In your wildest wellness dreams, scientists would invent a magic capsule to...

  • "Let a person eat whatever she wants without gaining weight."
  • "Eliminate the need for colonoscopies."
  • "Double your willpower."
  • "Get rid of belly fat—but keep the butt and boobs."
  • "Balance hormones."
  • "Make you feel like you've done enough."
  • "Refill iron levels instantly."
  • "Cure cellulite."
  • "Make me love exercise."
  • "Silence my inner critic."

    And some of you are in luck! One day there actually might be a pill to...

    "Cure diabetes, cancer and dementia."
    A cure may not be around the corner, but researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City believe the drug metformin, often used to treat type 2 diabetes, could also delay Alzheimer's, cardiovascular disease, cancer and other ailments that come with old age. They're in the preliminary stages of planning a clinical trial.

    "Banish gray hair."
    Many supplements on the market claim to do just that: They contain an enzyme that stops hair follicles from accumulating hydrogen peroxide, one cause of graying. But the pills aren't evaluated by the FDA, and no studies have proved they work. Reportedly, a major cosmetics company is conducting promising research on another approach, but declined to comment. (They probably don't want to get your hopes up.)

    "Ease pain without being addictive."
    Several pharmaceutical companies are said to be researching safer painkillers that won't cause euphoria and lead to abuse by triggering different mechanisms from those used by drugs like oxycodone. "We're probably within a few years of seeing these medications available," says Christine Rogers, manager of corporate communications for the research organization PRA Health Sciences in Raleigh, North Carolina—which means that soon feeling better may be less of a pain.

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