Category: The Well

Recipes, quizzes, and more interactive fun to keep you well

Safely Watch the Solar Eclipse


Guest Blogger: Shlomit Schaal, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, UMass Memorial Eye Center

The eclipse is coming. The eclipse is coming.

On Monday, August 21, a total solar eclipse will be visible in the certain areas of the United States for the first time since 1979. It’s been almost 40 years since we’ve been able to see an eclipse here in Massachusetts. Be sure to watch it safely.

Chicken Cacciatore

chicken_cacciatoreJust a few ingredients make this an easy meal for a busy day. This recipe was a winner in our Simply Slow Cookin’ contest. Congratulations to Pam Deveny, Marketing and Communications Department, UMass Memorial Health Care, Worcester, MA

(Serves 8)

4 chicken breasts
1 t salt
Dash of pepper
1 T dried onion flakes
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
4 oz. can mushrooms
28 oz. can whole tomatoes with sauce
1 bay leaf
¼ t thyme
Place all ingredients in slow cooker. Mix. Cook on low for 4 to 6 hours. Serve over pasta or rice.

Scratchy red eyes? Get relief today!

dry eye cartoon imageDo your eyes feel irritated or like something is in them? Are you experiencing redness, burning, excessive tearing or occasional blurry vision? You may have dry eye, a common condition where your eyes do not produce enough tears. According to Shlomit Schaal, MD, PhD, chair of ophthalmology at UMass Memorial Medical Center, about 40 million people in the U.S. have dry eye disease, but 95 percent haven’t been diagnosed or treated. Could you be among them?

What Should You Do? See an Eye Doctor for an Eye Checkup!

Because there are many possible causes of dry eye, an eye doctor will gather your health history to better understand your risk. Some of these causes could be:

  • Medications, such as diuretics or antihistamines
  • Using contact lenses
  • Using two or more glaucoma eye drops
  • Recent LASIK surgery
  • Thyroid dysfunction and the hormonal changes associated with menopause
  • Your work environment, for example, people who use a computer all day long

If your doctor determines that you are at risk for dry eye, based on your symptoms and risk factors, you may undergo state-of-the-art testing to evaluate and understand the underlying reasons for your dry eye. Your eye doctor can then work with you to identify the best treatment plan for your unique needs.

Think you might have dry eye? Let us work with you to find the best course of treatment for you. Schedule your eye health appointment today by calling 855-UMASS-MD (855-862-7763).

5 Yoga Poses to Ease Lower Back Pain

yoga poseBack pain is anything but rare. While it’s not always something worth worrying about, why be in pain if there are simple things you can do to help relieve it? Yoga is a form of exercise that teaches breath control, posture, flexibility and meditation. The benefits come both mentally and physically, and is adaptable for almost any fitness level. Check out these “Five Yoga Poses to Ease Lower Back Pain” from and start stretching and strengthening today.