof that the connection is causal.

Helping a child with obsessive-compulsive disorder

If a child has obsessive-compulsive disorder, the condition affects everyone else in the family. Understanding OCD and learning helpful strategies to support the child can ease distress all around.

Where people die

Robert H. Shmerling, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

Most people would prefer not to die in a hospital if possible, though it’s not something people want to think about. While deaths of hospital patients, and those in emergency rooms, have been on the decline, end-of-life care and advance planning are still important considerations.

What parents need to know — and do — about e-cigarettes

Claire McCarthy, MD

Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing

The rising use of e-cigarettes among adolescents is worrisome, because they still contain nicotine and because using them increases the likelihood of later tobacco use. Parents should educate themselves about these devices and the risks they pose.

Investigators unveil metastatic prostate cancer’s genomic landscape

Charlie Schmidt

Editor, Harvard Medical School Annual Report on Prostate Diseases

Localized prostate cancer that is diagnosed before it has a chance to spread typically responds well to surgery or radiation. But when a tumor metastasizes and sends malignant cells elsewhere in the body, the prognosis worsens. Better treatments for men with metastatic prostate cancer are urgently needed. In 2018, scientists advanced toward that goal by […]

Do I need orthotics? What kind?

While many common foot conditions can be helped with a pair of orthotic shoe inserts, they are not the solution for every problem, and there are different types of orthotics for different applications. But before investing in orthotics, you may want to consider a new pair of shoes.

Alcohol and headaches

Do you sometimes get a headache after drinking red wine or mixed drinks? It’s a common belief that red wine is more likely to give you a headache than other types of alcohol, but there is very little evidence to support this.

Love those legumes!

Monique Tello, MD, MPH

Contributing Editor

Legumes like beans, chickpeas, and lentils are full of healthy nutrients, fiber, and protein, and a diet that includes them regularly can help lower the risk of diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and more. It’s easy to incorporate more legumes into your eating pattern, starting with a recipe for hummus.