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Dr. Oz: Dangerous OTC drugs, Ayurvedic weight loss and Monk fruit diet sweetener

Get new tips from Dr. Oz.
Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images

When it comes to your health, don't assume that all over-the-counter (OTC) medications are safe, says Dr. Mehmet Oz. He revealed the most dangerous OTC drugs, sleep tips, Ayurvedic weight loss advice and Monk fruit diet sweetener suggestions on his Aug. 27 talk show.

When it comes to safety, Dr. Oz warned about OTC medications for pain and sleep such as Tylenol PM, Nyquil and Advil PM. Too much acetaminophen can result in liver damage. Moreover, some people take more than the recommended dosage because they think that they will get a good night's sleep with extra pills.

However, these medications may last for up to 12 hours, causing you to experience grogginess and foggy thinking the next day as you drive to work or go on errands. Instead of regularly taking sleep drugs, try changing your diet.

Dr. Oz suggests lemon balm tea, which has no caffeine. And beware hidden sources of caffeine, such as chocolate, some sodas and energy drinks.

It's not just adults who suffer from sleep problems. A new report revealed that middle school and high school students often suffer a sleep deficit that has become an international problem, reported Healio on Aug. 27.

Researchers expressed concern about the increasing use of caffeine in the diets of children and teens. They found that when young people consumed caffeine, they slept fewer hours and were sleepier during the day. The risks of insufficient sleep include weight gain, depression and lack of concentration.

In addition, Dr. Oz tackled the topic of artificial sweeteners. Aspartame (Equal), saccharin (Sweet'n'Low) and sucralose (Splenda) all have potential risks, says Dr. Oz. Instead, he recommends Monk fruit diet sweetener.

A relatively new addition to the sugar substitute aisle, Monk fruit sweetener is natural and contains zero calories. You can use it for cereal, beverages or even cooking.

On the same episode, Dr. Oz discussed Ayurvedic diet tips for weight loss and health. If you suffer frequently from bloating and belly bulge, try sipping warm water during each meal. In addition, consume your largest meal at noon.

Did you know that adding spices to your diet can help with digestive problems? Try ginger, fennel and cumin.

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