Dr. Oz, March 18, 2013, opens the show by saying that 1 in 10of us will be victims of some type of scam this year and Oz says health scams are going to be exposed today. Jeff Rossen starts it out by talking about how our food may be spoiling before it even gets to the super market. He shows us trucks with broken cooling systems and boxes of meat melting in 100 degree heat. He says we are playing Russian roulette with our food supply. Police say that they are pulling over trucks with broken cooling weekly.
Oz says that in 4 hours of exposure to heat, dangerous bacteria could build up on our food. Rossen says the food companies are not maintaining these systems or are just cutting the cooling systems off to save money. Grocery stores do inspect these shipments but Rossen says the companies actually turn on the cooling systems just before they deliver the food so it looks like it has been properly stored. Elizabeth Cohen says we should always smell our food and if it has a bad odor then we need to either not buy it or throw it out.
Rossen says the FDA has not acted on this after Congress took it up in 2008 and even after his show exposed the problem. Now Elizabeth talks about how insurance companies are canceling policies when people are getting sick. She went to Health Net to talk about one person who was sold insurance and then had the policy cancelled when she was diagnosed with cancer. The company went through her health records and past problems she had that were fixed and then cancelled her policy in the middle of her treatment.
Cohen says that this one lady contested the decision and she beat the insurance company with a 9 million dollar settlement. She says more people need to fight when their insurance policy is cancelled. Cohen says this is a systematic problem with health insurance companies. Oz says he did some research and was shocked at the number of people who have their coverage cancelled when they are diagnosed with a disease. Cohen says she knows one person who was cancelled because they failed to tell the company that they had acne as a teenager.
Cohen says if your insurance gets cancelled, you need to fight this and their are many advocacy groups out there that will help you fight this. The new Obamacare is supposed to make this type thing not happen but Cohen says it is still going on.
Anthony Melchiorri is up now and he says that every hotel he has visited has had cleanliness issues. Oz asks what the worst he has ever seen was while checking a room? He says it has to be the 2 inch rusty nail that was on one bed that caused him the most trouble because he couldn’t figure out where it came from. He says the problems with cleanliness is directly related to the management not giving the employees the tools they need to clean a room properly. We get a list of what to look for in rooms.
First, the carpets are usually vacuumed regularly but are seldom shampooed and this is a big problem. Second, he says to always use the plastic cups that are sealed. He says he has seen too many maids use dirty towels to wipe out a glass and then put it back on the counter. Next, the remote control is usually the most germ filled part of the room because it is handled by so many people and it stays on the bed with us while we are doing all sorts of things. Finally, he says throw pillows are usually not cleaned and just put back on the bed. Anthony says that these have been on the floor or other places and it is disgusting to see them where you are about to lay your head to sleep.
Anthony says if we find something wrong in our rooms to always be polite when we complain about it. He says most managers will fix the problem. He says if you cannot get the problem fixed then go on the internet and complain as much as possible. He says if we read reviews online, make sure they are specific about certain things and not too general. General reviews are usually fake. Anthony says that 95% of the reviews you see out there are real.
Now Oz asks the panel to talk about how to avoid being scammed. First, Jeff says that we need to cal out the scammers and report them. He says we need to get over our embarrassment and tell people. He also says to ask as many questions as possible before making a decision on any deal. Oz asks about food and Jeff says the food labels can be off by 20% on the calorie count of a product. He says these labels actually shocked him in how inaccurate they are. These are the prepackaged foods we buy every day. He actually found one company that was 70% off in what their label said verses what the product actually had.
Elizabeth says we need to scrutinize our hospital bills carefully. She says it is a big problem with people being charged for stuff they did not use. Cohen says she saw one bill where a patient was charged over 100 dollars for a pain pill that is available over the counter for pennies. She recommends that we go over our bills carefully before we pay them.
Melchiorri says we need to start rating a hotel the minute we walk in the front door. he says we need to start deducting a point for each thing that is wrong. If we get three deductions we need to go somewhere else if they are not fixed. He says we pay too much to stay in a room and we deserve to get what we pay for.
We all have stress daily and Oz says that too much of this can be dangerous for our health. Marla Diebler comes out to talk about a simple test we can give ourselves to see if we are suffering from too much anxiety. You need to answer the following questions and look at the last two weeks. You give yourself one point for several days, 2 points for more than half the days and 3 points if you had the symptom for almost all of the days. Of course, 0 points if you have not had the feeling at all in the last two weeks.
Here is the test:
1. How often have you been feeling nervous, anxious or on edge?
2. How often have you not been able to stop or control your worry?
3. How often have you been worrying about many different things?
4. How often have you had trouble relaxing?
5. How often have you been so restless that it’s hard to sit still?
6. How often have you become easily annoyed or irritable?
7. How often have you felt afraid for no reason, as if something awful might happen?
If you scored 0 to 4 points you are dealing with an average stress level and this can be managed. 5 to 9 points you have elevated stress levels and need to do things to calm yourself or try not to worry so much. 10 to 14 points means you are actually having physical symptoms along with the metal ones and this can be dangerous. 15 points or more means you have severe stress and can be at risk for panic attacks where you think you are feeling like you are going to have a heart attack.
Oz says we need to control our anxiety because it can lead to heart problems and health problems and even cause us to gain weight. he says there are some natural ways to lower our stress levels and get more GABA, which is like a natural Xanax pill. First, drink one glass of Kefir a day as it provides a valium like effect. Next, 1/2 cup of Kimchi each day will speed up your metabolism and help calm you. Finally, 2 to 3 glasses of Oolong Tea each day will help to calm you down. Dr. Mike Dow says you can also eat 1/4 cup Pumpkin Seeds, Edamame, Shrimp, and Nori to increase our Tryptophan levels and calm ourselves down with increased serotonin levels.