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Dr. Oz Talks About Whooping Cough Vaccine

Dr. Oz on Whooping Cough, Peanut Allergies, and Cloth Diapers

Most kids turn out all right! That's something Dr. Mehmet Oz says nervous new parents should be reminded of. It's important to let children live! The cardiac surgeon and author, whose latest book You: Raising Your Child (The Owner's Manual From First Breath to First Grade) ($14) is a must read, speaks from experience, as he is also a father of four! But, I recently had the chance to chat with him about hot topics from vaccines to diapering.

LilSugar: Is the threat of whooping cough a huge issue or a highly publicized issue?
Dr. Mehmet Oz: Well, I'm worried about it. These are Victorian era illnesses that we hadn't seen in a long time. My father who is 85 had siblings who died of Whooping cough — these are not rare events in the 20s and 30s. In NYC, there was a huge outbreak of adults and whooping cough, so I got vaccinated because I'm around patients a lot, and I don't want to give them something that could potentially be lethal to them if they were getting heart surgery. I think it also makes sense for children.

My wife and I were very cautious about vaccines. Lisa is very skeptical of a lot of the information that is in support of vaccines. I tend to believe it because it's my cultural background — to look at the information and tend to trust it, but there's schisms within families like mine (let alone in society). But, I do think that if you make sure your child is healthy when they get the vaccine, keep them nutritionally up-to-date, and keep them sleeping well when they get the vaccine, they will tolerate the inflammatory condition which is caused by a vaccine because there will be some inflammation around it. The majority of kids tolerate vaccines well, and for the majority of their life (if not their entire life), they are then immune from an illness that could be life-threatening. It turns out that whooping cough vaccine does not give you life-long immunity for a lot of people, which is why you have to get revaccinated. Certainly as a child, I would get vaccinated; that's not one of these new color vaccines that people moan and groan about. These are old time vaccines that have been in use before I was born (and I'm 50) with a pretty good track record.


To see Dr. Oz's comments on peanut allergies and the cloth versus disposable diaper debate,


LS: Why are peanut allergies so prevalent now? Is there anything an expectant mother can do to prevent her child from getting a peanut allergy?
MO: There are more peanut allergies now. We think part of it might be because peanut oil is found in so much stuff. I'd be cautious as a mom eating peanuts for concern that you might create some awkward inter-uterine response, but the bigger issue now when kids are young is to let them eat it by itself until you are sure they don't have an issue, because its cause is an immune weakness in the gut — that is really where the reaction happens. And, I'm unaware of a solution for that. I don't know why it's so common, but it has increased a lot.

LS: Are cloth diapers better?
MO: We had this debate in my house, and my wife said the amount of chemicals used to clean the cloth diapers was the same as the headache of having landfills filled (with the disposable diapers). I don't have an answer. I don't think one is better than the other. You could let the kid run around naked, and I guess that's the best option I gather (laughs).

Check out other portions of our interview with Dr. Oz here!

Image Source: Getty
Join The Conversation
13moons 13moons 6 years
I find usually that Dr Oz is good at a variety of topics, stays abreast of current medical issues and most importantly, is able to discuss these things with lay people on a level that makes sense. But here, he is being to simple on subjects that are quite complex, such as whooping cough and allergies. As for the cloth diapers. He really should have said they knew NOTHING about them, because I think his wife is referring to prefolds and a diaper service. The diaper services have to use bleach to "sterilize" them since they go from one baby to another to another to another. NO ONE that uses diapers in the house has to go to those lengths and therefore "chemicals" are not used at all for cloth diapers. Rinse on cold. Wash on Hot. Rinse on cold. Detergent: as free of anything as you can find. No enzymes, no fragrance, no nothing - even if its natural and biodegradable it still isn't necessarily good for the diaper fabric, so cloth diaper users view their detergent choice as a religion practically. On this, he should have pleaded the fifth.
Carri Carri 6 years
I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who's been less than impressed with his so called "advice". I don't claim to be an expert, but that's the difference between he and I.
wazzabubba wazzabubba 6 years
As an allergist, I find his comment about food allergy to be COMPLETELY misleading. Peanut allergy is toward the peanut protein antigen and has NOTHING to do with prevalence of peanut oils. I found it interesting that he wrote a book about children. Isn't he a cardiothoracic surgeon? There's a reason why all the subspecialties train for so many years. I wouldn't go to a dermatologist for gallbladder surgery and I would not go to Dr. Oz for the "advice" he has about children. In fact, the fact that he's touting his opinions as expert advice is irresponsible.
katialoves katialoves 6 years
i am not surprised that he sneakily does not answer the diaper question. of course cloth diapers are better for babies' health than plastics and unregulated chemicals. but as a popular tv personality he knows better than to say that as it could offend sponsors and viewers. so he doesn't touch on the health side (even though he has a show about health!) and just gives a random piece of info on the environmental side. not to be rude but here's some random info thats probably more helpful than his: if you want to save a lot of money, go with cloth and use cheap standard chemical detergents to clean them. if you want to do the best thing for your baby's health, go with cloth and gentle cleaners or those pricey but health/eco conscious new disposables.
MissSushi MissSushi 6 years
Whooping cough, not whopping? either way, it's pertussis. uh... just another person chiming in without actual knowledge of cloth diapers. It would have been better to just say he wasn't very knowledgeable on them then give secondhand info. You use such a fraction of chemical free or cloth diaper free detergent, like half a teaspoon or so depending on the type, and they get soaked and rinsed usually. There are also the cost benefits, as well as not filling a garbage can every other day.
Carri Carri 6 years
Chemicals? Don't you just wash them in the washing machine? You don't have to get a diaper service. I've been reading all of the Dr. Oz posts the last few days, and it seems that he and I have totally different opinions.
kpd1981 kpd1981 6 years
I'm not sure what chemicals she is referring to, but I don't use any chemicals to clean our cloth diapers. We use water and an all natural detergent, free of any chemicals. I'm not going to sit here and tell anyone cloth is better than disposables, because it's not for everyone. But we use cloth and think it is an option that everyone should consider. Don't knock it until you have done the research. I guarantee that the majority of non-cloth users are basing their opinions on incorrect information.
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