The Secret I Tell All My Patients by Alex McDonald, MD

06 Oct 2021

When I meet a new patient, I often take a moment to get to know them, and I tell them about myself and my personal and professional philosophy and guiding principles as their new family physician. As part of this initial visit, I always tell them, “I have a medical secret. It might not quite […]

Four factors that increase the risk of vaccinated people getting COVID

24 Sep 2021

Two weeks after your second COVID-19 vaccine dose, the protective effects of vaccination will be at their highest. At this point, you’re fully vaccinated. If you still get COVID-19 after this point, you’ve suffered a “breakthrough” infection. Broadly speaking, breakthrough infections are similar to regular COVID-19 infections in unvaccinated people – but there are some differences. […]

Why 7,000 steps a day is the new 10,000 steps a day

21 Sep 2021

Many of us have smart watches or apps on our phones that count the number of steps we do. Usually, we aim to reach at least 10,000 steps a day, which we are often reminded is the target to help improve our health. This target is an arbitrary number that seems to have come from a […]

Best Foods to Eat in Each Decade of Life

17 Sep 2021

Learning how to feed your body properly as you grow older can prevent diseases and other unnecessary complications from arising. In Your 20s: Foods With Protein Protein helps your body build and heal muscle. But active young people, especially those who play sports, may need more. Good sources include lean meat, fish, and dairy products, […]

COVID infections may give more potent immunity than vaccines – but that doesn’t mean you should try to catch it

14 Sep 2021

First, the possibility that a COVID infection leads to longer-lived immunity than vaccination is not far-fetched. Infection exposes our immune system to several viral proteins, whereas the most commonly used COVID vaccines introduce a single antigen: the spike protein. This results in a more directed but also a more restricted immune response than after infection. Although […]

Things Your Body Needs as You Age

13 Sep 2021

Calcium With age, you can start to lose more of this mineral than you absorb. That can make your bones break more easily (osteoporosis), especially for women after menopause. Calcium helps your muscles, nerves, cells, and blood vessels work right. You get most of it from your bones, which get it from food. Women over […]

08 Sep 2021

Older people with prediabetes who followed a diet rich in sardines for 1 year show significant reductions in risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared with those placed on a similarly healthy diet but without the sardines, results from a new randomized trial show.  “A 1-year, sardine-enriched type 2 diabetes-preventive diet in an elderly population with prediabetes exerts […]

Lifesaving Mnemonics to Know

03 Sep 2021

Mnemonic devices — a set of letters or associations that help you remember things — are certainly helpful. But did you know that sometimes, they could also save your life? FAST for Stroke Symptoms The acronym FAST stands for stroke symptoms: F — face drooping (ask the person to smile to check) A — arm weakness (to […]

Camel Milk: A Centuries Old ‘Superfood’ as Diabetes Treatment

16 Aug 2021

If asked to think of a camel, many will invariably call up the emblematic image of a humped animal crossing the horizon in a blazing desert. What they probably won’t think of is a cold glass of milk. But that might soon change, thanks to research uncovering the surprising therapeutic potential contained within camel milk. […]

If I’ve already had COVID, do I need a vaccine? And how does the immune system respond?

13 Aug 2021

Over a year into the pandemic, questions around immune responses after COVID continue to confound.  One question many people are asking is whether the immunity you get from contracting COVID and recovering is enough to protect you in the future. The answer is no, it’s not.  Here’s why. How does our immune response work? Immune […]