Excerpts from HUNGRY

A Bread Story of Love and Betrayal

Photo by Bruno Thethe on Unsplash

There was a time when bread was my favorite food. As a kid, I would scramble out of bed early Sunday mornings to join my mom in the kitchen. She made bread by hand, heating water, then pouring a tablespoon of dried yeast and enough sugar to make it froth to life. Depending on the day, she would add salt, olive oil, spices, nuts, dried fruit, and enough flour to knead the mass into a warm boule. The kneading was my favorite part. I loved pushing the dough into its edges, feeling the…


Covid-19

We want our lives to go back to normal, but if we don’t hold onto some of the changes we’ve made, things could get worse than before the pandemic.

Photo by Patrick Hendry on Unsplash

Living through the pandemic has had a major impact on the way we live. In addition to the tragedy of lost lives and health, adjusting our behavior has also had its challenges. If social distancing and mask-wearing hasn’t been hard enough, restrictions on travel, school, and visiting loved ones have been downright heartbreaking. While these health protocols–along with vaccinations–have been largely responsible for squashing transmission of Covid-19, they have also caused emotional trauma that has driven the rates of depression, drug use, and deaths due to opioid overdose to new peaks. But there is a flip side to these limitations…


Excerpts from HUNGRY

Photo by Olivier Bergeron on Unsplash

They say you are what you eat, but we are often fed lies. The food we are served at restaurants and in grocery stores isn’t always what it claims to be. Sometimes it’s just a tiny forgery, like the green-tinted horseradish standing in for wasabi on your sushi platter or the gas-infused oil labeled “truffle” you pour all over your pizza. We go along with it because we can’t afford the hefty price tag of the real thing. No harm done.

The tale’s a little taller for other food. The most obvious fraud is fish. More often than not, the…


Before the pandemic, I had been in practice as an ear, nose, and throat doctor in Manhattan for nearly 17 years. Last spring, I was seeing about 125 patients a week, COVID-19 patients along with everyone else. March 17, 2020, was my last full day in the office — I had no idea it would be my last. Like so many in New York, in the world, “the last day” would become permanent. I shifted to telemedicine until the illnesses waned and the calls stopped. The majority of my patients, many of whom worked on Broadway, fled the city. With…


Excerpts from HUNGRY

Each day is like pie, with immense possibility, sealed in a golden epidermis.

Photo by Valeria Boltneva from Pexels

I often think about pie. Not in terms of idioms, like that “shoot for the pie in the sky” nonsense or how something can taste as sweet as pie. I consider few people, save the odd toddler, to be cutie pies. And while I often wish jabbering idiots would just shut their pie holes, let’s face it–nothing is as easy as pie, because pie is really hard to make.

It used to be, back in medieval times, that pies were just a way to cook meat stew over an open flame without a pot. The crust was nothing more than…


‘An infection that starts out as an epidemic or pandemic will eventually do one of two things’

Image: Pool/Getty Images

Last February, President Trump famously announced that the coronavirus was going to disappear. “One day — it’s like a miracle — it will disappear.” Now, nearly eight months after that pronouncement, we are facing surging infection rates across the country, with cases rising nationally from 35,000 a day last September to more than 250,000 a day in January. It is time to face facts: This disease isn’t going anywhere. But the good news is that vaccinations are underway and we have been here before with infectious disease.

As the pandemic trudges on, in some regions, the SARS-CoV-2 virus may already…


A New York ear, nose, and throat doctor on the prospect of hormone therapy

Image: chaofann/Getty Images

As an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) doctor in private practice in Manhattan, I’ve been considering — as have other doctors and researchers — a way to fight Covid-19 that may have been sitting under our noses all along.

Having felt the fear in the hundreds of Covid-19 patients I have treated, I started reading every study possible to try and make sense of this disease. I’ve noticed a common thread that is only beginning to get attention.

Though it’s true we don’t have a cure or a surefire way to prevent people from getting the virus, I wonder if…

Linda Dahl, MD

Otolaryngologist. Author of Tooth and Nail:The Making of a Female Fight Doctor & Better Breastfeeding, http://dolcenter.net @drlindadahl

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