What’s your coffee habit doing to your liver? The answer may surprise you

What was your first thought when you woke up this morning? Was it … coffee? If you’re an avid coffee-drinker, you’ll be excited to know there are more perks in your cup than the pick-me-up.

Are all forms of smoking bad?

You’ve heard said it before: Smoking is bad for your health. But usually, when we talk about smoking, the conversation centers around cigarettes. But are all forms of smoking harmful? Science points toward a resounding yes. No form of smoking is completely “safe” or “risk-free.” Even new forms of smoking like e-cigarettes can pose risks, especially because they have yet to be regulated the same way cigarettes are, so it isn’t always clear what chemicals are in them or how much.

What does the gallbladder do and how can you be proactive?

The gallbladder may not be the most glamorous organ, but it’s an important one. Unless you’re a health care worker, or you’ve recently taken an anatomy class, you may not even know what the gallbladder does or why you need it. Despite its inconspicuous size, the gallbladder can cause some serious pain and damage when you’re not proactive, so take a few minutes to educate yourself about its function and how you can keep it healthy.

Holy smokes! Big Tobacco finds loophole to entice teenagers

I remember a time when smoking was everywhere – movies, TV shows, commercials, magazine ads, billboards, airplanes, restaurants and ballparks. It was Don Draper’s world, and we just coughed our way through it. Slowly, over time, the surgeon general’s dire warning of cigarettes causing lung cancer and other health-related issues resonated with the general public. Coupled with legislative action at the state and local levels, smoking became less of a future health risk and financial health care burden as Americans told the cigarette industry to kiss their butts goodbye.

Know the dangers of a high body fat percentage

It is often assumed that a skinny person is healthy and that a heavier person is unhealthy. But simply looking at the outside doesn’t tell you enough. For example, a thin female who loves yoga and never seems to gain weight may look like the picture of health to some, but a body composition assessment might show that she carries a lot more fat than she should and not enough muscle. Likewise, a heavyset football player may be strong and muscular, but have a high body fat percentage that’s putting his health at risk. You could have a high body fat percentage whether you’re 100 lbs. or 300 lbs.

Why genetic testing may be the future for better pain relief

A man was in an auto accident that left his right leg shattered. Over the next 4+ years, he faced relentless leg and back pain. Despite taking strong pain killers and increasing the dosages, his pain was still bad enough to rate it a 10 on a 10-point scale. It got to the point where the dosage could only be increased so much, and trying various other medications proved futile. That’s when doctors suggested genetic testing. What they found changed everything.

How much do you know about vitamin B2?

The most famous B vitamin, it seems, is B12 – a popular choice for vitamin injections for people looking for an extra energy boost. But have you heard about vitamin B2? It is also called riboflavin and is one of the eight important B vitamins.

Try this “MAP” for depression relief: Meditation plus exercise

Many people have experienced depression. Around 6.7 percent of U.S. adults have had a major depressive episode within the last year, the National Institute of Mental Health reports. This disorder can be debilitating, and it goes beyond simply feeling sad and lethargic. Symptoms may include an inability to focus, concentrate or make decisions. But how can you get relief from depression symptoms?

Don’t let stigma of memory loss stop you from proactively discussing issues with your doctor

A study that looked at government data on more than 10,000 people aged 45 and up with memory complaints found that just 1 in 4 discussed these concerns with their doctor at a routine check-up. And with increasing age, people were even less likely to talk about their memory issues. The memory loss was often serious enough to affect activities of daily living, such as work, volunteering and/or household chores.

Wake-up call: Sufficient sleep is a necessity

When you think of living a “healthy” lifestyle, what comes to mind? It seems exercise and nutrition get all the praise. But what about sleep? In a fast-paced society that places productivity above all else, sleep is sometimes associated with laziness. Or it’s seen as a luxury. But it is just as critical as the food you put in your body. Getting sufficient sleep isn’t a luxury; it’s a necessity. It seems sleep-deprived Americans are in desperate need of a wake-up call.

Men don't need a ton of iron!

All your life, you are told that iron makes you strong. Just look at Popeye! But what many people don’t realize is that iron is a double-edged sword. Not enough, and you may end up with anemia. Too much, and you may end up with serious health problems. The latter point is especially important for men, who need much less than women of child-bearing age.

Iron – why it is necessary and what foods have it

Iron helps make red blood cells. Red blood cells transport oxygen to your body’s cells. Without enough iron, your organs may not get the oxygen they need to function properly. Not having enough iron is called iron-deficiency anemia, which is the most common form of anemia.

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