Blog Posts by The Editors at Sharecare

  • What You Should Know About Your ER

    The American College of Emergency Physicians grades U.S emergency medical care at a D+.The American College of Emergency Physicians grades U.S emergency medical care at a D+.

    By: Darria Long Gillespie, MD, MBA

    If you have an emergency, you assume that your 911 services and ER will be ready to take care of you, right?

    Maybe not. The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) released their "2014 Emergency Medicine Report Card" and the U.S. as a whole got a grade that you wouldn't bring home to Mom -- a D+. One important distinction -- this was NOT a grade of ERs and ER doctors, but instead an evaluation of how well the country supports emergency care.

    When you need to go to the ER, having a good ER doctor is crucial. But just as crucial is the state and federal "infrastructure" needed to maintain emergency rooms for true emergencies. As an ER doctor, I can and do treat the elderly lady sick with pneumonia because she was unable to get a vaccine, or the man whose leg infection became severe because he was unable to see an outpatient doctor. I also see the pedestrian struck by a vehicle at an unsafe intersection -- an accident that could have

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  • America’s 10 Best Cities for Fitness 2014

    Is your town among the 10 best cities for exercise, or is it one of the most sedentary? Click through to find out.

  • 5 Pregnancy Worries to Ditch

    Pregnant woman concerned about her baby.

    By: Darria Long Gillespie, MD, MBA

    I'll never forget the two weeks in the middle of my pregnancy when my husband and I were waiting for the results of a repeat ultrasound. I'd already had one, which showed possible growth discrepancies. I then spent the next two weeks wondering what I had done wrong, accompanied by varying states of a fear and spontaneous tears that I've never known before. I leaned on the support of my wonderful and patient close friends - many of who had similar experiences. As my husband and I finally heard the good news that everything was okay, I saw this as an opportunity to help other moms-to-be going through the same.

    Common pregnancy screening tests

    It made me wonder -- what else terrifies pregnant women? This week, I went to two experts, Gary Glasser, MD, of Atlanta Gynecology and Obstetrics and Dixie Gilmore, a midwife at Obstetrics and Gynecology of Atlanta, in search of some answers. There are probably lots of things that worry you during

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  • We're Living Longer, but Are We Healthier?

    A new CDC report reveals that people are living longer, but not necessarily healthier.By: Darria Long Gillespie, MD, MBA

    The results from the latest data are in. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Americans on the whole are living longer lives based on 2009 stats (the most recent we have). But not all groups are benefiting as much as others. What does this news mean for you, and what can you do about it?

    There's less heart disease, but higher suicide rates.
    The increase in life expectancy is felt to be due to decreases in heart disease, cancer, accidental injury, stroke and chronic respiratory disease. These changes aren't surprising, says Keith Roach, MD, Chief Medical Officer of Sharecare and co-creator of the RealAge® Test. "We are getting much better at treating heart disease and cancer, as well as prevention of disease. Lifespans would likely be increasing more rapidly if we could get better control of the obesity epidemic."

    Find out the true age of your body! Take the RealAge Test.

    The CDC data is also consistent with

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  • A Nutty Way to Fight Aging

    Regularly eating nuts can add years to your life. Regularly eating nuts can add years to your life. By: Hope Cristol

    Who says holiday treats have to be unhealthy? At your next party, just skip the bacony appetizers and head for the bowl of mixed nuts. Staring at a gourmet gift basket? Rip open the roasted almonds. You could be adding years to your life.

    By now you probably know that nuts are nutritional powerhouses that help keep weight, blood sugar and cholesterol in check. But new research shows the ultimate benefit: Regularly eating nuts -- including pistachios, walnuts and even peanuts -- may help you live longer.

    Visit our Anti-Aging Topic Center

    A study published last month in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) looked at nut consumption and total mortality among more than 100,000 people over more than two decades. The findings were significant: People who ate nuts seven or more times a week had a 20% lower death rate than those who didn't eat nuts. And that's not all. When researchers looked at specific causes of death, they found that regular nut-eaters

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  • Holiday Hazards! 4 Top Ways to Avoid the ER

    Man standing on a ladder putting a star on his Christmas tree

    By: Darria Long Gillespie, MD, MBA

    Holiday caroling party? Check.

    Spending time with the family? Check.

    Unplanned trip to the ER? Check…oh...wait a minute…

    The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reported 15,000 holiday-decorating related injuries last year between November and December. Couple that with the increased incidence of heart attacks around the winter holidays -- and you'll understand why ER's are a busy place for the next two weeks.

    Got a question for Dr. Darria? Ask it here.

    Keep Your Heart Merry
    Last year, Christmas Day was actually somewhat slow in the ER -- then everyone came in even sicker on December 26. Doctors speculate that delaying care "because it's a holiday" may be one of the reasons that we see MORE deadly heart attacks this time of year. If you have a heart condition, do the following to minimize any risks:

    1. Take it easy. Lots of people get wound up around the holidays -- but try to think of them as a time to relax and

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  • 10 Biggest Drinking Cities of 2013

    Friends drinking beer at a bar

    By: Rachael Anderson

    Tis the season for hot toddies, Christmas ale and eggnog. While drinking a little (no more than one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men) can actually be good for your health, you don't want to overdo it. Guzzling more than two to four drinks daily can make your RealAge up to 3.5 years older if you're a man and 7.3 years older if you're a woman. And it's not just excessive drinking that's the problem. Binge drinking (downing four or more drinks at one time - think New Year's Eve) is even worse, upping your risk for heart disease. So in the spirit of the holidays, and all those alcohol-filled parties, we put together our list of the biggest drinking cities in America for 2013 broken down by women and men.

    Find out the true age of your body! Take the RealAge Test.

    1. Memphis/Knoxville
    Folks in Tennessee may be partying a bit too much. When it comes to alcohol abuse, women from Memphis and men from Knoxville top our list. Both cities are in

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  • Guys, Should You Worry If "It" Won't Go Down?

    Hands of hospital patient on lap

    By: David Zimmerle

    If you've seen commercials for erectile dysfunction meds on TV, you've probably heard the warnings about four-hour erections. (A detail like that is hard to miss.) A new study says that the medical problem the ads are talking about, called "priapism," is more common than thought. But impotence drugs are rarely the cause.

    Find out more about ED causes and cures.

    Priapism is a painful and dangerous condition that happens when blood fills the penis during arousal and fails to drain out. It can cause permanent harm to the organ by preventing oxygen-rich blood from entering. After a while, tissues in the penis actually begin to die due to lack of oxygen.

    Learn about 7 ways to have better sex.

    Researchers at Northwestern University School of Medicine looked at a database of emergency department visits from 2006 to 2009. They estimated that about 10,000 men head to the ER each year for priapism, making the problem about eight times more common than

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  • 5 Simple Tricks to Get Younger

    YOU: The Owner's ManualYOU: The Owner's Manual

    By: Hope Cristol

    In 2005, Michael Roizen, MD, and Mehmet Oz, MD, came out with their hugely popular book YOU: The Owner's Manual, which challenged preconceived notions about how the human body works and ages. In fact, it was inspired by the RealAge® Test, the scientifically backed test that reveals the true age of your body.

    Find out the true age of your body! Take the RealAge Test

    Now the best-selling health manual, last updated in 2009, is out in paperback (and will be available as an e-book January 7). The latest version offers even more insights on how various conditions start -- and how they can be prevented -- based on the latest research. "For instance, there's new information on eye health and vitamins, especially omega-7 fatty acids, which weren't addressed in the last edition," says Dr. Roizen.

    Plus it has an interactive twist: quizzes and videos that typify the YOU Docs' signature wit and wisdom to help you understand your body even better.

    Wait, a

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  • Is Monday Night Football Sacking Your Sperm Count?

    Man watching TV

    By: Rachael Anderson

    Men: Put down the remote and step away from the couch. All that time you spend watching TV (you know who you are) could seriously slash your sperm count.

    Testosterone supplements can hamper your swimmers, too.

    A Harvard School of Public Health study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that healthy men who spent 20 or more hours a week glued to the tube had a 44% lower sperm count than those who watched less TV. But it's not all bad news. Researchers also found that men turbocharged their sperm production by as much as 73% if they did 15 hours a week of moderate to vigorous exercise.

    Try one of our workout plans

    Why TV Hurts, Exercise Helps
    Researchers say the decrease in sperm count could be associated with leading a sedentary lifestyle, which is a risk factor for obesity and other diseases. Being overweight may alter hormone levels and heat up your testicles, causing you to produce less sperm. Exercise, on the other hand,

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