Healthy Choices Del-finders for drugs

Del-finders for drugs

A bunch of apps promise to help you find the best prices on medications. To find out whether they really work, ShopSmart tried four of them – GoodRx, LowestMed, Mobile Rx Card, and Pocket Doctor – to price a month’s supply of the cholesterol-lowering drug Lipitor (40 milligrams and its generic equivalent, atorvastatin, using a ZIP code near their offices in Yonkers, N.Y. They also tested whether the app would tap into generic discount plans by pricing another cholesterol drug pravastatin (Pravachol and generic). And they priced Advil and its generic, ibuprofen, GoodRx worked well, but they suggest that you skip the other three. Here’s why.

Try GoodRx

Prices and devices Free for iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad. This app was best at finding the lowest pirces in stores and online. For example, when they checked Lipitor, they got prices ranging from $134.98 to $157.80 for 30 pills. Ibuprofen prices ranged from $5.67 to $10.15 for 90 pills. The app also offers money-saving tips, such as joining the Lipitor For You program, a $4 co-pay deal.

SKIP Lowest Med

This much-hyped app didn’t find online prices or common drugs like Pravachol and Advil.

SKIP Mobile Rx Card

It only lists prices at brick-and-mortar stores. And the app’s search found certain providers that always topped the list, even though they didn’t always have the lowest prices.

SKIP Pocket Doctor

The pricing tool is hard to find (it’s listed under “search”, which is unclear to new users). The results aren’t’ in order, plus reconfiguring “low to high” didn’t fix it.

High-risk heels

You know that stilettos aren’t great for your feet. Well, new research suggests that the damage from frequently wearing heels may be felt even after the heels come off. The study looked at nine women who wore heels (2 inches or higher) for 40 hours or more every week for at least two years, and 10 women who wore heels for less than 10 hours each week. The daily heels group actually had shorter calf muscles than the other women, and even when barefoot they walked differently. That could raise the risk of injury, like sprains and fractures. So mix it up; buy some flats and give your feet regular breaks from heels.

How to eat sweets and lose weight

You now have permission to eat dessert with breakfast! A small study found that eating a big breakfast plus a small sweet treat might help overweight people shed pounds – and sweetest of all, keep off those pounds. In the study, researchers divided 144 obese men and women into two groups. Everyone ate the same number of calories each day – 1,400 for women and 1,600 for men. One group had a low-carb breakfast, and the other had a high-carb breakfast with protein as well as chocolate, cookies, or ice cream. The low-carb group ate 300 more calories at dinner.

Both groups lost about 30 pounds over four months. But here’s the big difference: After eight months, the small breakfast group regained almost 26 pounds, but the other group lost an additional 15 pounds. They also had much lower levels of ghrelin, an appetite-stimulating hormone, plus they reported fewer cravings for sweets, fats, carbs, and fast foods. So satisfying your sweet tooth early just might be good for you!

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