In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Harvard Health Letters: Generic drugs: Don't ask, just tell

By P.J. Skerrett, M.D. | Greater use of generic drugs could save the healthcare system--and American consumers--billions of dollars that would be better spent elsewhere. So what's holding us back? Some consumers are reluctant to use generic medications, thinking they are inferior to "the real thing."

Doctors are also a big part of the problem. Up to half of physicians hold negative perceptions about generic drugs. And a new study published this month in JAMA Internal Medicine shows that about 4 in 10 doctors sometimes or often prescribe a brand-name drug just because their patients ask for it.

Prescribing a brand-name drug when a generic is available "is a huge source of wasteful spending that can be prevented," says Eric G. Campbell, Ph.D., professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, who led the new study.

Every medicine has a generic name. It's almost always the name of the drug's active compound. Brand names are added by the marketing departments of pharmaceutical companies.


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To stimulate research and offset the cost of developing new medications, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration allows a company that develops a new drug to be the only one to sell it for a specified period. When that's over, other companies can sell a medication made with the same active ingredient. These are the generics.

Some people think of generics as knock offs of the original, like the "Rolex" watch or "Prada" bag a street vendor might sell. That's not correct. Generic drugs are chemical clones of their brand-name counterparts. By law, a generic drug must contain the same active ingredients as the brand-name drug be identical in strength, dosage form, and administration work the same way in the body (be bioequivalent) meet the same standards for identity, strength, purity, and quality be made by the same rules the FDA has set for the brand-name drug.

What's different is the look of the drug and the inactive ingredients. Generics contain different coloring agents, binders, and preservatives than the brand-name drug. These can make a difference in how the drug works for some individuals, but that's uncommon.

There are several ways to find out if the medications you have generic versions. The best is the Food and Drug Administration's Drugs@FDA. Others include (free registration required) and

Campbell's team crunched numbers from a survey of nearly 2,000 physicians from seven specialties. Overall, 37 percent said they sometimes or often prescribed a brand-name drug over a generic when a patient asked for it. This was more common among doctors who'd been practicing for more than 30 years (43 percent) than those practicing for 10 years or fewer (31 percent), doctors working alone or with one partner (46 percent). than those in a group practice or medical school setting (35 percent to 37 percent), and doctors who took free drug samples, were paid for pharmaceutical company speaking or consulting, or received food, gifts, or travel reimbursement from a pharmaceutical company.

It's hard to resist a patient's request for a brand-name drug, says Campbell. Doctors are often evaluated on how satisfied their patients are; it's easier to say yes than risk a negative evaluation. They tend to have packed schedules, and it takes less time to write the brand-name prescription than it does to explain why the generic will do just fine. And some are influenced, consciously or not, by their interactions with drug company representatives.

According to the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, the use of generic prescription drugs in place of their brand-name counterparts saved $192 billion last year. We could be doing even better. Seven of the 10 top best-selling drugs in the United States (accounting for $39 billion in sales last year) are brand-name drugs that are also available as generics.

Much of the extra cost of brand-name drugs falls on you, the consumer. The co-pay for a brand-name product usually is a lot more than for its generic equivalent. And the higher costs of brand-name drugs that aren't covered by co-pays are reflected in higher health insurance costs.

In most states, a doctor has to write "brand only" on the prescription if he or she does not want you to have a generic. The next time you need a refill, why not ask, "Hey, doc, can I get a generic?" instead of asking for the brand-name version.

(P.J. Skerrett, M.D., is editor of the Harvard Health blog:, and managing editor for digital publishing at Harvard Health Publications.)

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