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Sweet Science

Just in time for trick-or-treating, you’ll find my story on “Candy, Unwrapped” in the latest issue of OWL magazine. Learn how candy is manufactured, the tricks to make it even more appealing, and how you can make your own at home! My most recent collection of “Good News: Five Reasons to Smile” stories is also out, in the October issue of Reader’s Digest, with the November set about to be released.

For the next few months (or longer), you may not see the usual updates in this space announcing newly published articles. I’m still writing, but currently pursuing projects that have pulled me away from magazine and web writing. Take care, and keep learning new things.

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Living with Mystery

Covid-19 often has a tendency to raise more questions than answers. For my article “Living with Long Covid,” featured in the new September issue of Reader’s Digest, I interviewed several people who have been grappling with this strange new long-term disorder. I am grateful to all of them for being so open with their difficult experiences, in the hopes it might raise awareness and understanding. I also uncovered some recent research insights, and checked in with the experts who are working hard to find explanations – and solutions.

My latest two collections of “Good News: Five Reasons to Smile” stories also appear in the September and July/August issues of Reader’s Digest. In the August/September issue of Zoomer magazine, you’ll find my brief piece about the potential brain benefits of cranberries.

It’s been a busy spring. My health features have appeared in a couple of recent issues of Reader’s Digest magazine. In April, I presented some proven home remedies for common ailments that plague us, from warts to hiccups to stinky feet! In June, I shared important strategies for keeping healthy and safe (and protecting your loved ones) in this ever-unpredictable extreme heat of summer. My short piece explaining the links between generosity and happiness was published in the April/May issue of Zoomer. Watch this space for news of other upcoming magazine stories.

I’ve also started covering a regular roundup of uplifting stories from around the world for Reader’s Digest. Among my first collection, in the June issue: A little boy in South Africa cleans beach litter and fundraises for tree planting, and a Japanese woman in her 80s creates a free game app to entertain others her age. The section is called “Good News: Five Reasons to Smile” and appears in every issue.

I hope all of you find reasons to smile this summer.

I’ve enjoyed writing for OWL magazine for many years, so it was fun to take on my first assignment for its little sister, Chickadee. My piece for kids aged six to nine, which explains the science of seeing colours, appears in the newest March issue of Chickadee.

From colours to crunches: In the February/March issue of Zoomer magazine, I write about the pros and cons of returning to in-person gym workouts instead of at-home exercise – and the relative cost of both – in my article, “Sweat Equity.”

Lastly, I had the pleasure of interviewing four Canadian leaders in the world of laboratory medicine to get their take on what new and exciting technologies they see coming down the pipes – developments that could change the way professionals practise in this field. That story ran in the winter issue of the Canadian Journal of Medical Laboratory Science.

Keeping your immune system in fine form is probably more important these days than it’s ever been. The January/February issue of Reader’s Digest features my cover story on effective ways to boost your immune function, from getting vaccinated to reducing chronic stress. There are tips here for everyone!

I’ve also begun a series of guest blog posts for Spinal Cord Injury Canada. You can visit the organization’s website to read my first two posts, about what to expect as you age with a spinal cord injury, and how to keep your skeleton strong.

Writing, Writing

I’ve been busy these past weeks, working on a range of magazine stories covering health, science and technology topics. This means that starting early in the new year, you’ll be seeing my byline here and there. I’ve also begun working on a regular blog series for a national non-profit organization – more on that to come. Stay tuned.

A Time of Change

It’s been a long while since I’ve posted an update, as I’ve experienced a significant personal loss that took my attention away from freelance writing for some time. Now I’m back to work, in some ways relating to the kids who are re-starting school this week. It’s a time of change and adjustments. So what did you miss? My monthly medical mysteries in Reader’s Digest, which I’d pre-written, continued to appear up until last month. And back at the end of last year, I wrote a story from the heart, “Stop Telling People with Disabilities They Might Be Better Off Dead,” that was published in the Toronto Star. I’m already working on new pieces for upcoming magazines, so you can look forward to more updates in this space.

You’ve Got Snow

If you live in or near Toronto, you might have witnessed the first snowfall of the season last night. Seems a little unusual for the first of November, but then again, not much is normal about this year! My medical mystery in the new issue of Reader’s Digest takes place in Australia: What is causing a little boy to lose his ability to walk and speak, and is there a way to help him? Plus, in case you missed it, the October issue of the same magazine carried my cover story on coping with aches and pains. Check out 11 strategies that have brought relief to other Canadians dealing with pain – perhaps they’ll work for you, too. Until I write again, be well, watch your step, and be kind to others!

Autumn Update

It’s been a wild few months for all kinds of reasons, and now suddenly the leaves are changing colours. When I haven’t been tied up with new and unexpected responsibilities – some closely related to the current challenges of our times, and others just coincidentally plunked down over top – I’ve been carving out work time. I discussed the not-to-be-ignored symptoms of heart attack in the March issue of Reader’s Digest, and the power of high-protein foods in the July/August issue of Zoomer magazine. I’ve also continued to write about medical mysteries in every issue of Reader’s Digest, covering all kinds of strange ailments affecting patients in Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Nepal, to name a few.

As a writer who focuses on health topics, I often have the privilege of speaking to top medical experts; this year, more than ever, I feel immense gratitude for the dedication, hard work and sacrifices of these individuals. Here’s hoping we all continue to stay healthy and safe over the home stretch of this pandemic.

January is often thought of as a month of renewal, but it can be hard to think that way when the trees are still very bare, and the ground is still very frozen. Nevertheless, my latest magazine articles may provide you with inspiration. In particular, my cover story in the January/February edition of Reader’s Digest, “How to Live to 100 and Love It,” offers dozens of suggestions for tweaking your day-to-day routines and choices – all proven to enhance your odds of living a longer, healthier life. Also in this issue: my medical mystery column explores the case of a little boy with what appears to be appendicitis… but turns out to be something shockingly different, taking even his surgeon by surprise.

In my feature story in the January/February issue of Zoomer magazine, four Canadians share the secrets behind their weight loss – and since one size does not fit all (pun intended), their strategies are very different. Flip to my article, “Drink Up,” on the latest crazes in beverages (activated charcoal, anyone?), and find out which claims are supported by science, and which drinks will simply drain your cash.

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