• Featured News

    Housecall: Animals can be good for what ails you

a smiling older man leaning on a large dog on a couch

Pet therapy: Animals as healers
Is medicine going to the dogs? Yes, but in a good way. Pet therapy is gaining fans in health care and beyond. From helping people recover from, or better cope with, health problems such as anxiety, pain, heart disease and cancer, to providing comfort and enjoyment for nursing home residents, animals can be good for what ails you. Here's what you need to know.

Skin biopsy
A skin biopsy removes cells or skin samples from the surface of your body so that they can be examined to provide information about your medical condition. A skin biopsy may be necessary to diagnose or treat skin conditions and diseases, including dermatitis, suspicious moles or growths, and skin cancer. Learn more about the three main types of skin biopsies and what you can expect during the procedure.

What are the symptoms of aspirin allergy?
Reactions to aspirin are common and occur within minutes to hours of taking the medication. If you have an aspirin allergy or sensitivity, you also may have a reaction to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), including ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB and others) and naproxen sodium (Aleve). And aspirin and other NSAIDs are found in many over-the-counter medications, so it's important to check labels carefully. Learn more from Dr. James Li, a Mayo Clinic allergist and immunologist.

Are liquid calories sabotaging your weight-loss efforts?
When you're trying to control your calorie intake, it's important to be mindful of what and how much you're drinking. Although milk and juice have important nutrients and can be part of a healthy diet, these liquids contain calories. When you're counting calories, your best beverage choice is water. Learn more from Katherine Zeratsky, a Mayo Clinic registered dietitian nutritionist.

Nutrition facts: A guide to food labels
Video: 'Modified Pushup'
Sexual health and aging: Keep the passion alive

Shrimp marinated in lime juice and Dijon mustard
Gazpacho with chickpeas
Tuna salad sandwiches
Vegetarian kebabs

Hold the soap when washing fruits and veggies
You know that it's important to wash fresh fruits and vegetables before eating them. It's not necessary to use soap or cleaning sprays, though. Running water and a little scrubbing should remove dirt and germs from fresh produce adequately.

Need practical advice on diet and exercise? Want creative solutions for stress and other lifestyle issues? Discover more healthy lifestyle topics at mayoclinic.org.

Receive a free e-subscription to Housecall and other health newsletters.