Medical Conditions

Medical Conditions2018-05-22T14:17:14-05:00

Can You Still Be Healthy if You’re Overweight?

We are frequently reminded that Americans are getting fatter and fatter. How many times have you seen television footage of headless people walking down the street with the camera focused on the abdomens, thighs and buttocks of very overweight people? A former surgeon general of the United States believed obesity [...]

Inventory of Stress Symptoms

What is stress? Stress is the mental and/or physical tension or strain the body experiences in response to events happening in a person's life. Stress affects our internal organs, like the heart and stomach, and impedes our mental state, emotional reactions, relationships and spirituality. Medical problems, such as heart disease, [...]

Body Image: A Major Challenge During Recovery

One of the most challenging aspects of eating disorders treatment and recovery is dealing with body image.  A big reason for this is that the body image expectations depicted in every form of media give the clear message that NO body is acceptable the way it is.  So, if the [...]

Orthorexia Nervosa: Optimal Health Gone Wrong

“Orthorexia Nervosa” is an obsession with eating the “right” foods or the “healthiest” food for the purpose of optimal health. It begins with an enthusiastic interest in following a stringent dietary practice, such as vegetarianism or raw food veganism. It is not that these diets cause orthorexia. Rather, when these [...]

How Depression, Heart Disease and Diabetes are Interrelated

The body and mind are inevitably linked and the profound influence of one on the other is becoming much more accepted in the medical and lay communities. An unhealthy body can cause emotional disturbances just as psychiatric conditions can trigger or exacerbate diseases within the body. The stomach, liver and [...]

Type A Personality Increases Susceptibility to Heart Disease

We’ve all known someone who is extremely impatient, driven and who conducts business on the cell phone while rushing to her kid’s soccer game that started 30 minutes ago. While often hurrying herself and others, too busy for chit-chat and overly committed, she still looks successful and we wonder “how [...]

New Year’s Resolutions to Live By

The new year is almost upon us and, of course, we are being inundated with commercials for diet and weight loss products.  ‘Start this program’ or ‘take this pill’ are old and uninspiring messages from companies that survive off of the failure of their products – there is something really [...]

Rescuing the Brain: A Critical Part of Recovery

Recovering from an eating disorder is a complicated endeavor because of the interplay between genetic predisposition, symptom severity, environmental/lifestyle factors and often, the patient’s ambivalence about changing behaviors they both ‘want’ and hate. I have attended several presentations by Ovidio Bermudez, MD, the Medical Director of Child and Adolescent Services [...]

The Effects of Stress on Heart Health

Most people are aware that there is a connection between stress and heart disease. “Stress” refers to excessive pressures or demands that are placed upon us or that we place upon ourselves. In our fast paced, technology-driven, do-things-to-the-extreme culture, persistently increasing pressures and demands are part of everyday life. Unfortunately, [...]

Type D Personality

Most people are familiar with the Type A – intense, overachieving, perfectionistic – and Type B – noncompetitive, relaxed – personalities and the link between Type A personality and heart disease. But now, Type D personality seems to be an even stronger predictor of cardiovascular health. Psychologist Johan Denollet, a [...]

“Relax – I Don’t Have Time To Relax!”

“Look, I own a business. I work 65 to 80 hours a week and I’m barely making it. I race around constantly just to keep the customers I have.” “No, I don’t really have a social life anymore. I have one friend and he’s a great guy, but he’s not [...]

Is the ‘Obesity Epidemic’ Overrated?

We are frequently reminded that Americans are getting fatter and fatter. How many times have you seen television footage of headless people walking down the street with the camera focused on their excessive abdomens, thighs and buttocks? The surgeon general believes obesity is a greater threat than terrorism. Public health [...]

Low Cholesterol May Affect Your Mood

The link between high cholesterol and heart disease has been well established. The cholesterol problem we hear about most often is high cholesterol and most people are working on lowering cholesterol levels with medication, exercise and healthy eating. But did you know that if cholesterol levels get too low, depression [...]

I Hate Exercise

“I hate exercise.“ This was the first thing a 78 year old woman said to me at our initial appointment when I was reviewing the reasons her cardiologist referred her to me. The doctor wanted her to increase her activity level and lose weight. The woman had some, but not [...]

How Do Psychologists Treat Heart Disease?

Behavioral medicine is a specialty area within the profession of psychology that focuses on treating patients with medical conditions. Many medical problems, including digestive disorders, chronic pain, asthma, diabetes, obesity and heart disease, are often linked with behavioral and psychological factors that affect the onset, course and recovery of these [...]

Heart Disease Risk Factor Assessment

The way we live our lives has a lot to do with whether we develop heart disease. Knowing your risk factors for heart disease gives you the opportunity to make the long-term changes necessary to eliminate or reduce your chance of developing heart problems. By making lifestyle changes after a [...]

The Link Between Depression and Heart Disease

There is substantial research evidence showing a strong connection between depression and heart disease. The notion that depression is typical in patients with heart disease, nothing to worry about and will go away on its own is inaccurate and dangerous. Many patients already have heart disease and depression and there [...]

Heart Attack or Anxiety Attack: Common Symptoms Can Cause Distress

Anxiety is an emotional reaction that occurs in response to a threat or to fear. Anxiety commonly results in feelings of nervousness, apprehension, restlessness and internal shakiness (the “butterflies”). Anxiety can cause worrying, poor concentration, tension, difficulty making decisions and sleep problems. Physical signs of anxiety include an uneasy stomach, [...]

Foods For Healthy Living

The following foods have been found to be health-promoting. This is not an exhaustive list, nor are these the only foods you should eat. It is important to maintain balanced eating that includes the three main nutrients we require everyday -- carbohydrate, protein and fat. This list is meant to [...]

Emotional Factors Affecting Heart Disease in Women

It has always been thought that heart disease is a man’s problem, but it kills a half million women every year and the number is growing. Heart disease kills more women than men and women are more likely to have a second heart attack within a year of their first [...]

Depression Risk Assessment

            Children, adolescents and adults can get depression. Depression can be triggered by an event or by chronic stress. It can also come on out of the blue and be the result of genetic or biological factors that the person cannot control. Do you feel [...]

Benefits of Relaxation Therapy with Cardiac Patients

All of us experience anxiety at one time or another, but for those facing cardiac disease, anxiety, worry and stress can accelerate the progression of heart disease and/or interfere with recovery. Continual emotional distress, whether it is recognized or not, affects overall quality of life. Do you feel anxious? Some [...]

Anxiety Quiz

Children, adolescents and adults can experience anxiety. Anxiety can be triggered by an event or by chronic stress. It can also happen without explanation and be the result of genetic or biological factors that the person has no ability to prevent.           Do you spend a [...]

Does Weight Loss Always Result in Improved Heart Health?

We always hear that weight loss is necessary for the prevention and treatment of heart disease and diabetes.  But is this widely accepted belief really accurate? While carrying around an excess of weight does not cause, but can contribute to heart disease and diabetes, weight loss as the standard treatment [...]

Internet Sites for Information on Senior Health Issues

Several websites that provide medical information specifically for older adults are now available.  These resources can be used to help you learn more about the medical issues you may be experiencing. Understanding your diagnoses, treatments and expected outcomes of treatment is especially important for your health.  Many people don’t follow [...]

Go to Top