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Laughing through the pain: ‘SNL’ alum Hammond to speak on mental health

Photo provided by William Morris Endeavor EntertainmentDarrell Hammond, the longest-running cast member on Saturday Night Live, will appear at the Mental Health Association of Greater Baton Rouge's 60th Anniversary Celebration.

Behind all the jokes that made Darrell Hammond a star was the suffering caused by an abusive childhood. Hammond, 59, a stand-up comedian and writer and the longest-tenured cast member on “Saturday Night Live,” lived with drug and alcohol addictions and the self abuse of cutting. He believes telling his story may help others… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Oct. 27, 2014

Is inflammatory breast cancer different than other types of breast cancer? Inflammatory breast cancer is a rare but very aggressive type of breast cancer in which the cancer cells block the lymph vessels in the skin of the breast. Unlike other breast cancers, there is rarely a distinct lump in… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Oct. 27, 2014

Why is respite care an important plan of action in caring for someone with Alzheimer’s? Caring for someone with Alzheimer’s can be extremely stressful. Respite care provides a needed a break from the day-to-day responsibilities and can restore the caregiver’s energy and support a balanced daily life. Additionally, respite care can delay admission… Continue reading →

Flip your food: Cooking show gives health options to local favorites

Photo provided by Triple 7 Public Relations -- Chef Jeff Henderson shoots a segment of 'Flip My Food' in New Orleans recently while Heather Yowler watches.

Keep it simple, Jeff Henderson says. Embarking on his fourth television cooking series, the Las Vegas chef says “Flip My Food” is all about taking an original dish and making it a little healthier. And that’s possible even with the calorie-rich cuisine for which Louisiana is famous. The syndicated show, which travels to a different… Continue reading →

La. entrepreneur hopes ‘Iconic’ builds new genre

Photo provided by Be Well Nutrition Inc.Billy Bosch, a Baton Rouge native, markets the

A new protein drink now on the shelves in New Orleans could help establish an entirely new genre of beverage. The Louisiana-born co-founder of the Iconic healthy “lifestyle beverage” promotes his product as a “snack drink.” “It’s a whole new realm of drink, and one that we think is on the rise,” said Billy… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Oct. 20, 2014

Are there any known benefits to yoga for cancer survivors? There are ongoing studies exploring the benefits of yoga for cancer patients. MD Anderson recently released results that demonstrated yoga regulated stress hormones in breast cancer patients undergoing radiation. Those practicing yoga also reported less fatigue and better general health after their… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Oct. 20, 2014

I am worried about my mom who has been caring for my dad who has Alzheimer’s for a couple of years. What are some signs of caregiver stress or burnout? If you pointed out to your mom that you feel she is overwhelmingly stressed or suffering from caregiver burnout, she would most likely deny it, which… Continue reading →

Cyclocross: Burgeoning bicycle sport as much about fun culture as it is racing

Photo provided by Rhea Aldridge --A cyclocross racer navigates a loose dirt pile during a race. Man-made and natural obstacles are a major part of cyclocross racing.

Kimberly Clements was showing off purple bruises on her biceps and legs, earned in a weekend of bike racing. “I fell down a hill really hard,” she said, laughing about the crash with her training partners. It was just a part of cyclocross, a growing form of bicycle racing on short, fast courses… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Oct. 13, 2014

How likely is a man to get breast cancer? Breast cancer in men is rare, making up less than 1 percent of cases. Although men have less breast tissue than women, cancer can still occur in the breast cells. Breast cancer in men is more commonly seen in those ages… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Oct. 13, 2014

My partner, who is 65, has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Do most agencies support LGBT families? In January 2011, the first Baby Boomers turned 65. The vast expansion of this aging population — the 78 million Americans born between 1946 and 1964 — will put tremendous, unaffordable strains on government programs, such as Medicare and… Continue reading →

Comfort food for muscles: Trio of remedies will help with workout recovery

Advocate staff photo by RICHARD ALAN HANNONBasic Chicken Noodle Soup is an easy-to-make choice for those just learning to cook. -- Chicken Noodle Soup for

Forget the gel packets, technologically advanced sports drinks and special powders. All the nutrition you need for a tough workout may already be in your kitchen. A steaming bowl of chicken noodle soup could be the best preparation for exercise, and pickle juice or chocolate milk may help your body recover afterward, according to Neil… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Oct. 6, 2014

What is a breast cancer screening? The two most common types of breast cancer screenings are clinical breast exams (CBE) and mammograms. Other tests, such as MRI, might be used in screening high-risk individuals, but this is not common. CBE’s are generally performed on women of all ages every one to three years… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Oct. 6, 2014

What is frontotemporal dementia? Frontotemporal dementia, sometimes called Pick’s disease or FTD (frontotemporal degneration), is a rare form of dementia that causes death of brain cells in the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain. This type of dementia significantly changes an individual’s personality, before memory and speech problems. FTD differs from other… Continue reading →

Shake the Salt Habit

Photo provided by American Heart Association  --  Cheesecake Dainties feature won ton wrappers sprinkled with crushed graham cracker to create minibaskets for the cheesecake-style filling

Put down that salt shaker and check the amount of sodium in the prepared foods you buy. That’s the message the American Heart Association is promoting during National No Salt Week, which begins Friday and runs through Oct. 10. “The goal for No Salt Week is to ask people to remove the salt shakers from… Continue reading →

N.O. karate standouts say skills strengthen family, work life

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- Sharon Brown, left, and Raymunda Semana spar at Tulane University's Reily Center in New Orleans, La. Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014. The two will be part of the USA team for the Shoto World Cup Karate Championship Tournament in October.

You might say these parents are just like everyone else. They put on their pants one leg at a time. But when they tie a black belt around their waists, they become parents with, ahem, super powers. Dimitri Papadopoulos, Sharon Brown, Devin Fadaol and Raymunda Semana are karatekas, or practitioners of karate. They are… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Sept. 29, 2014

How does HPV relate to cancer? Human Papillomavirus is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. While there are many different strains of HPV, according to the National Cancer Institute, only 16 are considered high-risk and account for approximately 5 percent of all cancers worldwide. Virtually all cases of cervical cancer are caused… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Sept. 29, 2014

Is there a link between getting concussions and developing Alzheimer’s? A concussion is traumatic brain injury that changes the way your brain functions. When the skull is jolted or impacted by a hard surface, the brain shifts, slamming against the skull, causing damage and swelling to the brain. If treated correctly, the brain will heal. If… Continue reading →

Is DNA key to your diet?: New weight-loss concept tests DNA to tailor diet to metabolism

With its well-earned reputation for culinary — and other — excess, New Orleans seems an unlikely base for a cutting-edge weight-loss business. “Or,” said GenoVive founder Vic Castellon, “maybe that makes it the perfect place.” Or, maybe it doesn’t matter. Ever heard that some people stay trim because of good genes? Castellon’s company puts a… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Sept. 22, 2014

What can you tell me about Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma? Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is one of a group of cancers called lymphomas. Lymphoma is a general term for cancers that develop in the lymphatic system. Non-Hodgkin’s disease accounts for the majority of lymphomas and is subdivided into about 60 other subtypes. The two major subtypes of non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Sept. 22, 2014

What can I expect as my mom now experiences the later stages of Alzheimer’s? The later stage of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia can be very distressing for you and your family, and a time you should enlist support from others, complete advance directives and make decisions on hospice and palliative care. Because each individual… Continue reading →

An APP a day ...keeps the doctor at bay

Photo provided by The O-Bar uses technology to help patients navigate medical issues.

The automatic doors made a whooshing sound as Gloria Bienemy stepped into the health clinic for her appointment. But instead of seeing a nurse, Bienemy met with technology specialist Braden Lemon at a sleek counter topped with glossy iPads and began reviewing health-focused computer apps. The futuristic scene is called the OBar. A nod… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Sept. 15, 2014

What is Hodgkin’s lymphoma? Hodgkin’s lymphoma, also known as Hodgkin’s disease, is one of a group of cancers called lymphomas. Lymphoma is a general term for cancers that develop in the lymphatic system. Hodgkin’s disease accounts for around 11 to 12 percent of lymphomas and is the most curable type of lymphoma. Other cancers… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Sept. 15, 2014

My friend’s dad has developed alcohol-related dementia that is caused by Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. Can you tell me about this syndrome? Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome is a neurological disorder that is typically associated with chronic alcoholism, yet could also be associated with malnutrition, a B vitamin deficiency or other nutritional deficiencies. The syndrome is often under-reported and… Continue reading →

Weight change, life change: John Schneider credits fitness for success, challenges fans

Advocate file photo-- John Schneider, right, first rose to fame in the early 1980s as Bo Duke in the television series 'The Dukes of Hazzard.' He says getting in shape got him the role. With him are costars Tom Wopat and Catherine Bach.

Actor John Schneider is waving a healthy carrot in front of his fans. The star of OWN’s “The Haves and the Have Nots” has offered up a 90-day fitness challenge to Facebook followers of the series. The winner will be flown to Atlanta, where the Tyler Perry-helmed show is shot, for dinner with Schneider and others in… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Sept. 8, 2014

What is gynecologic cancer? Gynecologic or gynecological cancer is actually a group of several different cancers. According to the National Cancer Institute, a gynecological cancer is any cancer of the female reproductive tract. Gynecological cancers include: cervical cancer, endometrial cancer, fallopian tube cancer, gestational trophoblastic tumor, ovarian epithelial cancer, ovarian germ cell tumor, ovarian… Continue reading →

Alzheimer’s Q&A, Sept. 8, 2014

Does vitamin E assist in slowing down cognitive decline? No treatment will delay, prevent or cure Alzheimer’s disease. Vitamin E is an antioxidant. Antioxidants may protect brain cells and other body tissues from certain kinds of chemical wear and tear. In the January issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, researchers announced results… Continue reading →

Better meals keep your kids healthier, more alert

Your child’s lunch box should be filled with the fuel he or she needs to pay attention and play hard. But some traditional lunches might not meet the nutrition a young scholar requires, says Angelina LeBlanc, a registered dietitian with Ochsner Health System. Every lunch should contain fiber, protein and dairy, LeBlanc says, offering these… Continue reading →

Cancer Q&A, Sept. 1, 2014

My brother was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer but is not on any treatment regimen other than what is considered “watchful waiting.” What exactly is that? According to the National Cancer Institute, “watchful waiting” is closely monitoring a patient’s condition but withholding treatment until symptoms appear or change. Watchful waiting can also be… Continue reading →

Alzheimer's Q&A, Sept. 1, 2014

If I suspect I have some kind of memory impairment, possibly Alzheimer’s disease, what kind of evaluation or assessments should I expect when I visit my physician? An early and accurate diagnosis can ensure you get appropriate treatment and care, and that you can access educational resources and support. The first step is to make… Continue reading →

Controversial weight loss method gets mind on board to help drop pounds

When Tom Wood first joined his wife at a hypnosis weight loss class, he was a skeptic. Linda Allred’s mixture of weight loss instruction and hypnosis did not make sense to the regional sales manager for DuPont. “I was going to go to the classes and be this woman’s worst nightmare,” he said. But… Continue reading →