If Your Flu is Really Bad, Go to Duke or UNC Hospitals

The flu season is here, and people are dying.

Last week in North Carolina, 11 people died from the flu, bringing the seasonal total to 33. (Source: NC DHHS.) Nationally, 39 children have died so far this season. (Source CDC.)

From Heart Health, Episode 153:

Dr. Frank Wefald: The flu report is here.  There are two things I want to talk about.  Number one, influenza A vs. influenza B.  We usually worry about influenza A, the H1N1, that’s the really bad one, while it’s covered by the flu vaccine.  But they usually only hit one influenza B.  OK.  They are very similar viruses.  They just have different proteins on the outside that we can use to target the immune system. 

Anyway, influenza B/Victoria, that’s a big one this year. 

And it’s surprising and usually influenza B is not as bad for you as influenza A.  You are going to see all these articles about young, beautiful women and young beautiful men dying of influenza B.  Now, it’s rare.  If you don’t have your flu shot it’s going to be riskier. 

There is a very, very bad story.  16-year-old Kalee Roberts.  She was doing well.  She hadn’t had her flu shot.  She started to feel achy with a little fever.  She sort of toughed it out for three days. 

She finally couldn’t breathe.  She was coughing.  She went to the Emergency Room, lungs filled with fluid because of the body’s hyper-reaction with inflammation against the flu virus. 

Kaylee Roberts.

She died a few days after showing symptoms. The full story of Kalee Roberts is at CNN. Photo credit: CNN.

That’s the problem with the flu virus.  It will trigger our immune system to over react and the lungs fill up with fluid.  There have been several patients who have been told, their families have been told that there is nothing we can do.  The lungs aren’t working. 

One of the things that I want to make clear is that there is always in that situation another chance and that’s called ECMO, extracorporeal oxygen membrane.  It’s like a heart/lung bypass machine.  You take the blood out of the body, you put it through the bypass machine, it gets oxygenated and put it back in.

The hospitals in our area with ECMO are Duke and UNC.

Flu Symptoms from the Centers for Disease Control:

  • A fever of 100.4F/38C degrees or higher or feeling feverish (not everyone with the flu has a fever)
  • A cough and/or sore throat
  • A runny or stuffy nose
  • Headaches and/or body aches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea (most common in children) Source: CDC.gov/flu

Dave Alexander: So, if you have a really bad flu, knock on those emergency room doors.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Or if you are in a hospital where they tell you that the lungs are so bad your daughter is going to die, ask them, can I get to the facility with ECMO? 

Hormone Therapy for Weight Loss?

In episode 153 of Heart Health Radio we welcomed brand new Friend of the Show Denny Owens, the Executive Director of InShape Medical.

He’s not a medical doctor, but works with a physician and physician assistant and nurses at InShape Medical to help folks lose weight and feel better.

From the show:

Dennis Owens: So, at In Shape Medical we do a lot of hormone balancing when people reach middle age and their hormones get out of balance and starts causing all kinds of symptoms that they can get relief from.  That’s a large thing that we do.  We also do a lot of nutritional counseling and medical weight loss.  We do some aesthetics, but that’s really not the focus of the clinic.  It’s really about trying to get people, especially as they are aging feel a better state of health and be proactive about their health through lifestyle changes and some interventions. 

Denny Owens is in the center of this staff picture.

Dave Alexander: I mean, if somebody came to you and said, you know, I go to a regular doctor. I have an endocrinologist.  I’m a diabetic and I need to lose weight and change my life.  Are you a good place to go?

Dennis Owens: Yeah, we help a lot of people in those situations.  We absolutely do.  Metabolic syndrome, I mean it’s just rampant in our society because of the lifestyle choices that people make.  So, we help people turn around their health in a lot of different ways.  A lot of it’s nutrition based but there are other things as well.  Like I said, hormone balancing and other things.

Dave Alexander: So, if I wanted to go on a diet, I would go to you?

Dennis Owens: Yes, absolutely.  If you want to lose weight quickly and safely but also make lifestyle changes there is a lot of good research that says quick weight loss is good if it’s coupled with coaching to get lifestyle changes for the long term.  Because otherwise you’re probably going to gain that weight back pretty quickly.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Yeah, there’s something about the metabolism that shrinks your belly fat because you are getting a tire…that’s what they call it, a spare tire…I had about four spare tires, you know. You slim down and your muscle strength gets better. Your brain starts to work better. I remember where my keys were.

Dr. Franklin wefald

Dr. Frank Wefald: I was just feeling terrible about five years ago and I thought it was physician burnout. But I finally wised up and went to a doctor and she is excellent.  She got my testosterone level and I should have been what, about 400 for my age, 450.  It was 135! 

It was terrible.  Well then, we figured out it was because of all the procedures that I did, the cardiac procedures where you have to wear lead because you’re blasting everybody with fluoroscopy which is radiation. I started getting replacement.  Tell us about your story and how you got replacement and how you are doing. 

Dennis Owens: Yeah, I’ve had multiple health challenges over the years and I have overcome all of them through different modalities.  In the beginning, it was about eight years ago, I was suffering all kinds of symptoms.  Come to find out, I had, what was driving that was my very low testosterone.  Mine wasn’t much higher than yours.  Mine was 152.

The entire discussion is on Heart Health Radio from 1/18/2020, and all the shows are here.

We’re on Apple Podcasts and at WPTF podcasts, but we’re also on WPTF AM-680 every Saturday at noon. Dr Wefald is glad to point you in the direction of good questions to ask your doctor.

Always see your doctor before changing your medical routine. Don’t stop taking medicines based on advice you might hear, or silly articles on the internet.

You Do Not Need a Daily Vitamin

Unless your doctor says so.

Episode 152 of Heart Health Radio included a great conversation with Dr. Stephen Barrett of Quackwatch. His websites examine medical; fraud, bad medical advice and nutritional claims.

Dr. Barrett is a retired psychiatrist and has co-authored a book on vitamin quackery. The full text of the book is here.

From the show:

Dr. Stephen Barrett: Generally speaking, most of them are not useful. There are some people who might need to take extra folic acid or might need to take B12. Some people might need to take calcium. But when it comes to the combination products, not a lot of rational use.

Dave Alexander: Even the ones that are advertised with the steely, silver-haired guy who is wind surfing and he’s in his 70s but he looks so good. Shouldn’t I be taking as I get older some sort of supplemental vitamin?

Dr. Stephen Barrett: Well, not simply because you’re getting older. It’s actually not even the right question to ask.

Dave Alexander: OK.

Dr. Stephen Barrett: The question should start with; do I have an adequate diet. If you have an adequate diet then you’re not going to need supplements, or at least most people won’t. So, you should start with an adequate diet which means you write down what you eat for three, four, seven days and figure out whether there is anything missing. If you don’t know how do to it yourself, have a dietician do it. It’s only a one-time thing.

Dr. Frank Wefald: I think that’s a really good point.

Dr. Stephen Barrett: There is a lot more to diet and nutrition than simply vitamins.

Dr. Frank Wefald: I think that’s a really good point.

Dr. Stephen Barrett: If you want to take a multivitamin for insurance, you don’t need to take it every day because there is just about nobody that needs that much. It’s more than most people need. I eat a very low-fat diet and I don’t have…I’m concerned about trace minerals. I take one multivitamin a week just to make sure I have enough trace minerals.

Dr. Frank Wefald: I think that’s a smart thing….go ahead.

Dr. Stephen Barrett: The studies of vitamins in controlled scientific studies with only one exception have found that they don’t do much good. Just within the past month a new article came out, really shocking, saying that they found in patients with breast cancer taking some of the common antioxidant pills actually led to a worse outcome.

Dr. Frank Wefald: That’s funny. That was one of our articles that we were going to discuss today.

Here’s link to one article describing the study. — Dave

Dave Alexander: That’s on the list of our things to talk about today.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Well, I’m glad you brought it up. One thing I do want to mention, some vitamins are necessary. Vitamin B12 is necessary in people who are B12 deficient.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Interestingly I started to measure that and it’s turned out that there are more people than you think are vitamin B12 deficient. I think it’s important to ask your physician, do you need vitamins? There is vitamin D deficiency and that’s controversial. Some people don’t think you even need to treat that. Then there is a condition and Dr. Barrett mentioned folic acid, a specific cardiac condition called homocysteinemia. You have too much homocysteine, which is an amino acid. Folic acid brings it down and homocysteine is associated with a greater tendency to clot. But the point is there is that taking all these vitamins unless you have a vitamin deficiency is really not going to help you.

From Vitamin Pushers:

There are only two situations in which the use of vitamins in excess of the RDAs has proven value. {RDA is the recommended daily allowance.}

The first is for treatment of medically diagnosed deficiency states-conditions that are rare except among alcoholics, persons
with intestinal absorption defects, and the poor, especially those who are pregnant or elderly.

The other use is in the treatment of certain conditions for which large doses of vitamins are used as drugs-with full recognition of the risks involved.

Consult your doctor about supplemental vitamins, eat a decent diet and listen to Heart Health Radio Saturdays at noon on WPTF and on WPTF.com.

Here is the direct link to all the episodes.

Episode 151: The SAD Lamp

Can a lamp help you beat the winter blues?

In the latest Heart Health Radio, Dr. Franklin Wefald talks about depression and seasonal affective disorder.

Dave Alexander: Are people getting sick more during this period of time?

Dr. Frank Wefald: Yeah, and I think a lot of it has to do with the stress.

And then there’s one big thing I think people need to understand, especially lately. You know, we have had no sunny days until the last couple of days and I noticed that I was just really getting down. It’s called seasonal affective disorder.

Now some people get it not just because it’s rainy and cloudy but we have a smaller amount of sunshine because of the way the season is. You know, in the summer you get 14 or 16 hours of daylight and now we’re getting 8 or 9 maybe. And so, the circadian..that’s what it’s called, circadian rhythms. Believe it or not, the amount of sun that hits our face affects the neurotransmitters in our brains. And so, for some people having less sunlight can really bring on depression.

New York Magazine has an article about SAD lamps here.

Now thankfully there is something I use. It’s very inexpensive. You can get it on Amazon for 30 bucks and it’s called a full spectrum SAD lamp. SAD, it’s really sad, but Seasonal Affective Disorder, S-A-D, sad. You sit in front of this thing for 20 minutes and it perks you up.

It brings up your neurotransmitters, the happy ones, the serotonins and the norepinephrines and the dopamine. It works for a lot of people. It doesn’t work for everybody. It perked me up the last week. I mean, I came into the office on Monday and said, “I don’t want to do this, I’m just down”. So, the SAD lamp came from Amazon and I put it up next to my computer. I turned it on full blast.

It doesn’t give you sunburn. It’s not a UV lamp, it’s what they call a full spectrum lamp. So, you know the rainbow having all those different colors, you know from purple to red, yellow, green and blue? So that full spectrum hits your face. It’s like sunlight except without the sunburn. I feel like this warmth all over my face. I really felt a difference that afternoon. Now, whether it’s psychological or not, it doesn’t matter. You know if it’s a placebo effect, it doesn’t matter, I was happy.

SAD therapy light on a stand
Image credit: Hobbr. An article on SAD lights is here.

Dave Alexander: I can tell you, not that this is seasonal affective disorder, but there is this sort of … “I’m driving to work in the dark and I’m coming home in the dark disorder. Or I leave work and the sun is out but then it goes down while I’m driving home.”

Dr. Frank Wefald: So, take this seriously. If you’re down and you’re feeling blue. If it’s really serious please see your doctor right away.

Dave Alexander: Is it really called SAD, seasonal affective disorder?

Dr. Frank Wefald: Yeah, SAD. What you need to do on Amazon is search SAD lamp, S-A-D lamp. They have a bunch. Don’t think you have to buy the most expensive one. They all work and it depends on how big they are. Now I bought one that has four different levels of intensity because I like to dial it down a little bit and dial it up a little bit. But I really endorse them. I’m not endorsing one single brand but if you’re really down, if you’re really depressed don’t just rely on the SAD lamp. Go see your doctor because he or she may diagnose you with clinical depression and you may need extra help.

We also talked about getting the right amount of sleep, former Vice-President Joe Biden’s health and childhood obesity.

Find Heart Health Radio at Apple Podcasts, WPTF.com or listen to the latest episodes by clicking here. .

Duke Surgeons Perform a Unique Heart Transplant

On Episode 151 of Heart Health Radio, Dr. Franklin Wefald explains why doctors implanted a heart which had stopped beating.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Full disclosure. I trained in Cardiology at Duke. I know these guys. Some of them are retired. I’m old. But it’s a wonderful place. It’s a place where magic still happens. I sent some people there who I never expected to survive and they are doing great 20 years later.

Duke Surgeons Photo Credit: SHAWN ROCCO DUKE HEALTH
Click here for a link to the News and Observer Article

Dr. Frank Wefald: The biggest problem with heart transplants, we don’t have enough donors. Now we talked before on the show how we can use now the donors who…donor hearts who were drug addicts dying of overdoses who had hepatitis-C. Some doctor said, I’m taking the heart myself. He was a heart transplant surgeon and he needed a heart transplant. They thought he was crazy. They gave him the heart. He got hepatitis C but low and behold, we now have medicines that cure hepatitis C. So that’s what you do. It sounds crazy, but it works. You know, you take the pills, you get a new heart and you cure hepatitis C.

Now another thing that has changed because of Duke and the bravery and the sense of pushing into a new frontier. They are using hearts that have stopped. Now before they would say they would take a heart from somebody who is brain dead that the heart had never stopped. Well, they have incredible techniques now to preserve hearts. So, if someone’s heart has stopped and they get it going again they know now that it’s not necessarily a “bad heart”.

So, there were Type A hearts. The Type A hearts were from young individuals who were healthy, never had a sign of a heart problem who had brain death and the heart never stopped. Then there were Type B hearts and those maybe had a little cholesterol buildup from older people. They would sometimes give those to very old people who needed a heart transplant.

Well now they have elevated certain hearts that were actually stopped and required CPR but looked good and they are transplanting them. I think that’s a wonderful thing. Duke is breaking a mold and I think that we should commend them. I think this is going to open up another era where we are going to see more of the people who were dying, awaiting a heart transplant who are going to get them.

Dave Alexander: Am I wrong to interpret this as they were given a heart…?

Dr. Frank Wefald: A heart that had stopped. That had died.

Dave Alexander: This is Frankenstein.

Dr. Frank Wefald: No, because the heart never deteriorated.

Dave Alexander: OK.

Dr. Frank Wefald: When we talk about died, we’re talking about minutes here. You know.

Dave Alexander: I’m good with that.

Dr. Frank Wefald: They wouldn’t use them even if they had to do CPR for 5 or 6 minutes because they were afraid…and there was no evidence…but it was “common sense” that the heart wouldn’t be any good any more.

Dave Alexander: Sure.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Well, think about it. How many people get CPR and live for a long time? A lot.

Dave Alexander: Right. So, the heart is good?

Dr. Frank Wefald: The heart is good. It was assumed to be bad.

Also on Episode 151, Dr. Wefald discusses Vascepa, a purified Omega-3 and we talk about Dave’s uncle…who had his body frozen so that he could be warmed up once they have a cure for what killed him.

For the podcast click here.

Do You Need a Pacemaker?

On Heart Health Radio Episode 150, Bill called up to ask about pacemakers. Dr. Franklin Wefald gives some background. He has put in thousands of pacemakers. Listen to the show here. Dr. Wefald also tells a story on air of one of the few times he’s made a critical error putting in a pacemaker, and what he told the patient and the family.

Bill: Two quick questions for you. One, what are the general coronary symptoms that indicate a potential need for a pacemaker? Two, how long on average does a pacemaker, the equipment itself, last before it has to be replaced?

My staff goes running in because I’m telling him to COUGH! Sometimes a cough will bring it back. I hit him in the chest. Sometimes that will bring them back.

Dr. Franlin Wefald

Dr. Frank Wefald: Good questions. So, as I understand it you want to know what are the symptoms that indicate you may need a pacemaker. Is that right?

Bill: Yes.

Dr. Frank Wefald: OK, there are a lot of them. And sometimes you’re asymptomatic. You don’t feel anything. Most of the times it’s dizziness or just flat out passing out.

Photo Credit: Medline Plus

Dr. Wefald:Let me to give you an example. The last guy who needed pacemaker walked into my office with a big stitch wound on his head. I said, what happened? He said, I fell down and hit my head. Well, I always like to hear a story. And so, his story was that he was having a big, big urination which he had held off having, got up, hit the ground and passed out. So, I went over and hooked him up to the EKG machine, pushed on his neck and his heart stopped for 8, 9 or 10 seconds.

My staff goes running in because I’m telling him to COUGH! Sometimes a cough will bring it back. I hit him in the chest. Sometimes that will bring them back. [By the way, the patient is just fine now — Dave.].

You can have either rapid heartbeats followed by dizzy spells or you think you’re going to pass out. A pacemaker will not control your rapid heartbeat most of the time. There are certain pacemakers who will shock your heart when the top part is beating fast in A-fib. That’s rare.

But the pacemaker is there to prevent it from slowing down too much. So, what happens? You can have blockages of the electricity going to the bottom of the heart. You may not even feeling it but you may have an EKG that puts you at risk so the doctor will do a monitor for a couple of days, seven days, and pick up that intermittently that your heart is not passing the electricity through the top part to the bottom part. Then you need a pacemaker to prevent the passing out.

So, the most important thing if you’re dizzy or having episodes where you feel like you’re going to pass out, go to your doctor because they can diagnose that and then a pacemaker will actually cure that. Now, how long do they last? Unbelievable!

When I first started 30 years ago they lasted two or three years and then you had to get a new device. The device is not just a battery. It’s not just a computer. They don’t come in two parts. It’s one size fits all, one device that has the battery and the computer. Now they are lasting twelve to fourteen years. That’s not only because the battery works better. It’s because the wires…I will call them wires, they’re not sharp they are leads and they’re soft as spaghetti…they’re better at picking up when the pacemaker needs to work and they are also better at transmitting the electricity in short bursts and in low voltages to the heart muscle.

Instead of lasting three or four years when I first started, they’re lasting twelve to fourteen years. Who knows, the next ones may last twenty years.

Always consult your doctor about changing your health regimen or diet. Don’t install a pacemaker yourself. Always see a surgeon. For medical information every week, listen to Heart Health Radio on Newsradio-680 WPTF Saturdays an noon, or on Apple Podcasts, or at WPTF.com. — Dave Alexander

Please feel free to comment here, or call the Heart Health Radio during the show at (919) 860-9783.

Episode 150: North Carolina Children’s Hospital’s Troubles

If a hospital has a problem, should they let patients know?

This was in the New York Times:

The parents of a 3-year-old who died after heart surgery at North Carolina Children’s Hospital in 2016 are suing the institution, saying it failed to disclose internal concerns about the quality of its care.

Dr. Franklin Wefald suggests that the hospital should have been honest with their patients in 2016, when it was having a high rate of complications. He also suggests there are good reasons for pausing a program, solving the deficiencies and only then resuming surgeries.

In 2016, Skylar Jones underwent what was considered a relatively low-risk procedure to repair a heart defect. Soon after leaving the operating room, the girl suffered complications that led to her death two months later at the state-owned hospital, which is affiliated with the University of North Carolina.

They told the family that we have a heart surgery program at a world class hospital for pediatric patients and he died.  And so, this brings on a very special issue in that systemic problems in hospitals pose a risk for patients and they should be warned— Dr. Franklin Wefald

This is discussed in the first few minutes of Heart Health Radio, which is available on the podcast at Apple Podcasts and at WPTF.com.

At about 16 minutes into the show, Dr. Wefald slams doctors who diagnose patients without seeing them. This is about another story concerning the president’s mental state. We discuss former Vice President Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. All three of these people had tough weeks, with flashes of anger.

Does that mean that doctors can diagnose them as mentally unfit?

What is the “No-No Diet?”

And How Can Just About Anybody Lose Weight?

Dr. Franlin Wefald didn’t invent the “No-no Diet” but he did name it. Based upon years of helping people manage diabetes, heart conditions and obesity, Wefald figures if you can cut down on a short list of foods, you’ll be healthier and lose weight. But it’s still okay to occasionally cheat.

From Heart Health Radio, Episode 143:

Dave Alexander: So, the question is, what should I eat this week and what should I stay away from? You’ve titled your advice the “No-No Diet” because there is a series of things I should stay away from.
What are they?

Dr. Frank Wefald: White flour products, sugar products, white potato products and white rice.

So, eat the egg and the bacon but throw away the biscuit.
Dr. Wefald on the left, Dave Alexander on the right.

Dr. Wefald: What I’m trying to say is our diets are composed of such high amounts now of these products and so what they do is they have broken down these…white flour is just a series of sugar molecules linked together. You know what high fructose corn syrup is?

Quick Ideas

  • Cut back on pasta, bread, rice and potatoes.
  • Avoid sugary drinks or sweet treats.
  • Eat meat but stay away from very salty food if you have high blood pressure
  • Steak is very good for you. So are eggs.
  • Remember: Fat does not make you fat.
  • The “No-No” Diet is fine for Type 2 diabetics, and it will help control blood sugars.
  • Always talk to your doctor about any diets and this is especially true if you have Type 1 diabetes.

Dave Alexander: Sugar.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Well yeah, but where do they get it? They take it from corn. It’s not sweet corn, it’s just corn. They purify these goos of long chains of sugar that come from the corn. They break it down enzymatically. They have these little proteins that break it down into simple fructose and sucrose. That’s why it’s sweet but it’s not naturally sweet. It’s broken down by enzymes.

So, the same thing happens in your body. You take white flour and the bacteria in your body breaks it down into a simple sugar. That simple sugar is used to power the energy in your brain and other parts of your body but what’s left over is stored as fat so that when there’s a famine you will have fat stores that can supply your body with energy.

…it’s hard to imagine that if you are eating a huge pot of pasta you’re eating 26 teaspoons of sugar…

Dr. Franklin Wefald

Eat the Egg but Throw Away the Biscuit

Dr. Frank Wefald: What I do with the No-No Diet is make it simple. Instead of saying “you need to cut back on your intake of simple carbohydrates.” I name them. So, biscuits. In America, in the
south, everybody loves a breakfast biscuit.

So, eat the egg and the bacon but throw away the biscuit. The problem is the biscuit is so good. The French fry, oh my gosh, French fries are ubiquitous. Cut back, it’s a no-no. Anything, Pringles, I say that because I love Pringles. In the afternoon at 4:00 I will grab a mouth full and then I’m powered up and I can go again. That’s your sugar high that comes from a Pringle.

I have sugar equivalents so a piece of bread is 5 teaspoons of pure sugar, equivalent to your body. So, if your French, part of the No-No Diet would be the baguettes, the croissant. So, I try to make it simple. I name the foods, white bread, white bread buns. Now they say “what should I eat”, whole grain bread. Whole grain bread is wonderful. Those little bits in there, that means it’s got the husk and the husk is good for you, it’s fiber, it prevents being broken down into simple sugars.

Dave Alexander: But you want me to probably look at the ingredients to make sure it’s just not white bread with a little bit of brown in there and covered with nuts.

Dr. Frank Wefald: Like granola. Granola is horrible. Why? It’s made of molasses and honey. That’s sugar. Pasta is a big one. And I’m telling ya, when I say white bread you should be a no-no on and I say pasta you should be a no-no on, the look of abject depression comes on these patient’s faces because they love bread and white bread in particular and they love pasta.

Now, am I saying “no-no” so that you’re never going to do it? Well if you follow this plan you’re going to lose weight fast and your cholesterol is going to come down fast and your sugars are going to be cured.

Now the interesting thing is they say “what’s a diabetic diet”?

The No-No Diet is a diabetic diet because diabetics, and I’m talking about Type 2 diabetics and not Type 1’s who have no insulin. That’s a whole other topic. Those are the kids and young adults that need insulin. But if you have Type 2 diabetes, you should be on the No-No Diet. The reason is because your insulin is not efficient, it’s not produced in your body enough and it’s not working well enough.

Good Carbs vs. Bad Carbs

From Heart Health Radio, Episode 49:

What are good carbs? Broccoli, cauliflower, those are what we call complex carbohydrates. They produce, when they are digested you get fiber. You get vitamins and nutrients. The ingredients or what makes up a cauliflower is not broken down into a simple sugar.

So, what are the bad carbs? The bad carbs are products made out of white flour, made out of sugar, made out of white potatoes and white rice. The reason is that when they get into your system your digestive tract, the bacteria and your own enzymes break these compounds down into a sugar molecule.

So, a slice of white bread is equivalent to eating 5 teaspoons of sugar. Now it’s not that hard to imagine that eating all that sugar would be bad for you but it’s hard to imagine that if you are eating a huge pot of pasta you’re eating 26 teaspoons of sugar and that’s what you’re doing.

A Machine Which Detects 13 Types of Cancer!

From a single drop of blood. This is the Holy Grail of diagnosing cancer. The key to early detection.

Details are here, and we discuss this on Heart Health Radio here.

Photocredit: Toshiba

Toshiba says its device tests for 13 cancer types with 99% accuracy from a single drop of blood (Japan Times)

Toshiba Corp. has developed technology to detect 13 types of cancer from a single drop of blood with 99 percent accuracy, the company announced Monday.

Toshiba developed the diagnosis method together with the National Cancer Center Research Institute and Tokyo Medical University, and hopes to commercialize it in “several years” after starting a trial next year.

The method could be used to treat cancer in its early stage, it said.

Episode 149: 70% of Blood Available for Transfusion Contains Xanax

…and lots of coffee, too.

Story here. Seventy percent of people don’t really take Xanax, so why is so much blood tainted? Dr. Franklin Wefald suggests a reason for this.

You might be someday getting two flu shots a year. Dr. Wefald is asking his doctor about it. Should you?

Marc called about his cardiac ablation in segment one, and late in the show, Michelle called about a teen who is fit, but has high cholesterol. Is a vegan diet healthy?

We talk about the scientific basis for the “No-No” Diet. Like the Atkins Diet, it limits carbohydrates and encourages eating fats. Fat doesn’t make you fat. Sugars, white flour, potatoes, bread, white rice and pasta are to blame for weight gain in most people. Cut them all out (or limit them) and eat a burger without the bun, and you will be healthier.

Speaking of buns…

In Fake News, an Instagram star promotes sunning Where the sun doesnt shine.” Find the story here…

WARNING: Not safe for work! Dr. Wefald says don’t tan your privates and these doctors agree.

Doctor Urges People Not To Attempt Viral 'Butt Sunning' Trick
All the other pictures at the link are really not safe for wor. No. Really. Don’t click.

Update: Josh Brolin Tried “Perineum Sunning” and It Completely Ruined His Day. Details here.

A closeup of Josh Brolin's face on the red carpet at the Avengers: Endgame premiere.

Find Episode 149 here, and a complete list of programs here.

Tune in Heart Health Radio LIVE at noon on 680-WPTF and you can “listen live” outside central North Carolina at WPTF.com.