Recent Blog Articles
Easy ways to shop for healthful, cost-conscious foods
When — and how — should you be screened for colon cancer?
7 organs or glands you may do just fine without
How to help your child get the sleep they need
What color is your tongue? What's healthy, what's not?
Immune boosts or busts? From IV drips and detoxes to superfoods
The new RSV shot for babies: What parents need to know
Dealing with thick, discolored toenails
Prostate cancer: A new type of radiation treatment limits risk of side effects
Harvard Health Ad Watch: Why are toilets everywhere in this drug ad?
Harvard Health Blog
Read the latest posts from experts at Harvard Health Publishing covering a variety of health topics and perspectives on medical news.
Back pain: Will treatment for the mind, body—or both—help?
Low back pain is a leading cause of disability worldwide. A recent review of dozens of studies suggests that combining physical therapy with psychological approaches to treating pain led to better overall results in improvement of pain.
Colon cancer screening decisions: What's the best option and when?
Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, and rates are rising, particularly in younger people. It can be prevented with screening tests; there are several different types of tests that are performed in different ways, and guidelines for when testing should begin and how often people should be tested.
Cognitive effects in midlife of long-term cannabis use
As more US states have legalized recreational cannabis or passed medical cannabis laws, public perception that cannabis is a harmless substance is growing. But its long-term benefits and risks remain unclear, and research has revealed consistently that heavy long-term cannabis use can affect cognition in midlife.
If climate change keeps you up at night, here's how to cope
Climate anxiety is distress related to worries about how the effects of climate change. It's more likely to affect adolescents and young adults, leading to chronic stress, depression, anxiety, behavioral problems, and more. What can you do to manage climate anxiety in yourself or a young person in your life?
Year three of the pandemic is underway: Now what?
Despite how it may sometimes seem, the COVID-19 pandemic is very much still with us. This is a good time to pause and assess where we are now and what you need to know about vaccines, boosters, and other measures to help you stay well.
Struggling with migraine hangovers? Read this
Migraines can last hours or days and span several distinct phases. A post-headache phase leaves as many as four out of five migraine sufferers feeling like they have a hangover. Experts recommend different approaches to help ward off lingering symptoms depending on their intensity.
Younger adults with kidney disease struggle with health disparities
Chronic kidney disease affects an estimated 37 million people in the US. If caught and treated early, serious problems can be avoided. But research suggests barriers to care are highest for Black and Hispanic people with advanced kidney disease, and also for younger adults.
Ring vaccination might help curtail monkeypox outbreaks
The monkeypox outbreak currently traveling around the globe is the largest ever recorded outside of western and central Africa. Controlling this virus demands preventive measures, and one method that has worked to contain previous disease outbreaks may be effective for monkeypox as well.
Weight stigma: As harmful as obesity itself?
Weight stigma is discrimination based on a person's weight, and it can lead to poor health and increased weight gain. One way to combat weight stigma is to use person-first language, and it's also important for health care providers to make sure they are not perpetuating this stigma when dealing with patients.
Considering pregnancy and have lupus? Plan ahead
In the past, people with lupus were advised to avoid pregnancy because doctors believed it was too risky. That's no longer true: in most cases, following expert guidelines can make a successful pregnancy possible. It's wise to think ahead, and to be aware of some important issues.
Some men whose prostate cancer progresses can safely delay treatment
Prostate cancer can progress over long durations, and if a man's tumor has features that predict slow growth, he can opt for active surveillance instead of immediate treatment. But when the time for treatment comes, up to a third of men still decide against it. Now, a new study finds that for some of these men, treatment can be safely delayed.
Heart-healthy habits for children and teens lengthen lives
Researchers who began collecting data on thousands of people, starting when they were children and following up decades later, found that five risk factors influence health outcomes in adulthood. Parents should know the important steps they can take to get their children started toward healthy lives as adults.
Monkeypox: An unfamiliar virus spreading fast — sound familiar?
More than two years after COVID-19 reached the US, an outbreak of monkeypox is spreading fast outside of Africa. This virus is not new, and it's likely to be less dangerous than COVID, but it's still important to be aware of its symptoms, spread, treatment, and prevention.
Diabetes: Does a long-term study reinforce or change approaches to prevention?
Over two decades ago, the Diabetes Prevention Program study showed that type 2 diabetes could be slowed or even prevented in people with early signs of it. Now, a long-term follow-up study focusing on death rates from several causes has produced some surprising results.
War anxiety: How to cope
News and social media are filled with disturbing stories and images. Anxiety about war, coming on top of two years of the pandemic, is hitting us particularly hard. The symptoms of war anxiety can be physical or mental; knowing what tools to use and how can help break the anxiety cycle.
Want to try veganism? Here's how to get started
Some people decide to adopt a vegan diet because of concerns about the health effects of eating animal products; for others it's more about concern for animal welfare and the environment. Regardless of the motivation, those who want to make this change should anticipate potential pitfalls and be aware of issues specific to vegan eating.
Vitamin B6 flies under the radar: Are you getting enough?
Vitamin B6 helps with the body's enzyme reactions, immune system health, brain chemicals, and more, but it doesn't get a lot of attention. The body can't synthesize it, so people need to get it from food, and a recent study found that a surprisingly high percentage of people may be deficient in vitamin B6.
The formula shortage is hurting families: What parents should know and do
With the current baby formula shortage, parents all over the country are upset, confused, and scared. While formula companies and the government are working to restore the supply, it may take a while before it's easy to buy formula. In the meantime, here are some do's and don'ts for parents to be aware of.
Gyn Care 101: What to know about seeing a gynecologist
There are many reasons you might want or need to see a gynecologist or seek gyn care from your health care team. It helps to understand who will provide your care, what to expect during the visit, what to discuss, and how to have a positive experience during the visit.
Strong legs help power summer activities: Hiking, biking, swimming, and more
Legs are the foundation for many enjoyable activities—running, bicycling, swimming, and more. Building strong leg muscles can improve your performance, build endurance, and reduce your risk of injury. These exercises will work all of the major muscle groups in your legs.
What is a successful mindset for weight loss maintenance?
Most people are able to lose weight in the short term, but will probably regain that weight as time passes. By studying people who lose weight and are able to maintain the loss for several years, insight into their approach can help others understand the strategies that are most likely to lead to long-term success.
French fries versus almonds: Calorie for calorie, which comes out on top?
A study compared eating a serving of French fries every day for a month to eating a serving of almonds with the same number of calories, and found that levels of some health markers were similar between the two groups — but those numbers don't tell the full story.
Summer camp 2022: Having fun and staying safe
After all we've been through during the last couple of years, many families and kids are looking forward to being able to return to summer camp. But COVID-19 is still with us and parents need to consider this as they make plans for safe and fun summer activities.
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