Health Discovered

Health Discovered

WebMD Chief Physician Editor Neha Pathak, MD, and Chief Medical Officer, John Whyte, MD, MPH, explore fascinating stories to find the unexpected things that help us understand our health.

Episodes

February 29, 2024 24 mins

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men, women, and people of most racial and ethnic groups in the United States alone, with one person dying from heart disease every 33 seconds. February, in addition to American Heart Month, is Black History Month. Black Americans are 30 percent more likely to die from heart disease than non-Hispanic white Americans. What risk factors contribute to heart disease impacting Black Americ...

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Between the extreme opposites of toxic positivity and pessimism lies a healthy middle ground that we often overlook: practical optimism. What does it mean to move through the world with optimism? And even if we often feel pessimistic or hypervigilant, how can we practice optimism on a daily basis to develop this emotional muscle? To explore this topic, we spoke with Sue Varma, MD, a board-certified psychiatrist and author of the ne...

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Over the past century in the U.S., there's been a societal transformation in what we expect from our romantic relationships. It's not just about love anymore; there's a growing belief that our partners will fulfill many roles, including being instrumental in our personal growth. But what do these expectations mean in romantic partnerships? Are they realistic, or are we setting ourselves up for disappointment? We spoke with Lia Love...

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February is American Heart Month, and a pivotal date, February 22nd, shines a spotlight on Heart Valve Disease Awareness Day, emphasizing the significance of the role heart valves play in maintaining our overall health and well-being. What function do the heart valves serve? What are the ways a heart valve can fail? We spoke with Icilma Fergus, MD, board-certified in internal medicine and cardiology and director of c...
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When we think of racism, we often think of overt acts of prejudice and discrimination, but what about subtle microaggressions, bias, and systemic barriers? February is Black History Month, and we are looking at the ways trauma and stress due to racism can impact the Black community physically, mentally, and emotionally. We'll discuss covert racism, explore the psychological impact of working twice as hard to attain what others migh...

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In January, many people choose to refrain from alcohol, or what is known as a “dry January,” after potential excess during the holiday season. But what about those who want to refrain longer or explore their relationship with alcohol? What does it mean to be sober curious, or practice mindful drinking? How would shifting our drinking habits impact our health? We spoke to Amanda E. White, licensed professional counselor and the owne...

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Do you know the difference between a pap smear and a pelvic exam? Do you know where the cervix is located and what it does? Most importantly, what about the connection between human papillomavirus (HPV) and cervical cancer? According to some experts, almost 100% of sexually active people will contract HPV at some point in their lifetime and more than 14,000 women in the US are diagnosed with HPV related invasive cervical cancer ev...

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A 2023 survey by Cleveland Clinic found that 44% of men do not get an annual physical exam. How should men take control of their health? What are the top health concerns for men after the age of 40? What health screenings are essential? And why do we often overlook mental health when having these discussions? Neha Pathak, MD, and John Whyte, MD, discuss the importance of checking blood pressure and cholesterol, maintaining heart he...

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January 4, 2024 22 mins

In the first episode of the new year, Dr. Pathak takes a different approach to traditional New Year's resolutions. Rather than overwhelming you with the pressure of becoming a "new you," this episode encourages listeners to appreciate and love the "you" that exists right now. With a focus on embracing and accepting the current version of ourselves, we explore the transformative power of self-compassion. Guiding us through this top...

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Many of us can relate to feeling triggered or having our buttons pushed in our closest relationships, but what can we do about it? Is there an effective way to identify and communicate healthy boundaries? Can we create and sustain healthier connections even in the midst of conflict? We spoke with Whitney Goodman, LMFT, psychotherapist behind the hugely popular Instagram account @SitWithWhit, author of Toxic Positivity, host of the ...

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December 21, 2023 26 mins

It’s commonly said that we are what we eat. A great deal of research has been done to find a correlation between healthy diets and brain function, but misinformation persists. Figuring out how certain foods impact our physical, mental, and emotional health while also balancing our busy lives can become a frustrating exercise. So, how does food impact the brain exactly? To find out, we spoke to Uma Naidoo, MD, director of Nutritiona...

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We've all heard of seasonal affective disorder, but did you know that it's more than just the winter blues? The cooler temperatures, seasonal changes, and limited daylight hours of the winter months can stir up a certain cozy feeling, but they can also bring a sense of lethargy, persistent sadness, and a loss of interest in activities that once brought joy. So, what exactly is seasonal affective disorder? What are the symptoms? Are...

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What happens when vaccine hesitancy and medical misinformation evolve into an anti-science aggression? While navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, we found ourselves facing daily monumental decisions regarding our health. As the pandemic continued, many of us became well-informed about viral loads, the effectiveness of masks in preventing transmission, and the critical question of whether the vaccine would benefit or potentially harm u...

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Forty years ago, the idea that HIV would shift from a terminal illness to a chronic manageable disease was almost unthinkable. In recent years, another health crisis, COVID-19, much like HIV, was wrought with fear, stigma, and misinformation. In honor of World AIDS Day, we'll discuss key terminology, misconceptions, and advancements in HIV, including U=U undetectable equals untransmittable, the life-changing impact of current treat...

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Have you ever been in a stressful situation where it feels as if you are losing control of your body? Activation of the sympathetic nervous system may cause our chest to tighten, our thoughts to race, and our breathing to become shallow. What are our options in these moments? What can we rely on to bring us back to center when we experience dysregulation? Breathwork, belly breathing, or paced respiration is an inten...

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In 2023 alone, an estimated 64,050 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, accounting for 3% of all cancers in the U.S. and 7% of all cancer deaths. The most concerning thing about pancreatic cancer is that detection often occurs in later stages when it has spread beyond the pancreas. For this reason, pancreatic cancer is often referred to as the "silent killer." To explore the myths and facts of pancreatic cancer, we s...

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Lung cancer is the second most common cancer in the United States. An estimated 238,340 people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2023, and 64% of lung cancers are diagnosed at stage III or IV. With all of these facts, it’s surprising that lung cancer screening, a tool that could save lives, is rarely used. Why is that? Who does that impact the most? And what changes can be made? We spoke with Jeff Yang, MD, a thora...

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Type 1 diabetes is a condition in which your immune system destroys insulin-making cells in your pancreas. Typically diagnosed in childhood or adolescence, type 1 diabetes is not just a medical condition; it's a story of resilience and adaptability, requiring a lifelong commitment to managing one's health.

In today's episode, we'll sort through the myths and learn the facts of type 1 diabetes—examining the...

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Sexual health is crucial to our well-being. Despite its impact on our lives, it’s still not something we commonly discuss with our doctors. This is particularly true for cancer survivors, both during treatment and in the post-treatment phase. What are some of the challenges that cancer survivors have when it comes to sexual wellness? How do the mental, physical, emotional, and financial burdens of cancer impact connection and inti...

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There are many misconceptions about what people experience following a breast cancer diagnosis. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, we decided to look at breast cancer through the eyes of a survivor. We spoke with Bossi, a two-time breast cancer survivor, founder of House of Bossi, and singer/songwriter of the 2022 EP titled Run with Lions, inspired by her battles with cancer. Bossi highlights the often unseen experience of ...

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