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When a Placebo Isn't, But May Work Anyway

When a Placebo Isn't, But May Work Anyway

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

Here's what we're checking out today:

Placebo Effect: A new study suggests that patients can get relief from irritable bowel syndrome by taking a placebo – even when they know it's a placebo, reports Ed Silverman of Pharmalot. But Respectful Insolence blogger Orac points to some holes in the well-publicized study. 

Flu Season: Remember last year, when we were all standing in line for our H1N1/swine flu vaccine? Thankfully, the 2010-2011 flu season is mild so far, and this year's vaccine matches well to the influenza strains circulating around the globe, the CDC reports.

Kid's Health: In California, health insurers say they'll once again start selling children-only plans on the individual market in the wake of a new state law penalizing them for not offering them, Duke Helfand reports for the Los Angeles Times. Insurers had previously pulled the plans because of health reform provisions.

Nutrition: The pro-veggie Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine group highlights what it calls the year's worst cookbooks for healthy eating, and provides some healthier alternatives, Jennifer LaRue Huget reports for the Washington Post.

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