The Girl in the Tree House by Jennifer Asbenson

On today’s show Jennifer Asbenson spoke to Dr. Oz about her harrowing experience at the hands of Andrew Urdiales. At the age of 19, Asbenson took a ride from a stranger one night and nearly lost her life. On September 27, 1992 Urdiales, a former U.S. Marine, had given Asbenson a lift when she was stuck at the bus stop having realized she missed the last bus. In the hours that followed, she was physically abused, tied up, and tossed into the truck of his car. Miraculously, she was able to escape the vehicle and survive. Urdiales, who killed eight other women between 1986 and 1996, described Asbenson as “the one who got away” when he was finally caught years after the incident. Here is an excerpt of her upcoming memoir, which talks about her life before and after this traumatic event and how this has shaped the course of her life. In this chapter, she discusses life as a second grader in the middle of nowhere:




In the News: Hospital Releases Playlist for CPR, Acetaminophen During Pregnancy May Cause Hyperactivity, Boy’s Giggle Fits End Up Being Epileptic Seizures

Your DJ is now your doctor. A New York hospital releases a playlist of songs for CPR. Music can set the mood at a dinner party, date night, and even when you need to save a life – thanks to New York Presbyterian Hospital. They recently released a Spotify playlist of songs that are all 100 beats per minute – the recommended rate for chest compressions during Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR). CPR can be easy. Kneel down at the person’s side and place the heel of you palm on the center of their chest. Place your other hand on top and interlace the fingers. Then lean over so your arms are straight and push down about 2 inches to the beat of Beyonce, ABBA, or even Shakira! Watch Dr. Oz teach hands-only CPR so you’re ready if a loved one ever needs it. (CNN)

Acetaminophen use during pregnancy may cause hyperactivity. According to a new study, taking acetaminophen (the main ingredient in Tylenol) during pregnancy may increase the chance of having a hyperactive child with emotional or behavioral issues. This ingredient, which is also found in allergy, flu, and sleeping medications may have more of an effect than was once realized. While doctors say that taking Acetaminophen only when needed is safe, they are now looking into other factors to determine if hyperactivity is directly related to this medication. (CNN)

Boy’s giggle fits actually epileptic seizures. Ever since he was a little boy, Justin Cho loved to giggle and laugh all the time. His family always assumed he was just a happy child, until one day the giggles lasted longer and he had a full-blown epileptic seizure. When he went to the hospital, doctors discovered that he had a benign lesion, known as a hypothalamic hamartoma inside his brain. This type of mass can cause development problems, cognitive disorders, and rage disorders as well, making it extra important that he was diagnosed at the age of nine and not any later. Six months since his surgery, Cho is no longer having any seizures and living life as a regular boy. (ABC)

In the News: Restful Sleep Can Dramatically Improve Mood, New Cholesterol Drug Can Reduce Risk of Heart Disease, CDC Ranks Most Sleep-Deprived Jobs

Counting sheep might be as good as counting cash. A good night’s sleep feels like winning the lottery. Ever notice that quality rest and relaxation makes you feel like a million bucks? Well, researchers at the University of Warwick followed thousands of British participants for four years and found that you’re not alone. People who reported improved quality of sleep or reduced usage of sleep medications had four year mood boosts comparable to lottery winners a couple years out from their big payoff. The scientists think it’s because sleep can have such a profound effect on both our physical and emotional health. Check out Dr. Oz’s favorite tips on getting better sleep. (TIME)

Breakthrough drug gives docs a change of heart. New cholesterol drug can protect patients most at risk for heart disease. A new cholesterol drug, Evolocumab is an injectable antibody that can lower lousy LDL cholesterol to unnaturally low levels according to a recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Participants in the study experienced a 15 percent decrease in their risk of cardiovascular events like heart attack and stroke. Although it’s only used for patients with the highest risk of heart disease, the study provides hope that we may soon have more effective ways to cut CVD risk in the future. Watch Dr. Oz and a team of cardiologists discuss one of the most common treatments for cholesterol, statins. (NYTIMES)

Have your dream job? You should keep dreaming. CDC ranks the most sleep deprived occupations. Multiple sleep research organizations say that less than seven hours of snoozing has been linked to issues like heart disease, obesity, and depression. Many experts think sleep deprivation may have something to do with our jobs. To find out how many of us are missing out on beauty rest, the CDC conducted a survey of American adults and found out which jobs get the least amount of sleep. They found that the worst offenders were communications equipment operators but several others made the list including health-care workers, firefighters, and transportation workers. The authors suggest we need to fix our poor sleep habits to improve our health. Find out your own sleep score today. (CBS)

In the News: Colon Cancer Risk Rising for Young People, World Happiness Report Gives Norway Top Ranking, Eating Vegetables May Reduce Stress

Colon cancer risk rising for young people. A recent study has found that Americans under 55 are seeing more colon and rectal cancer cases, with rates rising quickly. If you were born in 1990, you have twice the likelihood of developing colon cancer as if you were born in the ’50s. Since screenings are not common for patients under 50, when these cancers are diagnosed, they are often found at later stages. While there has been a notable increase in colon cancer cases among the population, future studies are required to answer the big question: why? Some symptoms to look out for are cramps, weight loss, constipation, bloating, and bloody stool. Since these symptoms can fall under the umbrella of so many other benign conditions, they are often ignored until the cancer worsens; this is why it’s so important to see a doctor immediately and to be prepared to get second and third opinions to be absolutely safe. To learn more about colon cancer, check out this fact sheet. (CNN)

World Happiness Report gives Norway top billing. According to this year’s World Happiness Report, which took 155 countries into consideration, Norway earned first place for overall happiness. Researchers considered social, socioeconomic, life expectancy, freedom, trust, and other factors into consideration when determining their rankings. The United States came in 14th place this year, with happiness levels declining by about .51 points. If you’re looking for places to travel to, other countries that broke the top 10 list include Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland, Finland, Netherlands, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and Sweden. (NYTIMES)

Eating vegetables may reduce stress. We all know that eating vegetables can help us lose weight, prevent various diseases, improve digestion, and give our skin a healthy boost, but now it looks like there’s another perk: stress relief. Studies have shown that eating three to four servings a day can lower anxiety levels by 14 percent, and eating five to seven servings of veggies and fruit combined, can lower stress by 23 percent. If you were looking for another reason to eat fresh produce, there you have it! Here are 10 ways to sneak some veggies into your diet. (FOOD&WINE)

In the News: New Obesity Gene May Impact African-Americans, Certain Foods May Help a Hangover, Tia Mowry Opens Up About Endometriosis

New obesity gene may impact African-Americans. Researches conducted a 1,500 participant study in Nigeria and found a genetic mutation known as SEMA4D that may be responsible for weight gain. They found that over 55% of people with this mutation were obese. Over two-thirds of Americans and nearly half of the African-American population are overweight or obese so it’s more important now than ever before to find out how this mutation causes weight gain and what can be done to prevent the number on the scale from growing. Looking to shed some pounds? Try the 21-Day Weight Loss Breakthrough Diet. (NBC)

Certain foods may help ease a hangover. Did you know that around 76% of adults experience hangovers? Whether you’ve experienced a miserable hangover before or you hope to prevent one in the future, the key is moderation. If you do wake up one morning after having one too many and need some relief, look for foods rich in vitamin A, vitamin B, zinc and potassium. Make sure to drink plenty of water and stick to foods like eggs, avocados, bananas, sweet potatoes, and yellow veggies. You can also try drinking coconut water, which is a healthier form of electrolyte-rich sports drinks and will help you feel better in no time. For more ideas, here are 11 foolproof hangover cures. (CNN)

Tia Mowry opens up about endometriosis. In a recent interview, Tia Mowry, one half of the famous Sister, Sister duo, spoke out about having painful endometriosis for years. When she was in her mid-20s, she had several surgeries to treat the condition, but the scar tissue kept returning and the symptoms didn’t go away. Eventually, her doctor told her that if she wanted to have children one day she had to change her diet, specifically cutting out dairy and sugar. As soon as she started eating healthier, her symptoms went away and she was able to conceive. Are you looking to cut back on sugar? Try Dr. Oz’s detox plan. (YAHOO)

The Many Benefits of Omega-3s


Written by Brian Dixon, PhD

No nutritional program is complete without a high-quality source of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids.

Fats are an essential part of our diet. However, we should limit unhealthy fat intake and encourage consumption of healthy fats. Saturated fats found in meat, milk, and cheese help to promote the formation of artery-clogging fatty deposits. The trans-fatty acids (found in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils) are even more harmful to our health. Monounsaturated fats found in vegetable oils do not promote arterial fat deposits and polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as the omega-3 fatty acids, are the most beneficial to overall health. Read more  »

In the News: Fecal Transplants May Normalize Blood Sugar, DNA Scan Finds Genes Linked to Autism, Veggie Cakes Popular in Japan

Repoopulating the gut: The future of diabetes management? Fecal transplant normalized blood sugar in mice. In a recent study, researchers fed healthy mice resveratrol, the molecule in red wine that may be the reason it has so many health benefits. Then, they transplanted the fecal matter from those mice into the intestines of mice that had insulin resistance (the hallmark of type 2 diabetes). They found that after just a couple weeks, those pre-diabetic mice had normalized blood sugar levels! While the scientists don’t yet understand how these fecal transplants help with blood sugar regulation, the study opens the door to the possibility of fecal transplant for more than just gut health. Watch Dr. Oz explain more about fecal transplants here! (SCIENCEDAILY)

New DNA scan finds 18 genes associated with autism. A new study of autistic participants and their relatives found a staggering number of genes linked to this condition. They found that 18 genes and 72 unique mutations may be involved in the symptoms. Autism is becoming increasingly common in the U.S., with studies showing that one in 45 kids is now diagnosed. While it’s not clear why this is happening, Autism Speaks, an autism advocacy organization, is hoping to answer questions and raise awareness with further research. (NBC)

Salad Cakes are a new craze in Japan. Mitsuki Moriyasu, a cafe owner and food stylist in Nagoya, is starting a new trend with her vegetable cakes. Called Vegedeco Salad (decorated vegetables), these cakes are meant to be a guilt-free way to indulge in your favorite desserts. The frosting is typically made from tofu, the sponge cake is made from soy powder, eggs, and oil, and the colorful icing is made from all-natural vegetable coloring, from beetroot, carrots, and cabbage. Since Moriyasu’s two sons have food allergies, she decided to get create with her baked goods, which is what led her to make sugar and wheat-free desserts. Thinking of ditching gluten? Here’s what you need to know. (CNN)