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Dr. Oz Answers Your Questions
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A viewer's anonymous message to Dr. Oz
Anyone who's seen Dr. Oz on The Oprah Winfrey Show before knows that one of his favorite topics is…poop. Just when we thought there was nothing left to say on this topic, we received this anonymous e-mail:

"Dr. Oz: I'm so embarrassed. This morning I had a B.M. [bowel movement], and I looked in the toilet to see if it was S-shaped. I saw what looked like dozens of tiny long worms. How could worms get in my poop? What do I do?"

"That's why Anonymous wants to remain anonymous," Oprah jokes.

Dr. Oz says Anonymous most likely has pinworm—the most common worm parasite in North America and Europe—which he says affects 20 percent of the kids in the United States. "By the way," Dr. Oz says, "[pinworm] is not dangerous."

"What happens is the little eggs get in your mouth, they hatch, they become active worms in the colon, and then the mothers go out of your anus at night when you're sleeping. They secrete little eggs and a chemical that makes your bottom itch. So you itch your bottom, you get the eggs on your fingertips, you put it on the toys you're playing with or a dish, and then it gets converted to someone else."

If you think your child has pinworm, Dr. Oz says there's a very easy test. "Take a piece of tape. Tape it over their [anus] at nighttime, and when the mother comes out and lays the eggs, you'll capture the eggs in the tape. Then take the tape to your doctor," he says. "It sounds spooky. It's very effective. You catch the eggs, you make a diagnosis, it's a simple treatment [of oral pills without many side effects]—not a big deal."

Parasites are incredibly common and not just found in children. Dr. Oz says 90 percent of humans will have a problem with parasites in their lifetime.
FROM: Ask Dr. Oz III
Published on January 01, 2006

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Dr. Oz's All-Star Advice
America's doctor, Mehmet Oz, wants you to help you get on the path to living better.

"It's pretty simple: You've got to show up in your own life. Too many of us think showing up means literally walking out when it makes sense. We back our way through life, we don't bring together the team. There's never been a championship won by someone that didn't show up on the field.

So, you've got to pull it all together, bring the people around you that you love dearly, the folks you think can help you, the mentors you need, and pay attention to what we're talking about today because these are life lessons that can drastically change your life and the people around you as well. And we're going to do it all together." Let the advice-a-thon begin!

Dr. Oz tackles your health questions:

1. I'm too tired to think about sex. How do I get my energy back?

2. How can I live longer? And what does your "real age" mean?

3. What is my blood pressure and why is it important?

4. I hate vegetables! Why do I have to eat them?

5. What are the red flags that show I am aging too fast?

6. What is a vulva?

7. Why is splurging so bad and what can I do to counteract it if i do?

8. Why do I have a third nipple?

9. How can I live my best life this year?

Go to the first question
PAGE 1 of 10
As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.

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Dr. Oz Answers Your Most Pressing Health Questions
Oprah's favorite doctor will see you now.
Dr. Mehmet Oz
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Q: Do chickens and cows get cancer? And if so, is it dangerous to eat cancerous meat?

A: Just like us, chickens and cows can develop cancer. But cancer is largely a disease of the aging process, and animals raised for food are slaughtered while they're young. If, by some chance, a meat product does contain cancerous cells, cooking it will kill them. And even if your steak tartare came from a cancer-afflicted cow, there's no evidence to suggest you'd suffer any ill effects. Of much greater concern is eating too much red and processed meat, which are linked to cancers of the digestive system. You should also avoid meat cooked at very high temperatures (such as pan-fried or flame-grilled), because the extreme heat produces carcinogens.

Q What should I look for on a sunscreen label?

A: Choose a product marked "broad spectrum"—meaning it protects against UVA and UVB rays—with an SPF of at least 30. But keep in mind that SPF measures how well a sunscreen blocks UVB rays (which cause burns)—not UVA rays (which penetrate deeper and speed aging). There are no labeling standards specifically indicating protection against UVA rays, so be sure your sunscreen has some combination of the chemical UVA-screening ingredients oxybenzone, avobenzone, and ecamsule, and/or at least one of the physical blocking agents titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.
Keep Reading: 8 new skin-saving sunscreens

Q: Nearly every night I get heartburn. Could this increase my risk for a heart attack?

A: No. Heartburn involves the digestive system, not the cardiovascular system. It's the sensation caused by acid reflux, a condition in which gastric acid rises up from the stomach into the esophagus. But chronic heartburn can be a risk factor for a precancerous disorder called Barrett's esophagus. Over time gastric acid damages the lining of the esophagus, and in about 1 percent of cases, this damaged tissue will become cancerous. The problem is that Barrett's esophagus does not cause symptoms, so people with persistent reflux should be monitored closely, typically with endoscopy exams once a year. If found, Barrett's esophagus can be reversed with radiofrequency ablation, an endoscopic procedure involving targeted thermal energy.

Q: Should I be worried about radiation from backscatter airport scanners?

A: These machines emit low levels of radiation—about .1 microsievert per scan, compared to 10 units for every 1,000 miles you fly on a plane. Some scientists argue, though, that backscatter X-rays could cause a small increase in cancer risk, particularly melanoma, because the majority of the scanner's radiation is deposited on the skin. Additionally, the FDA doesn't monitor airport X-ray machines, and if a malfunction occurs, travelers could be exposed to a much higher dose of radiation. Still, the health risk posed by these scanners is very minor, although populations that are more sensitive to radiation may want to opt for the pat-down instead. These include travelers over 65 (the body's cells are less able to repair DNA damage as you age), women with BRCA-1 or BRCA-2 gene mutations, cancer patients, pregnant women, and children.
Keep Reading: Which screenings are safe?

Q: I like white wine, not red. Am I still getting any health benefits?

A: Red wine, made with the skin of the grape, contains more of certain antioxidants than white, which is made after the skins are removed. One powerful antioxidant in red wine, resveratrol, may help prevent cancer and protect the heart by blocking damage from free radicals and reducing inflammation. But consuming any alcohol in moderation can raise HDL ("good" cholesterol), prevent artery damage caused by LDL ("bad" cholesterol), and reduce the formation of blood clots. So both wines offer benefits—in responsible amounts.
Keep Reading: Learn the truth about Oprah, Dr. Oz, and resveratrol

Q: Is one drink a day okay if I have a family history of breast cancer?

A: How's your heart health? While alcohol has been shown to increase the risk of breast cancer, it can also lower the risk of heart disease. Each year far more American women die of heart disease than die of breast cancer; thus, for the average person, the benefits of alcohol outweigh the risks. But if you've inherited a harmful BRCA gene mutation, your risk of breast cancer is dramatically higher than that of the average woman. For a known carrier, drinking any alcohol is probably a bad idea. For others, the odds still favor having the occasional glass of wine.
Keep Reading: The truth about breast self-exams

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As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.

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Dr. Oz Answers Your Questions!
Dr. Mehmet Oz
Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen are tackling questions from listeners on a variety of health topics. Listener Heather asks what kind of diet is most effective for her body considering she is allergic to many plants and is having adverse reactions to her current diet plan. Dr. Roizen advises her to get allergy testing to find out what specific vegetables she may be allergic to, as she may be having a reaction to a pesticide on the food as opposed to the vegetables themselves.

Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen tackle other questions, including one from a woman who wants to know if a salt substitute is an appropriate and effective way to lower salt intake. Another woman seeks effective ways to reduce undereye puffiness, as she has already tried creams, tea bags, cucumbers and many other common remedies without results. Then, Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen give advice to 13-year-old Kayla, who hurt her back playing softball and is looking for effective relief methods. Plus, Crystal wants to know the best treatment for lightening or reducing the appearance of stretch marks.
The information provided here is for entertainment and informational purposes. You should consult your own physician before starting any treatment, diet or exercise program. The opinions expressed by the hosts, guests and callers to Oprah Radio are strictly their own.

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Is It Safe to Take Antidepressants During Pregnancy?
Dr. Mehmet Oz
Photo: Ben Goldstein/Studio D
Q: Is it safe to take antidepressants during pregnancy?

A: Though some drugs (like Wellbutrin) have no established risks, no one can say for sure that any antidepressant is completely safe during pregnancy—and several drugs (like Paxil, which has been associated with fetal heart defects) definitely pose a known danger. Still, you shouldn't stop taking your medication cold turkey. That's because untreated depression can weaken your motivation to maintain a healthy lifestyle, as well as raise your risk of early delivery and postpartum depression. If you're pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, talk to your doctor about the best course of action.

Next: Dr Oz dispels 4 myths about antidepressants

As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.

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Dr. Oz's All-Star Advice
Dr. Oz
When it comes to embarrassing or scary health topics, no one gives you a diagnosis quite like Dr. Oz. "This stuff is doable. We can make it happen," Dr. Oz says. "At the time we are done, you can sit back and say, 'Jeez, why didn't we do that before?'"

Improve your health, one change at a time. Start today!

Dr. Oz tackles your health questions:

1. Are my bowel movements normal?

2. Am I a germaphobe?

3. What kind of bacteria is in my handbag?

4. Is being overweight really that big of a deal?

5. How does high blood pressure and high cholesterol affect my body?

6. I'm young and I eat an unhealthy diet, but I'm not overweight. Am I in the clear?

7. Is there an easy fix for my heartburn?

8. Why does my stomach make such embarrassing noises?

9. What is the most important thing I can do right now to improve my health?

Go to the first question
PAGE 1 of 10
As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.

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