COVID risk for older adults rising again

By Carla K. Johnson and Laura Ungar
Posted on January 04, 2023

Coronavirus-related hospital admissions are climbing again in the United States, with older adults a growing share of U.S. deaths, and less than half of nursing home residents up to date on COVID vaccinations. These alarming signs portend a difficult winter for seniors, which worries 81-year-old nursing home resident Bartley O’Hara, who said he is “vaccinated up to the eyeballs”... READ MORE

Get tested if your legs hurt while walking

By Jim Miller
Posted on December 28, 2022

Dear Savvy Senior, I started a walking program a few months ago to help me lose weight. I’ve been having problems with my legs and hips hurting during my walk, although they feel better once I stop. I thought it was just because I’m getting old, but my neighbor was telling me about a leg vein disease she has called PAD and thinks I may have something similar. What can you tell me ... READ MORE

Tasty lentils contain fiber, protein, vitamins

By Lisa Milbrand
Posted on December 27, 2022

If you’re looking to eat healthier, lentils — whether black, brown, yellow, green or red — should be among the top foods in your meal plan. Fortunately, learning how to cook lentils isn’t too complicated. Lentils have nutritional benefits to cover all of your bases: Lentils are rich in fiber: One of the biggest benefits of legumes like lentils is their high levels of fiber,... READ MORE

How meds and supplements can interact

By Michael Schuh
Posted on December 22, 2022

Dear Mayo Clinic: As I have gotten older, doctors have placed me on more medications, such as for high blood pressure and cholesterol. Also, as I age, I have chosen to take some supplements that are supposed to improve my memory, reduce cholesterol and prevent cancer. Should I worry about these supplements interacting with one another or my medications? A: With age come more chronic... READ MORE

Questions about memory, using weights

By Howard LeWine, M.D.
Posted on December 16, 2022

Q: When should a person start worrying about becoming more forgetful? How can you tell if it’s normal memory loss, or something more serious? A: For many of us, memory blips become more common as we get older. Our brains form fewer connections now, so our memory is not as strong as it used to be. As we get older, the processing speed of our brain slows down, so we can’t recall... READ MORE

Nature and nurture affect our resilience

By Lindsey Tanner
Posted on December 14, 2022

There’s an old saying that adversity makes you stronger. Real life shows that’s not always true, but the adage highlights an evolving debate among scientists about resilience. After traumatic events and crises such as child abuse, gun violence or a pandemic, what explains why some people bounce back, while others struggle to cope? Is it nature — genes and other inherent traits? Or... READ MORE

Should you worry about lead exposure?

By Marissa Hauptman, M.D., MPH, and Ryan Brewster, M.D.
Posted on December 13, 2022

Through much of the 20th century, lead was a common part of American life. It was used in paint, plumbing fixtures, water pipes and many consumer goods. Automobiles guzzled leaded gasoline to improve engine performance. Meanwhile, the medical community increasingly recognized the toxic effects of lead on the body, particularly in children. Since the 1970s, sweeping regulations have... READ MORE

How long to escape a fire? Two minutes

By The Red Cross of the National Capital & Greater Chesapeake Region
Posted on December 12, 2022

Two minutes is the amount of time that fire experts say you may have to safely escape a home fire before it’s too late. Home fire responses are 30% higher during cold months than warmer times of year. On average, the Red Cross responds to around 1,300 home fire-related emergencies each year across the greater Washington area. “Practice your two-minute home fire escape drill and... READ MORE

Foods that do best when not refrigerated

By Hilary Meyer
Posted on December 09, 2022

One of the best ways to eat a healthier diet is to eat more fruits and vegetables. And one of the worst things about buying fresh fruits and vegetables is watching them go bad in your produce drawer and throwing them away. No one wants to throw their food and money in the garbage. One way to help ensure you’re eating your produce is to make a plan. Having a few meals and snacks planned ... READ MORE

Meditation can be as good as medication

By Lindsey Tanner
Posted on December 08, 2022

Mindfulness meditation worked as well as a standard drug for treating anxiety in the first head-to-head comparison. The study tested a widely used mindfulness program that includes 2½ hours of classes weekly and 45 minutes of daily practice at home. Participants were randomly assigned to either the program or daily use of a generic drug sold under the brand name Lexapro for depression... READ MORE