Soda Got You Down? Not So Fast!

A new research study (not yet published) sponsored by the NIH suggests that drinking sweetened beverages is associated with an increased risk of depression. Boasting a total sample size of 263,925 individuals ranging from 50 to 71 years old, the study began in 1995-1996 when researchers evaluated consumption of soda, tea, fruit punch and coffee. About 10 years later, the same individuals were asked whether or not they had been diagnosed with depression since 2000 (so beginning about 5 years after the study began). Continue reading…

The ‘No Flu-Freakout Zone’

Yes…it’s flu season, yes…it’s worse this year than previous years and yes…it even made it to epidemic status (which means it’s in higher numbers than expected). Yet watching the news in the past few days made me feel like this has turned into a zombie apocalypse rather than a cyclical event (albeit with higher infections than we’re used to). Am I the only one that thinks the media is doing a tremendous job at sensationalizing and over-hyping this? It may be a ratings-booster, but is it really worth freaking out over? Continue reading…

The Dreaded PCA Key

Last week I had the pleasure to, once again, meet and deal with our health care system. Due to an undisclosed condition (my health, my choice), I had to have open/classic liver surgery (the kind that comes with a hefty scar and recovery period). And while I came out safe, sound, and pleased with the results, there’s one little caveat that I will forever keep at the forefront should I ever need to revisit it again. I’m not talking about things to know regarding hospitals, insurance or procedures. It’s a simple tool called Patient Controlled Analgesia (or PCA for short).  Continue reading…

Publication Bias: Enemy of the e-Patient

As a student of Public Health, I’ve had the opportunity to critically understand our research system and the way our nation’s academics take on the pursuit of knowledge and discovery. Through my years as an undergraduate student/researcher and now a graduate student/researcher, I’ve seen examples of great research papers and examples of papers that quickly find their way to the fireplace. It’s probably fair to say that all papers that get published into journals have some sort of contribution to make, yet many of them contribute the wrong type of knowledge, frequently misleading the industry and the readers. Remember that paper you read yesterday about coffee and cancer? Read another one today that contradicts it.

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