The COVID-19 pandemic helped fentanyl spread across the United States and exacerbated the opioid epidemic

For the past 20 years, I have been engaged in efforts to end the opioid epidemic, as a public health official, researcher and clinician. And for each and every one of those years, I have looked at the fact that the number of deaths due to drug overdoses has set a new record high. But … Read more

Remembering incorrectly can actually be a sign that your memory is functioning optimally

When I was asked the other day about a bakery near my home, I replied that I had recently eaten its mouth-watering chocolate cakes. My wife corrected me and noticed that the cookies I ate were actually oatmeal raisins. Why did I make this memory error? Is this an early sign of impending dementia? Should … Read more

‘Off-label’ use is common in medicine, but it is not allowed for COVID-19 vaccines

Children aged 5 to 11 years can now be vaccinated against COVID-19 under the Food and Drug Administration’s emergency use permit of Pfizer Bio-NTech vaccine for this age group and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approval in early November 2021. Some parents remain hesitant to vaccinate their children. But many around the country report … Read more

Is food addictive? The high content of fats and refined carbohydrates activates the brain’s reward system

Every year millions of Americans try to cut down on ultra-processed foods Industrial formulations that are typically high in added fat, refined carbohydrates or both. Think cookies, pastries, potato chips and pizza. For many, the desire to change what they eat is triggered by concerns about potentially life-threatening health conditions, such as diabetes and heart … Read more