Medical Myths and Why We Fall for Them

On 11/30/20 tune in to KPFA radio, 94.1FM, from 2-3PM for About Health

It’s often difficult to separate health information from health misinformation. What are reliable sources? Are you more likely to believe a dramatic story about a disease rather than a recent study in a medical journal? Is what you are reading about the Covid-19 pandemic based on science or are social media sites spreading news that is even more contagious than the virus?

My guest, Dr. Seema Yasmin, has written a book called Viral BS: Medical Myths and Why We Fall for Them, where she dispels common myths and casts a critical eye on the cultural misconceptions, disinformation, and conspiracy theories surrounding health.

Call us at 1-800-958-9008 with your questions such as—Can your zip code predict when you will die? Should you space out childhood vaccines? Does talcum powder cause cancer? Do patients cared for by female doctors live longer? What is fact and what is fiction? Give us a call! 

Dr. Seema Yasmin is a Stanford professor, medical analyst for CNN, and science correspondent for Conde Nast Entertainment. She is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, medical doctor, disease detective and author, known for her reporting on Ebola and Zika. Her new book is Viral BS: Medical Myths and Why We Fall for Them. Dr. Yasmin was a disease detective in the Epidemic Intelligence Service at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention where she chased outbreaks in maximum-security prisons, American Indian reservations, border towns, and hospitals. You can find our more about her at seemayasmin.com, or connect on Twitter @DoctorYasmin and Instagram: @drseemayasmin.

 

Understanding Depression

Listen now at to the show from 11/23/20 on KPFA.org—94.1FM

https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=345836

I was in conversation with Monique Thompson, PhD, about her new book, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Depression

During these stressful times many people are feeling anxious and depressed, and some people are struggling with grief from the loss of a loved one. Feeling stress, grief, or having the blues, is not the same as suffering from depression. Depression is one of the most common mood disorders, and is highly treatable, although no two people are affected the same way by depression and there is no “one-size-fits-all” for treatment.

1-800-273-8255  is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. If you or someone you know is considering suicide, call this number. The Lifeline provides 24/7 free and confidential support for people in distress, and resources for you and your loved ones.

Guest:

Monique Thompson is a licensed clinical psychologist. She received a doctoral degree in clinical psychology from California School of Professional Psychology. She is a certified cognitive therapist and Diplomate of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy. Dr. Thompson is trained in Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Insomnia (CBT-I), an empirically supported treatment for insomnia and other sleep disorders. Dr. Thompson has extensive experience providing individualized cognitive therapy to adults and teens. She treats depression, anxiety disorders, sleep disorders, executive functioning deficits, and challenging life transitions. She has practiced in a variety of settings, including Kaiser Permanente in Walnut Creek and Pleasanton, UC Berkeley, and private practice. She spent several years at the Golden Bear Mood and Sleep Research Center at UC Berkeley as a member of a treatment development team, and has published research on memory mechanisms and interventions to improve individual therapy outcomes. She is adjunct faculty at UC Berkeley Extension. She recently co-authored a book on Teen Insomnia with Dr. Michael Tompkins, The Teen Insomnia Workbook. Her second book, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Depression: Strategies to Challenge Negative Thinking and Start Living Your Life was released on November 13, 2020. You can reach her at Monique Thompson, PsyD.
(510) 652-4455, ext. 1.

Increasing Wellness and Recovering Inner Peace

Listen now to the show we did on 11/9/20 on 94.1FM, KPFA.org

https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=344799 

2020 has brought unexpected challenges and losses to all of us. Last week was a nail bitter as we waited to find out who our next President would be. Covid-19 numbers and deaths are going up again, and an end to the pandemic is not in site, and not around the corner.

How do we recover our grounding and some sense of stability? What helps you move from anxiety to calm? Join my guests to discover free and easy ways to calm yourself and protect your health.

AMELIA BARILI Ph.D., travelled the world studying ancient traditions on how to develop good health from the inside out. She received her diploma in Yoga Therapy and Philosophy, in 1972, at Kaivalyadhama Yoga Institute, India. Having studied the Medical Qigong system with old Chinese masters, Amelia is a pioneer at integrating both wisdom traditions. She has brought these ancient contemplative practices into the academic environment and teaches meditative techniques as tools to overcome stress and foster deep learning. She is an award-winning faculty at UC Berkeley and the Osher LifeLong Learning Institute, where she teaches youth and older adults a systematic embodied mind approach for personal and community transformation. She has been teaching workshops nationally and internationally at centers such as Omega, Esalen, and Mount Madonna Center, for over three decades. Her most recent workshops are on “Letting Go of Anxiety, Fear and Depression” and “Cultivating Resilience and Inner Guidance in Uncertain Times”. Since March 2020 she has been offering free Saturday online workshops, in Spanish and English, to assist participants in developing resilience and inner strength when confronted with big challenges. For more information, visit ameliabarili.com

 

Glenn Berkenkamp is a former bodybuilder and fitness expert, and is a storyteller, screenwriter, transformational speaker, walk leader, and the creator of the Writing Into The Now workshop. He is the author of Mastery: Living the Highest You, Would My Heart Think This Thought? and Walking with Glenn Berkenkamp: 35 Wellness Walks to Expand Awareness, Increase Vitality, and Reduce Stress. He has explored and shared ultimate wellness and inspired living through the mind-body-spirit connection for a quarter century. His talks, workshops, and writings elevate our daily experience, unite us in something greater, and bring us to a larger awareness of who we are. From this space, the impossible often becomes possible and the ordinary, beautiful.  He resides in Northern California.

The Doctor Is In

Listen now to About Health on KPFA Radio—94.1FM, (10/26/20)

https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=343939 

Dr. Michael Lenoir and I discussed current health issues, such as Covid 19, disparities in health care for black people, other people of color, and folks who are low income.  

Michael LeNoir, MD, is an allergist in the East Bay, board certified in both the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, and served on the Board the American Association of Certified Allergist. He is also an associate clinical professor at UCSF, and for 20 years he was the Director of Allergy Services at San Francisco General Hospital. He has a special interest in asthma in the African American and high risk communities and genetic polymorphisms. He served as the President of the Northern California Allergy Association. From 1998 to 2000 Dr. Lenoir served as the chair of the National Medical Association’s Allergy and Asthma Section and was the recipient of the first Floyd Malveaux Award. Dr. Lenoir has served as the chairperson of the Underserved Committee of the American Academy of Allergy.

Dr. Lenoir served as the President of the National Association of Physician Broadcasters.  In 1994 and 2001, he received the Ken Alvord Distinguished Community Service Award from that organization. He was one of 50 physicians, nationwide, chosen to receive the Pfizer Positive Physician Award from the American Medical Association.  Additionally, in 1988, he was named the Oakland Citizen of the Year by the Oakland Tribune and named one of America’s leading African American Allergist by Black Enterprise Magazine.  Since 2000, Dr. Lenoir has been named as one of the 200 best physicians by San Francisco or by Oakland Magazine. He has served as the President of the Ethnic Health Institute at Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, Chair of the Board of the African American Wellness Project. He has served as a member of the Board of Directors at Children’s Hospital Oakland. From 1981 to 1993, Dr. LeNoir served as the medical editor for KCBS radio, hosting a 2 hour weekly talk show. Since 1985, he has been the CEO of the Ethnic Health America Network that produces the Telly award winning Ethnic Health America Program, a 30-minute TV health magazine at one time aired in 1400 cities nationwide on MBC Network. He continues to do radio and podcast programs, such as Black Doctors Speak collaborating with blackdoctors.org.  He has 4 daughters and 5 grandchildren.

Managing Our Anger and Outrage During Difficult Times

Listen now: https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=342829

KPFA 94.1FM 10/12/20

People are under a great deal of stress these days, which can easily lead to frustration and angry outbursts. Anger is a normal emotion that can help us understand what’s wrong, but problems occur when we don’t know how to handle the anger we feel. Is anger causing health, school, work, or relationship problems for you?

Join us to talk about ways to manage our reactions to frustration, worry, and stress. There is so much division and conflict in our country, it’s no surprise that tempers flare and feelings get hurt.

Guest: 

Michael A. Tompkins, PhD, is a licensed psychologist, co-director and co-founder of the San Francisco Bay Area Center for Cognitive Therapy, Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of California at Berkeley, and an adjunct faculty member for the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy. Dr. Tompkins serves on the Advisory Board of Magination Press, and he is the author or co-author of 12 books, including My Anxious Mind: A Teen’s Guide to Managing Anxiety and Panic and his newly released book Zero to 60: A Teens Guide to Manage Frustration, Anger, and Everyday Irritations.  He lives in Oakland California, and you can find out more at sfbacct.com and on Twitter at @drmatompkins.

A Better Divorce

According to the American Psychological Association there is one divorce approximately every 36 seconds.  That’s nearly 2,400 divorces every day, 16,800 divorces every week, and 876,000 divorces a year.

Listen now to show aired 9/14/20 on KPFA.org—94.1FM with Ann Gold Buscho, PhD, author of “The Parent’s Guide to Birdnesting, A Child-Centered Solution to Co-Parenting During Separation and Divorce

https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=340955 

Ann Gold Buscho, PhD, is a licensed clinical psychologist who specializes in family issues and issues related to divorce, parenting, parenting planning, and coparenting counseling. She is the author of the newly released book, “The Parent’s Guide to Birdnesting.” She has professional and personal experience in nesting, coparenting, step parenting, and single-parenting issues. She works closely with family law professionals to help clients resolve their divorce privately and respectfully. She presents widely at state and national conferences for lawyers, mental health and financial experts on Collaborative Divorce, forgiveness practices, nesting during divorce, and consensual dispute resolution. She co-founded a treatment program for emergency responders where she volunteers regularly. Her husband is a retired police officer and psychologist. When not at work, she enjoys her children, grandchildren, hiking, and writing her next book.

Toxic Chemical Exposures

Listen Now to our show on About Health @KPFA.org— 94.1FM

https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=340172 

We discussed health issues facing our firefighting heroes, and also looked at common chemical exposures that occur in your home, school, and work. We are all exposed to chemicals in our homes that are harmful, but in fact these chemicals can cause great harm to our families and to firefighters.

“Air, water, food, and consumer products should be free of dangerous and untested chemicals. We believe that chemical makers have no right to expose you to concoctions that affect your family’s health. That’s why we work with parents, communities, businesses, workers, and government to protect children and families from toxic chemicals in our homes, workplaces, schools, and neighborhoods.Center for Environmental Health.

“Firefighters face occupational hazards on a daily basis. Now, new research shows they face additional risk just by gearing up. Through research and advocacy we aim to improve public health and end this threat of job-related cancer in the firefighting profession.”   —San Francisco Firefighters Cancer Prevention Foundation. 

 

Judy Levin is the Pollution Prevention Director at the Center for Environmental Health. For the past 10 years she’s been leading the Center’s campaign to reduce the use of toxic chemicals in a variety of products. Most recently, Judy has focused on healthier furniture, carpeting, and flooring. She has amassed hundreds of millions of dollars in buying power from government, higher education, and private businesses who want healthier furnishings, and this in turn has incentivized manufacturers to create these products. Judy was awarded the International Interior Design Association Leadership Award of Excellence for her work in the area of reducing the use of toxic flame retardant chemicals in furniture.

Tony Stefani is a retired Captain with the San Francisco Fire Department. In 2001, after 27 years of service, he was diagnosed with Transitional Cell Carcinoma in his right renal pelvis. After successful treatment Captain Stefani retired in 2003. Three years later he founded the San Francisco Firefighters Cancer Prevention Foundation, a foundation that has been dedicated to the early detection and prevention of cancer in both active and retired San Francisco Firefighters. Captain Stefani has also been involved with the Women Firefighters Biomonitoring Collaborative for the past 3 years and is a dedicated advocate supporting legislation on both the State and National level to reduce toxic chemical exposures to Firefighters and the population in general. He has been the recipient of many awards, including the Heroes and Hearts award, given by San Francisco General Hospital Foundation, which recognizes exceptional community service.

 

 

Pandemic Grandparents

Listen now to me and my guest Allison Briscoe-Smith for a discussion about what grandparents and families are dealing with during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

8/17/20, KPFA.org—94.1FM

https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=339302

 

In the US there are approximately 70 million grandparents, and for too many, physical contact with their young grandchildren has been cut off. Other grandparents have stepped into the role of childcare providers, and some have opened up their homes to their kids and grandkids full time.  How has this pandemic changed your role, and how are you dealing with the anxiety, isolation, or exhaustion from all the changes that have occurred?


Allison Briscoe-Smith, Ph.D., is the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and a full-time faculty member at the Wright Institute in Berkeley, CA. She is also a senior fellow at UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, where she serves as one of the hosts of the center’s popular Science of Happiness podcast. After earning her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from UC Berkeley, Dr. Briscoe-Smith’s research has focused on trauma/Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and how children understand race. She lectures widely and leads workshops on these issues for parents, educators, and many others. 

Pandemic Parenting

There is so much to consider during this pandemic as parents and grandparents do the best they can to keep their relationships with their children healthy and loving. There is no “right way” to get through this time in our lives…but if we can put our children at the center of our decisions, then we will nurture and keep safe the next generation. And in order to do this, parents MUST take care of themselves with enough sleep (your laughing now) healthy food, a little time each day to move your body, and deep gratitude for being alive and building your capacity to thrive in the face of adversity.

Many different events, thoughts, and emotions can trigger your yelling and frustration, but they are all modified or intensified by three unique and important factors: Your temperament, your child’s temperament, and how they fit together.

To learn more check out the links below:

-Article on temperament 

-Temperament survey to look at your temperament and also your child’s-

https://www.nurserona.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/PDF_ImpressChildTemp.pdf

-To learn more and to get a temperament assessment for a child 4months to 5years go to www.preventiveoz.org. 

-You can also read the classic book, “Raising Your Spirited Child,” by Mary Sheedy Kurcinka, or my book “Is That Me Yelling? A Parent’s Guide to Getting Your Kids to Cooperate Without Losing Your Cool.”

-You can also listen to a show on Temperament with Nurse Rona and Mary Sheedy Kurcinka http://ia802205.us.archive.org/0/items/childhood-matters-10-03-21/chilhood-matters-10-03-21.mp3

Pandemic Learning: The Stresses and Strategies of School at Home

This pandemic has brought an unprecedented amount of stress to parents as they figure out how to hold down their jobs while having their kids doing school from home. Unlike people who have chosen to provide their children with homeschooling, most parents want their kids in school with a trained teacher…and out of their hair. But we must all think about what we can do that preserves the loving relationships in the family, and work together to make a plan that accounts for everyone’s needs.

On 7/27/20 my guest was Denise Pope, Ph.D, on KPFA.org radio online—94.1FM

Listen now… https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=337970

Guest:

Denise Pope, Ph.D., is a Senior Lecturer at the Stanford University Graduate School of Education, where she specializes in student engagement, curriculum studies, qualitative research methods, and service learning. She is co-founder of ​Challenge Success​, a research and intervention project that provides schools and families the tools they need to raise healthy, motivated students. Challenge Success is an expanded version of the SOS: Stressed-Out Students project that Dr. Pope founded and directed from 2003-2008. She is the author of, ​”Doing School”: How We Are Creating a Generation of Stressed Out, Materialistic, and Miseducated Students​, which was awarded Notable Book in Education by the American School Board Journal, 2001, and lead author of ​”Overloaded and Underprepared: Strategies for Stronger Schools and Healthy, Successful Kids.”  She also co-hosts the Stanford University SiriusXM radio show called “School’s In.”

Dr. Pope lectures nationally on parenting techniques and pedagogical strategies to increase student health, engagement with learning, and integrity. She is a 3-time recipient of the Stanford University School of Education Outstanding Teacher and Mentor Award and was honored with the 2012 Education Professor of the Year “Educators’ Voice Award” from the Academy of Education Arts and Sciences.

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I'm thrilled to offer my book to parents, teachers, therapists, and anyone who cares for and about children. If you would like to set up a presentation or training for your child's school, or your work place, contact me at rona@nurserona.com.

Is That Me Yelling? is available in most bookstores and at Amazon

"Engaging and practical, humorous and evidence-based, prescriptive but not preachy, authoritative yet never stuffy, Is That Me Yelling? quickly rises to the top of the many parenting books I've ever read. Rona Renner provides thoughtful and achievable solutions. If you're a parent who has ever yelled at your kid and wished you hadn't, this book is for you."
Stephen P. Hinshaw, PhD, professor in the department of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley; and vice-chair of psychology at the University of California, S.F.

"Is That Me Yelling? is a complete and compassionate companion for every parent​ and ​educator​. ​With excellent examples from her extensive professional and personal experience, nurse Rona illustrates fundamental psychological principles and functional parenting practices with empathy and enthusiasm."
Marisol Muñoz-Kiehne, PhD, clinical psychologist, parent educator, radio host, and author.

Tips

Give Thanks to Mother... Every Day! download PDF (2009 English) or (2008 English)