Keep your ticker in mind this Valentines Day!

What better way can you demonstrate your love than by making sure your risk of heart attack and stroke stays low.
Listen in:

Sponsored by the Pharmacy Guild

Think before you drink fizzy drinks

Fizzy sugary drinks don’t just add to the size of your waist but as Macquarie University scientists have identified over 300 proteins that are affected by them. They note that there is evidence that the over-consumption of sugary fizzy drinks leaves you open to some serious health outcomes.

Whilst the occasional soft drink causes no problems the recommendation for good health is to avoid over-consumption. The message is the same for drinking alcohol – think before you drink and if you are thirsty drink water!

Listen in the full story…

I’m Dr John Darcy and this is Health Check brought to you by your community pharmacist. Remember, ask your pharmacist.

Coping with heart failure

We are all living longer but we are sicker and learning that you have heart failure will always be a big worry. There are all sorts of causes failure after a heart attack; because of a crazy rhythm, damaged valves or a sick heart muscle.  Medication will help so will improving your diet, exercising and tracking your symptoms.

Listen in for more practical tips.

For more info go to the Heart Foundation for their fact sheet:

I’m Dr John Darcy and this is Health Check brought to you by your community pharmacist. Remember, ask your pharmacist

Don’t ignore a persistent cough

Have you got a cough that persists? Are you short of breath? You may have COPD or Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. Chances are you have been a smoker. Perhaps you have worked in an industry which has polluted your lung. Either way it doesn’t matter your need diagnosis and treatment.

If you have a concern visit your pharmacist for a risk assessment and have your breathing measured by a simple device called a PIKO 6. Your pharmacist will assess you and, if needed will refer you to a GP for management.

For more information visit

I’m Dr John Darcy and this is Health Check brought to you by your community pharmacist. Remember, ask your pharmacist.

Understanding your Systolic!

Dr John reminds us of the importance of having your blood pressure checked regularly and of knowing your numbers. There are two numbers – on the top is your systolic and on the bottom is your diastolic reading.  The systolic reading is caused by the beating of your heart and if it up you need to get it down! A reading of 120 is ideal, up to 140 is borderline and this could push you down the road to heart disease and stroke. If the reading is over 140 then it definitely needs to be treated!

Listen to Dr John – he recommends that you discuss your heart health with your doctor and also provides some practical steps to reduce your blood pressure. Losing 5kg is a very significant step towards improved heart health as is a health diet.

If you would like to know more about how sensible lifestyle choices will reduce the likelihood of stroke and heart attack go to the Mayo Clinic or follow the discussion go to Dr John D’Arcy on Facebook.

Shape Up Australia


Australia is facing an obesity epidemic, 63% of adults and 25% of children are overweight or obese. Knowing what we’re putting into our bodies is critical if we want to shift the weight and that’s not always easy.

Louise Sylvan is the CEO of the Australian National Preventative Health Agency and she joined us to talk about the steps they’re taking to tackle this massive problem.

Find out more.

The Salt Wars


The Doc spoke to Prof. Bruce Neal from the George Institute for Global Health about the dangers of salt and how much of it is actually in the food we eat.

Salt is probably the number one contributor to high blood pressure and this of course can lead to people suffering heart attacks and strokes. Find out how to avoid salty temptations.


Butter vs Margarine


What do you spread on your toast? Butter or margarine? The debate over which spread is more healthy has been raging for years! About 30 years ago leading research declared margarine to be the healthy option with those who ate butter being at risk of exposing themselves to greater risk of heart disease .

The Heart Foundation and many practitioners declared butter the enemy and it’s only in more recent times that British researchers have found this research to be wrong. They learnt that margarine contained a substance that actually caused far greater risk of heart disease more than butter.

To hear the full butter vs margarine debate, listen here.