10 Facts About Folic Acid

Folic acid is a B vitamin that can help reduce the risk of neural tube defects by as much as 70% if taken before conception. Folate and folic acid are different terms for the same B vitamin. Folate is found naturally in foods and folic acid is the synthetic form of the vitamin found in multivitamins and supplements.

So why is folic acid important?

Here are 10 facts from New York State’s Department of Health:

1. Each year, about 130 babies who are born in New York State have neural tube defects (NTD). Nationwide, there are 4,000 NTD-affected pregnancies each year. NTDs are disorders of the development of the brain and spinal cord. The most common NTD is spina bifida, or opening of the spine. The most serious NTD is anencephaly, failure of the brain to develop.

2. Up to 70% of NTDs can be prevented if all women who can become pregnant consume 0.4 mg/day of folic acid at least a month prior to conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy. Continue reading “10 Facts About Folic Acid”

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Upper Respiratory Infections and Vitamin C

Having just gotten over an upper respiratory infection (URI), this interview with Naama Constantini, MD, DFM, FACSM, Dip. Sport Med. (CASM), by Kirk Hamilton came at a great time. Dr. Constantini discusses the role that the antioxidant vitamin C plays in swimmers with URIs.

Kirk Hamilton: Can you please share with us your educational background and current position?

Naama Constantini: I am a physician and a family and sport medicine specialist. I am the director of the “Hadassah Optimal” Sports Medicine Center, Orthopedic Department, Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center in Jerusalem, Israel. I was the chair of the Medical Committee of the Israeli Olympic Committee for
over 10 years and currently the physician of the Israeli Swimming Association. In addition, I am an active Master competitive swimmer, and a former swimming coach.

KH: What got you interested in studying the role of vitamin C in upper respiratory infections (URI) in adolescent swimmers? Continue reading “Upper Respiratory Infections and Vitamin C”

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Small Business Saturday: November 27

Did you know that for every $100 spent in a local business, 68% of that stays in the community? How about, small businesses employ half of all private sector employees, or that for every year over the last decade 60% to 80% of new jobs were generated by small businesses? Make the most of the first-ever Small Business Saturday(SM) November 27, 2010 – a day to come together in support of small businesses like Village Green Apothecary. The businesses that are the heartbeat of our communities and local economies.

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EBook Excerpt: The Professional Home Audit

Here is the last in our weekly series of excerpts from the EBook, “6 Weeks to a Greener Lifestyle.” See the note at the end of this post for more information. — Paula

Even if you are a seriously dedicated DIY (do it yourself) enthusiast, you are best served in the long-run by hiring a professional to perform a home audit. A well-done audit requires special knowledge and skills, and even some special equipment.

Special recommendation: check with your local utility provider to see what audit services it provides or recommends. Often your local utility will offer a free home audit (mine does). If so, this is a great way to get a start on improving the energy and water efficiency of your home without spending a dime out-of-pocket.

A high-quality auditor will visit the location and do a complete and formal inspection of the property. They might request utility bills from the previous year, and they will assess each and every system and appliance in the home. Their goal will be to show the homeowner how to reduce the costs permanently while also making the home much greener. Remember, this is not some sort of mold or toxin inspection, or some other form of home inspection, for that matter. It is simply an energy usage assessment, which will involve a look at everything from doors and windows to light bulbs and caulking. Continue reading “EBook Excerpt: The Professional Home Audit”

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Interesting Fact About Pumpkin Pies!

A study published in Medical Aspects of Human Sexuality (Williams and Wilkins, 1975) showed that the smell of pumpkin pie aroused men.

“Maybe the odors acted to reduce anxiety,” said Dr. Alan Hirsch, director of Chicago’s Smell and Taste Treatment Center. “By reducing anxiety, it acted to reduce inhibitions.”

Something to think about when you are passing the pumpkin pie!

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Our Bloggers

  • Paula Gallagher
    Paula Gallagher
    Paula is a highly qualified and experienced nutrition counselor on the staff at Village Green.
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  • Margo Gladding
    Margo Gladding
    Margo's impressive knowledge base is the result of a unique blend of educational and professional experience.
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  • Dr. Neal Barnard
    Dr. Neal Barnard
    Dr. Barnard leads programs advocating for preventive medicine, good nutrition, and higher ethical standards in research.
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  • Joseph Pizzorno
    Dr. Joseph Pizzorno
    Dr. Joseph Pizzorno, ND is a pioneer of integrative medicine and a leading authority on science-based natural medicine.
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  • Debi Silber
    Debi Silber
    Debi is a registered dietitian with a master’s degree in nutrition, a personal trainer, and whole health coach.
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  • Teri Cochrane
    Teri Cochrane
    Teri is a is a Certified Coach Practitioner with extensive certifications and experience in holistic medicinal practices.
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  • Dr. Rav Ivker
    Dr. Rav Ivker
    Dr. Rav Ivker is a holistic family physician, health educator, and best-selling author.
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  • Susan Levin
    Susan Levin
    Susan writes about the connection between plant-based diets and a reduced risk of chronic diseases.
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  • Rob Brown
    Dr. Rob Brown
    Dr. Brown's blended perspective of healthcare includes a deeply rooted passion for wellness and spiritual exploration.
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November 2010