The evidence on giving thanks

As most of us  spend the upcoming week cooking turkeys, gathering with family and friends, and preparing for the holiday season, I found myself returning to a blog post that Karl wrote several years ago about the evidence surrounding gratitude. As my life feels increasingly busy, I find it helpful to remember that giving thanks is not simply a nice sentiment – it’s actually good for you! [Read more...]

An evidence-based education resource

School KidsThis year, I have a child in first grade and another in preschool. As I become more entrenched in school life every year, I have more and more questions about whether our schools are using evidence in making decisions and developing policies. [Read more...]

How to prevent antibiotic overuse

Common-ColdCold and flu season is fast approaching as most of the United States heads into the winter season. At my house, we’ve already had a round of respiratory viruses this week. This is also the time of year that antibiotics are most commonly prescribed. [Read more...]

Exploring the link between diet and mental health in kids

childhood obesityOver the past 30 years, the rate of childhood obesity has more than doubled in the United States, increasing the risks for cardiovascular disease, diabetes and joint problems. Last month, a new systematic review found obesity among kids is associated with yet another health problem. [Read more...]

Growing evidence: Environmental factors influence heart disease

heartIn the United States, we regularly hear messages about how to prevent heart disease. Eat more vegetables.  Exercise more. Avoid fatty meats. But there is a large and growing body of evidence that demonstrates the environment also impacts our risk of developing cardiovascular disease. [Read more...]

Evidence-based elections: Voting laws

vote-buttonAs Americans head to the polls today for mid-term elections, many voters will face new laws that change the voting requirements in their state. [Read more...]

The evidence on video games and brain function

631px-Video_Game_Barnstar_HiresAs the U.S. population continues to age, researchers warn us more people than ever before will grapple with neurological disease like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, as many as 16 million Americans could be suffering from some form of dementia by the year 2050, up from 5 million today. [Read more...]

What we know about pain relief during child birth

baby - skin to skinAlthough epidural anesthesia was first used in the early 1940s, this form of pain relief was popularly used for laboring women until the 1970s. Since then, both health care providers and women have asked all sorts of questions about whether epidurals are safe and effective for women and babies. [Read more...]

Should we teach doctors good “bed-side manner”?

health communicationHaving participated in health care visits for myself, my three children and my mother, I’ve interacted with doctors who have all sorts of personalities: caring and compassionate, business-like, and downright rude. Despite these experiences, I’ve never given much thought to the idea that a physician’s bedside manner can influence patient-care. [Read more...]

A new metric for health care decisions

healthcareDo you remember the last time a doctor gave you a prescription?  You most likely assumed the medicine would work effectively. It turns out, that’s not always the case. [Read more...]