DEAR DR. ROACH: I have read that dietary potassium is very important in reducing heart disease risk, along with reducing sodium. I use a potassium-based salt replacement at home. Is there a maximum amount I should use? Why don’t restaurants offer salt substitutes for people who want to reduce sodium and heart risk? — T.S.

ANSWER: I think you are on to something here, although there are some concerns. Most people aren’t using salt substitutes simply because they don’t know salt substitutes exist or that they have the potential to reduce heart attack and stroke.

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DEAR DR. ROACH: I’m a 74-year-old woman with good cholesterol numbers and normal blood pressure. I’ve exercised regularly since I was 17 (that’s 57 years), and weigh 98 pounds. I have no history of heart attack or stroke. Still, my doctor is giving me a strong sales pitch to take a statin wi…

Every year Edmunds’ experts put their heads together to determine the best new vehicles on sale. Spread across six categories, the annual Edmunds Top Rated Awards are given to the cars, trucks and SUVs that rank at the top of their class according to Edmunds’ vehicle testing program.

Q: We own a 2013 MDX Acura with 46,000 miles on it. We recently received a letter from Acura, Warranty Extension stating that the engine oil consumption exceeds client expectations. The original coverage is six years/70,000 miles. They’ve just extended it to eight years/125,000 miles, whiche…

Once upon a time, Chevy’s Blazer was a full-size 4x4 — this was before there were “SUVs” — and it came standard with a V8 engine. It has since gotten smaller — and it’s now a crossover.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY for Thursday, Jan. 26, 2023 — You have an air of authority that makes you an excellent leader. You are decisive, honest and down to earth. You speak your mind. This is a year of learning and teaching. You might renew your spiritual and religious beliefs as well. Explore new id…

Q: Recently, I was told by two repair shops that I needed to replace the original catalytic converter on my 2005 Honda Accord coupe. The Honda dealer where I purchased the car recommended a certain shop because a particular mechanic working there might be able to save the old one with weldin…

“Life is full of change and uncertainty. We know this. We experience it on a daily basis.”

HAPPY BIRTHDAY for Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023 — You have a sense of destiny and purpose. You are friendly and love to debate. You are hardworking, especially for the good of others. You value your personal freedom. You are often a trendsetter. Service to others is your theme this year. Take ca…

DEAR DR. ROACH: I have read that dietary potassium is very important in reducing heart disease risk, along with reducing sodium. I use a potassium-based salt replacement at home. Is there a maximum amount I should use? Why don’t restaurants offer salt substitutes for people who want to reduc…

Dear Savvy Senior, Can you recommend some good reacher-grabber tools for seniors with back or hip problems who need help picking things up off the ground? I bought a cheap one a few months ago that doesn’t work very well but would like to find one that does. Bad Back Betty

“The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places.”

HAPPY BIRTHDAY for Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2023 — You are easygoing, warm and friendly with others. By nature, you’re fun-loving, and you enjoy good times. People enjoy your company. This year is a year of change for you, so stay flexible. Make new friends. Be ready to travel and expand your horizons.

Q. What if you try to use good ex-etiquette when you deal with your ex, but she is just ruthless? I mean, things like tells the kids I don’t care about them, makes up that the kids are sick thinking that is an excuse to keep them with her. She will do anything to keep the kids away — and it’…

DEAR DR. ROACH: My question regards the results of my fasting glucose tests for the past couple of years. I am 81 and weigh around 150 pounds. The medications I am taking concern me, with relevance to the A1C levels of my quarterly blood work. My A1C levels have mostly been near mid 5%; last…

“You have to really use your imagination to refresh your daily life.”

HAPPY BIRTHDAY for Monday, Jan. 23, 2023 — You are strong-willed and determined, which allows you to overcome enormous obstacles and challenges. You are also talented, innovative and creative. Whatever you do this year will be the result of hard work. Simplicity is the key to your life this …

By now, you’re probably familiar with the more obvious ways inflation affects your finances. Your money doesn’t go as far at the grocery store, for example. Credit card and other variable-rate debt is getting more expensive as the Federal Reserve raises short-term interest rates to combat in…

DEAR DR. ROACH: I see ads and articles online presenting the harmful effects that cooked oatmeal can have on your gut, specifically causing “leaky gut.” But when I check health websites, oatmeal is practically considered a “superfood.” Where does the truth lie? — J.G.

DEAR DR. ROACH: Would it be possible for you to explain my recent diagnosis of monoclonal gammopathy of uncertain significance (MGUS)? Apparently, 3% to 5% of the population over the age of 50 show this blood abnormality. My last M-Spike result was 0.2 g/dL. — A.M.P.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY for Saturday, Jan. 21, 2023 — You are charismatic. You are enthusiastic, upbeat and friendly with others. You are also a benevolent and caring person who commits yourself to a cause. This year is slower-paced. It’s your chance to rejuvenate yourself, as well as be helpful to o…

HAPPY BIRTHDAY for Friday, Jan. 20, 2023 — You are a sensitive, hardworking realist. You are ambitious and original. You have a distinctive style and a quirky sense of humor. This year is the beginning of a new nine-year cycle for you. Be courageous. Explore new pathways. Open any door! It’s…

DEAR DR. ROACH: I recently had a COVID booster. Not even considering that the vaccine might impact my annual mammogram, I had my mammogram done the day after my vaccine. I had no ill effects from the vaccine. I was not advised against having the mammogram so soon after the vaccine. Because o…

Tesla made the first modern electric cars, beginning about 15 years ago. It also made the first electric cars that weren’t focused on being economical or practical cars — as the first electric cars (like the Baker electrics) were designed to be, some 120 years ago.

“In the depth of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.”