What Did You Give Up?

Lent came early this year – tough to have Valentine’s Day the second day of this season if you gave up chocolates! While certainly not everyone practices Lenten observances, I think most people are familiar with the general concept of offering some sort of self-discipline as part of a religious practice, so this is a good opportunity for me to share a thought about the mix of religion and medicine.

As a physician- especially as a Catholic one- I really appreciate Lent. Just as New Year’s resolutions for healthy changes are fading away, in comes Lent to save the … Read more

Till We Meet Again…A Special Note to my WLFP Patients

To my wonderful patients from West Lake Family Practice:

This note is a month overdue, not from neglect, but from the inadequacy of my words each time I sat down to write. I simply cannot express what a privilege it has been to care for you and your families. Many of you have been trusting your healthcare to me for almost two decades- first at my practice on 38th street and then in Westlake. I truly cherish our friendships and shared experiences- through occasionally bewildering medical challenges and with your “real life” experiences, both the joyous and the sorrowful. When … Read more

P90X – Bring It!

Okay, my post about the FB pledge to better health with P90X has generated lots of questions for me (and I suppose smiles for the makers of the DVD- and NO, I do not have any financial or other ties to them!) I will explain what it is and why I personally enjoyed it, but more importantly, I want to encourage you to find what will push YOU a bit out of your comfort zone.

P90X is a series of exercise DVDs. To be honest, I learned about it several years ago when I was in a hotel exercise room … Read more

Facebook Diet!

Happy February! How are those New Year’s Resolutions holding up for you? I hope at least a couple healthy choices are sticking with you…If not, I’ve got a social media suggestion that might just keep you on the straight and narrow. Meet the “Facebook Diet” concept!

Full credit for this idea comes from my high school friend, Anne White. In fairness, in her case, I should call it a FB Exercise Plan, but the concept is easily extended to other healthy choices such as pumping up your fruits and veggies, quitting smoking, or yes, exercise. Back to Anne. In … Read more

SPA Water – At YOUR House!

Over the holidays, I went to a gathering for teenage girls that included a fabulous cookie exchange. There were tempting gingerbread cookies, snickerdoodles, chocolate everythings, and good old-fashioned Christmas cookies to tempt every palate. Imagine my surprise and delight when I left this party with a HEALTHY idea! What was it? SPA Water!

In a large, beautiful, clear glass dispenser, the hostess (thank you, Toni Holmes!) had simply sliced up whatever citrus fruit she had on hand- oranges & lemons- and added them to water and ice. I found myself (as did the other moms and many of the girls) … Read more

What about Tamiflu? Should you take it?

So if you GET the flu, should you take Tamiflu? Or less known, Relenza?

Ah, that’s the million dollar question…literally, since Tamiflu and Relenza are the only drugs FDA approved and indicated for this year’s flu. These drugs are flying off the shelves as the flu season kicks into full gear, and we are desperate to get over the flu as fast as possible. Much is being debated these days about the efficacy of these anti-viral drugs. What do we know?

We know that antiviral treatment typically shortens the symptoms of the flu by at least twenty-four hours. We know … Read more

Flu Vaccine – It’s Not Too Late!

Okay, it’s January, and now EVERYONE you know is getting the flu! Is it too late for you to get vaccinated? ABSOLUTELY NOT! The truth is that now that we’re all scared, it’s tough to find somewhere that has the flu vaccine in stock! Call your doctor or your pharmacy and find out how many they have left, then jump in your car and head over.

This year is another one of those “really bad” flu years. Yes, if you are vaccinated today, you have to wait a couple weeks for your shot to protect you. BUT…the flu season is … Read more

2013 – A Year for YOU!

Happy New Year! I love new beginnings- who doesn’t? Whether it is the first of the month, your birthday, an anniversary, or yes, the NEW YEAR- give yourself the precious gift of a new start!

Since this is my blog about all things healthy, I wish for you specifically to give yourself the gift of a new start for health…whatever is most important to YOU.
90% of us struggle with our weight. Whether it is fighting that same darn 10-20 pounds that we battle every year, or perhaps the first time that our metabolism packed its bags and deserted us, … Read more

Can’t Get Rid of that COUGH?

This time of year especially, coughs seem to stick around forever. Here in Austin, the culprit may be seasonal allergies, but overall the major cause of persistent coughs is viral upper respiratory infections- from both simple “colds” and the big, bad flu. With these infections, after you get past the headaches, and stuffy nose part, you find yourself coughing- often up to SIX WEEKS after the initial illness. Sometimes it’s a minor “clear your throat” type of cough, while other times, it’s the crazy fits of coughing that keep you from sleeping.

Is there anything that can be done for Read more

Feeling SAD? LIGHTen Up!

While everyone around you is humming Christmas songs, lighting their menorahs or making ski vacation plans , are you left feeling sad? Perhaps it’s not the holiday blues, but SAD- Seasonal Affective Disorder. This depressive disorder was formally named only a few decades ago, in the 1980’s. It affects over half a million people each winter, including some symptoms in up to a third of patients seeing their primary care physicians during this season.

Who gets seasonal affective disorder? It’s most common in women (3:1 over males) and young adults 20-30 years old, but it is seen in across the … Read more