Health

  • Look Before You Hop

    Including a real bunny in your child’s Easter basket may seem like a great gift idea. But each year, far too many bunnies end up in animal shelters when families realize that little Peter Cottontail is pretty high maintenance. According to the House Rabbit Society, a national nonprofit rescue and education group, rabbits are not ideal pets for children.

    by O'Rya Hyde-Keller
  • Grass Eating Pooches

    Finding your pooch grazing in the backyard like a Jersey cow isn’t always bad and actually quite normal, explains veterinarian Randy Caviness, DVM, of the Integrative Animal Health Center in Bolton, Massachusetts. “Dogs eat grass because it acts as a natural antacid and is usually soothing for the stomach,” Caviness says.

    My dog Charlie eats grass to make himself throw up. Is this healthy? What can I do?
  • ASk The Doctor: Mercury Exposure

    You bring up an excellent question, and I hear it at my clinic almost weekly. Your experience at the doctor’s office mirrors the typical approach to heavy-metal testing—if the physician tests you at all.

    My family doctor tested my blood for heavy-metal poisoning and told me he saw no sign of lead or mercury. I’ve since heard that the test he used may not be very accurate. Should I get retested?
    By Paul S. Anderson, ND
  • What's My Alternative: Bell's Palsy

    When Ally Crosson, 35, woke up one morning and found the left side of her face partially paralyzed, her first thought was that she’d had a stroke. “I was so frightened,” she says.

    By Linda Childers
  • Write Your Way Slimmer

    The challenge: How to stop a case of the munchies on cold, dark days that dampen your spirits.

    By Meghan Rabbitt
  • Water Works

    Sure, a cup of hot cocoa is the perfect post-sledding, skating, or skiing drink—but it’s important to remind your kids they need water, too, says Brooke de Lench, author of Home Team Advantage (HarperCollins, 2006).

    By Nicole Duncan
  • Hair Loss Scare

    Not necessarily. It’s normal to shed about 50 to 150 strands a day, but if your hair appears to be dramatically thinning, it might be a sign of an underlying condition. While culprits can be as serious as thyroid disease and lupus, hair loss is often caused by poor diet and stress, says Antonio Alvi Armani, MD, author of How to Beat Hair Loss.

    I lose a lot of hair in the shower—should I be worried?
    By Josie Garthwaite
  • Foie Facts

    Think you’re safe from liver disease if you’ve got no history of alcoholism and haven’t turned yellow? Not so fast. The most common cause of this disease isn’t firewater (or even hepatitis), but fatty foods. And even virus-free teetotalers who manifest no symptoms can have liver disease. The statistics may surprise you:

    By Kristin Bjornsen
  • Ask The Doctor: Vitamin B12 Deficiency

    Vitamin B12 deficiency is a growing health problem, caused in whole or in part by vegetarian diets, antacids, diabetes medications, alcoholism, iron deficiency, aging, and digestive disorders (such as malabsorption, Crohn’s disease, and celiac disease).

    I’ve been a vegan for nearly 25 years and was recently diagnosed with low vitamin B12 levels. I’m being treated with B12 shots, but how can I prevent getting deficient again?
    By Nancy Lonsdorf, MD
  • The Beauty Bar: Vitamin K's Best-Kept Secret

    Well-known for its blood clotting and bone health benefits, new research shows vitamin K also plays a role in maintaining the skin’s elasticity.

    By Lindsey Galloway