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Christmas Special December 23rd

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Issue Home December 23, 2009 Site Home

100 Years Ago
From the Desk of the D.A.
The Healthy Geezer
Library Chitchat
Rock Doc Break The Glass, Douse The Flames
What’s Bugging You?
Dear Dolly
Earth Talk
Barnes-Kasson Corner

100 Years Ago

CANDY PARLOR: W. T. Morgan Co’s Candy Parlor offers a very fine selected stock of candy for Xmas at the lowest possible prices on clear toys, baby mixture, cut rock, mixed Lyon, San Blas coconut, chocolate chips, chocolate dates, Ideal chocolate drops, Dutchess bon bons, fancy mixture, pop corn loose, pop corn balls and other specialties. Also a complete line of nuts, oranges, figs, grapes, salad dressing, chila sauce, olives, pickles, etc.

GREAT BEND: A daring robbery occurred here Tuesday evening shortly after eight o’clock by which crafty thieves secured about $300 in cash and stamps from the postoffice. Although the robbery was discovered almost immediately, as no suspicions were aroused against anyone, the criminal or criminals have disappeared as completely as they always do in mystifying detective stories. Postmaster Fred Trowbridge, just prior to closing the office for the night, placed the money, about $100 with nearly double that amount in postage stamps, in a tin box and laid it on a shelf near which was burning an electric light. He then locked the door and went across the street, bought a cigar, and returned ten minutes later. A window in the front of the building near the main entrance, he noticed, had been broken out, and on going inside the box was discovered missing.

HALLSTEAD: Giles M. Carpenter has taken the agency for the Ford automobile. Mr. Carpenter has run a Ford the past year and understands its operation in a way that can be learned only through experience and longs runs. Being an enthusiast, he should make a good salesman. As a pointer we would advise him to try Editor Ira A. Thomas, of the “Herald.” It is rumored that Br’er Thomas has the auto fever and they say there is only one cure for it - to buy one.

AUBURN FOUR CORNERS: The death of Mrs. Jane Bennett occurred on Saturday at the home of her daughter-in-law, Mrs. Wm. Bennett, at Lynn. The funeral was held on Tuesday from the Baptist church in this place, of which she had been a member for nearly 75 years, Rev. Downing officiating. Interment in the Bunnell cemetery. Mrs. Bennett was the oldest person in this community, having attaining the age of 96 years. Aside from her hearing she retained her faculties, being able to oversee her farm work and drive her own horse until within the past two or three years. She is survived by four sons and two daughters. ALSO In Auburn Center Mrs. John Schoonmaker won third prize in the bread contest, which entitled her to a sack of flour.

SUSQUEHANNA: Clarence Matthews, of Gibson, employed for a fortnight at the Erie shops, and not familiar with the surroundings, fell into a vat of lye at the shops on Thursday morning of last week. The young man was standing on the edge of the vat, which is filled with a strong solution of lye and used in removing grease and oil from portions of the machinery. He stumbled into the vat, the lye burning him badly from the waist line down, and hands and arms were also burned. Fellow employees pulled him out and he was hustled to the Barnes Memorial Hospital where the burns were dressed. He is now in a fair way to permanently and rapidly recovering.

MIDDLETOWN: Sister Mary Veronica, of Kingston, Jamaica, spent Saturday as a guest of friends. She is a native of Susquehanna county, and with her sister, Sister Mary Magdalena, of Allegheny, NY, they are visiting their brother Daniel S. Murphy here. Sister Veronica has been a member of the Franciscan Order for forty years, thirty of which have been spent in Jamaica. She is highly cultured and is a teacher in French, German and Latin. Two years ago, when the terrible earthquake shook Kingston, the fine property of the Franciscans was destroyed and Sister Veronica was of the number to experience a miraculous escape.

ELK LAKE: The gale of Dec. 13, evening, wrecked the shed back of the M. E. church here. It was lifted up and thrown over the fence into Mr. Cart’s field. ALSO The lake froze over Dec. 15 and the young people are enjoying the skating.

SPRINGVILLE: E. R. Thomas has his house finished and is getting settled this week. He has one of the best arranged and nicest finished kitchens in this vicinity.

SOUTH NEW MILFORD: Farmers in this vicinity are selling their cattle as fast as possible. Hay and water are scarce.

HERRICK CENTRE: The boys are enjoying the fine coasting on Herrick Hill.

DIMOCK: C. C. Mills and daughter, Isa, of Dimock, proprietors of the “Mills House,” have an advertisement in another column today, announcing that they are now prepared to entertain the traveling public. It will be a temperance hotel.

FRANKLIN TWP.: Mrs. J. E. Webb celebrated her 90th birthday, Nov. 25. There were 30 present, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren and she received 75 beautiful postals.

MONTROSE: Messrs Philip Allen and Carlton Shafer are endeavoring to organize a basket ball team here. An initiatory game between two teams made up of local players will be played at the Palace Rink, Christmas afternoon, commencing at 2:30 o’clock. The admission will be 10 cents. After the game, which occupies a period of about 40 minutes, roller skating will be in order. Skates $1.50.

NEWS BRIEFS: The interests of Lackawanna county have at last united and the improved highway from the Luzerne line to the Susquehanna county line is to be built. The road is to be 30 ft. wide, of macadam, and will cost $369,000. ALSO Ice 10” thick has frozen on the neighboring lakes and ponds. Preparations are being made to commence cutting at Heart Lake next week, and work will also be started soon at Lake Montrose and Post’s pond. At the latter place arrangements have been made so that four [railroad] cars can be loaded at the same time, permitting rapid progress, as previously only one could be loaded readily at a time. ALSO - Rubber goods, which sold last year at $1.07, now bring $2.15. The rise in price is due to increase in demand. Automobile tires, rubber carpets, mats, etc., consume great quantities of the product, and it is getting scarce. ALSO - While doing chores after dark, make it a rule never to set the lantern down on the barn floor. Hang it up where it will not be knocked over. It is an awful thing to have the barn burn up. By the way, a harness snap suspended from the ceiling by a bit of old pump chain is a good thing to hang the lantern on. Have it just above the reach of your head.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS! From the Board, Staff and Volunteers of the Susquehanna County Historical Society and Free Library Association and Branches.

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From the Desk of the D.A.
By District Attorney Jason J. Legg

Last Thursday, I was saddened when I read the news that Luzerne County had agreed to remove a Nativity scene and a menorah from its courthouse lawn in order to avoid a legal battle with the ACLU. According to reports, Luzerne County did not have the financial means to get into a big court battle with America’s biggest litigation bully. Given what has transpired in Luzerne County over the past year, I suppose it is not surprising that the county bowed to the legal pressure.

The complaining party was a young atheist student attending King’s College. In an interview with a local paper, he contended that he was not attacking any religion, and that it was “our duty as American citizens to stay true to the Constitution.” I agree that Americans should defend the Constitution, but disagree with his interpretation of it. I would suggest that the young man read a little history before he decides that the Constitution creates an absolute bar of any religious icons on government property. Even if he was not interested in reading, a tour of the monuments in Washington, D.C., would reveal countless religious references. He could even stop by the Congress and listen to them open a session with a prayer - a practice that dates back to the very first Congress. If he does not want to make the trip to Washington, I would suggest that he simply pull some change or paper currency out of his pocket - it was the government, not private citizens that printed “In God We Trust” on that currency.

This young man, with all of his wisdom and now power, told the paper that he hoped that he could help Luzerne County design next year’s holiday decorations with symbols of “thematic unity.” Apparently, the things that are acceptable include plastic snowmen and wreaths. No mention was made of Santa Clause - and I expect Santa would be unacceptable given his origin as a Christian Saint. Perhaps, Santa’s reindeer are far enough removed from him to be considered “non-religious” symbols of the “holiday” season. The young man never indicated what “holiday” the decorations would commemorate - a question for which there is no good answer.

As I read about Luzerne County losing its Nativity scene, I remembered reading an earlier news report that there had been concern that the White House was not going to display its 18th century Italian Nativity scene, and had intended on celebrating a “non-religious” holiday season. In the end, tradition won out and the Nativity scene went up in the East Reception Room of the White House. So I wonder why the ACLU decided to pick on Luzerne County and not the White House. Well, the answer is fairly simple - bullies pick on weak targets.

After reading the news about Luzerne County, I went home that night and my daughter and I watched Dr. Seuss’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” It was an appropriate ending to a sad day - and I thought a lot about modern day Grinchs in America. They can steal our decorations, they can take Christmas music out of schools, they can demand only “holiday” trees, and, in the end, they can take all of the physical trapping away from us. In the end, Christmas will come regardless of their efforts. Christmas lives in our hearts - not on our trees, lights, decorations or even in Nativity scenes. No matter what they take away from us, come Christmas morning, like the Whos, we will lift our voices up in celebration of the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ.

In Luzerne County, the Whos are already planning to do just that - and there is an attempt to organize a live Nativity scene with citizen volunteers coupled with Christmas caroling on the courthouse lawn. The organizer contends that citizens have a right to assemble peacefully and express their religious beliefs. So, the Grinch may have taken the Nativity statues from Luzerne County, but not the love in their hearts. If the organizers are successful, Luzerne County will have a very special Nativity scene this year - and the Grinch, sitting high atop his perch, will hear them singing and praising God, and wonder why he failed again to stop Christmas from coming. Have a blessed and holy Christmas.

Please submit any questions, concerns, or comments to Susquehanna County District Attorney’s Office, P.O. Box 218, Montrose, Pennsylvania 18801 or at our website or discuss this and all articles at

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The Healthy Geezer
By Fred Cicetti

Q. All I ever hear about the sun is how dangerous it is. But, when I was a kid, my mother used to tell me to get out in the sun and play. Did my mother give me bad advice?

[I’ve devoted a lot of space to the dangers of sun exposure. I believe I owe the sun a couple of columns to make up for this. Here’s the first one.]

Most public health messages have focused on the hazards of too much sun exposure. Ultraviolet (UV) rays, an invisible component of sunlight, can cause skin damage, cataracts, wrinkles, age spots, and skin cancer.

But there is some sunny news about the sun.

Sunlight increases the body’s vitamin D supply. Most cases of vitamin D deficiency are caused by a lack of exposure to the sun.

If you don’t have enough vitamin D, your bones will suffer. In children, vitamin D deficiency causes rickets, best known for creating bowed legs. Low vitamin D levels cause osteoporosis in adults. Osteoporosis is a disorder in which the bones become increasingly porous, brittle, and subject to fracture.

Unlike other essential vitamins, which you must get from food, vitamin D can be synthesized in the skin through a reaction to ultraviolet radiation. How much vitamin D you produce depends upon how many units of ultraviolet light penetrate your skin.

The UV light can be blocked by skin pigment, sunscreen, clothing and body fat.

Dark skin requires about five to six times more solar exposure than pale skin for equivalent amount of vitamin D production.

By the late 1800s, about 9 out of 10 children in industrialized Europe and North America had rickets symptoms. The medical community began promoting sunbathing for rickets. At the same time, doctors found that tuberculosis (TB) responded to sunlight.

Because of the results with rickets and TB, attitudes about the sun changed. Sunlight also became a popular medical treatment for rheumatic disorders, diabetes, gout, chronic ulcers, and wounds. From this, came the expression, “a healthy tan.”

In the 1930s, the U.S. Public Health Service began issuing warnings about sun-related health risks. Subsequently, the hazards of skin cancer from too much sun were researched extensively.

However, too little sun exposure is associated with Hodgkin lymphoma and other cancers of the breast, ovaries, colon, pancreas and prostate. And, while the sun is a risk factor for melanoma - the most dangerous form of skin cancer - there is an increased survival rate in patients with early-stage melanoma who undergo high sun exposure.

Some studies have raised the possibility that vitamin D insufficiency is contributing to many major illnesses. For example, there is evidence that high levels of vitamin D may decrease the risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS).

A recent Swedish study found that sufficient vitamin D in childhood was associated with a lower risk of developing type 1 diabetes.

There is also a connection between vitamin D and metabolic syndrome, a cluster of conditions that increases the risk for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

[In our next column, we’ll discuss other benefits of sunlight and how much sun is enough.]

If you have a question, please write to

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Library Chitchat
By Flo Whittaker

Dear Dolly,

I find myself wandering up and down the toy isles, unable to make a decision about Christmas presents. We don't have room in our home for one more toy. I want to make a memorable Christmas for the kids but I can't walk into their bedrooms or into our family room, without the danger of twisting an ankle on a pile of toys. The kids have 4 grandparents and numerous aunts and uncles. If this continues we're going to need a bigger house. -Angelica

Dear Angelica,

You are describing an affliction commonly called "Toy Overload." This is the perfect time of year to get a handle on the toy clutter and at the same time turn your problem into a blessing for others.

There are two trains of thought on the toy culling process. Some folks feel that any child over age 4 should participate. Other experts feel that the job should be done by the parents when the kids are out of the house. Personally I like the second option.

Have a box or two of trash bags on hand and start the sorting process. Toss any toy that is broken, dirty, or not complete. Even if only one piece is missing, it goes into toss. A second bag (preferably a clear bag) is for toys to be donated. These toys must be in good repair and complete. These are toys your child doesn't play with often, or are not age appropriate. Or maybe they are toys with too many parts. When in doubt, donate - don't keep.

The third and smallest pile is the toys you have room for and are daily play time favorites. Remember you need to have space on the shelves or in the toy box for Christmas presents, so be careful what you keep.

Take the donate bags and put them directly into the trunk of your car to be dropped off at a thrift shop the next time you're on the road. Put the toss bags out of sight to be taken out with the garbage. Replace the "keep" toys on shelves and in the toy box to make sure the space you have will accommodate the toys you kept.

Room to think, imagine and play is a gift you can't find in the toy isle. Kids don't like clutter any more than adults do. The concept of making room for this year’s toys and blessing others with last year’s will catch on with Mom and Dad leading the way.

All Transcript readers are welcome to submit their questions to Dear Dolly at

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Rock Doc The Best Record Keepers
By Dr. E. Kirsten Peters

We Need Some Heat In Here

The recent massive snowstorm that moved from California across to New England certainly got the nation’s attention. While some Americans dealt with snowfall measured in feet rather than inches, my part of the Northwest simply endured temperatures near zero, night after night. (Where I live, we think of ourselves as human weather stripping, nobly protecting states to the south from Canada.) Either way, we all had a moment, I’m sure, to reflect on the fact that a major change in the weather in late fall will mean a major spike in our heating bills in January.

The good news is that for folks who are lively and quick, there are two forms of fuel that can be quite cheap. Both require physical work - loading fuel into a heat stove or furnace. One fuel is geologic, the other merely botanical. Both are filthy, which is kind of glorious if you look at it the way I do (although normal people often view such matters differently). Still, let me run them by you as you consider not just this January’s bills, but those you’ll face again and again in all the winters to come.

Even if you decline to ever depend on these two fuels, the thought of possibly having them in your house may make the utility bills a bit easier to bear. That’s my holiday gift to you.

Here’s the two-part picture I’ll paint:

I have a woodstove in my living room. It’s not my only source of heat (the backup is a natural gas furnace in the basement). But when it’s zero degrees night after night, I burn a lot of wood. Only if the fire burns out, or the stove just cannot “keep up” with the cold, does the furnace kick in. So, quite simply, I keep my natural gas bills down to reasonable levels by increasing the amount of wood I burn.

There are two routes to getting wood cheaply. One is to use our National Forests as a supply source. (In Europe, as I understand it, you can’t just go cutting down trees in the countryside for your own use. We should never forget how lucky we are to have natural resources we can all access in many parts of this country.) The other free supply is begging wood from your more physically fit friends and relations. That’s my sneaky approach - which works only because those around me are truly decent and kind souls who want to help an old lady with arthritic knees.

The second cheap source of heat doesn’t require so much physical fitness because it can, depending where you live, arrive at your doorstep by a delivery truck. It is the old fuel of King Coal. Don’t laugh: coal keeps many an Amish home warm today, and it’s used by a few other sturdy citizens in several parts of the country.

If you have access to coal and can meet your local codes, coal burning in modern coal furnaces can be a good way to beat the high cost of heating a home. Coal is cheap heat. And heating with coal is much easier in terms of physical labor than heating with wood, principally because coal comes in smaller pieces than trees do.

If you seriously consider coal for heating your home - as I did before I put in my woodstove - check out the availability of anthracite coal near you. Anthracite is hard, high-grade coal mined in parts of Appalachia. It’s not so filthy to handle, like Midwestern and Western soft coal. It’s shiny, a bit like graphite (the “lead” in a pencil).

Anthracite is coal that Mother Nature has (very kindly) heated for us over long pieces of geologic time. The “heat treatment” drives out impurities that we don’t want, so anthracite becomes much better fuel than soft coal. Anthracite burns hot and long - a clear positive when it’s zero outside.

My pine wood pile (plus labor) kept my place warm during the week-long cold snap - but only just barely. A few bags of anthracite and a sturdier coal stove would have been welcome. Perhaps I should have mentioned that to Santa.

Dr. E. Kirsten Peters is a native of the rural Northwest, but was trained as a geologist at Princeton and Harvard. Questions about science for future Rock Docs can be sent to This column is a service of the College of Sciences at Washington State University.

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What’s Bugging You?
By Stuart W. Slocum

No What's Bugging You This Week

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Dear Dolly,

Dear Dolly,

We have a large extended family. In the past we have all exchanged gifts. Even without the depressed economy, the cost and time involved has become a burden over the past few years. How can I get this spending under control and not feel like the Grinch? -Mandy

Dear Mandy,

Coming in under budget is on every one’s wish list this year for the holidays. Gift giving has become a guilt trip perpetuated by the large advertising budgets of big retail stores nationwide. Overspending is at epidemic proportions. Many Americans are still, "celebrating" their holiday excess, on a monthly basis, well into bathing suit season. Your desire to put a stop to this drain shows wisdom and foresight.

The tradition of picking names and gifting to just one person in the family is a reasonable solution. As a group, decided on a dollar amount not to be exceeded. Because you are shopping for and buying only one gift, the amount can be higher than what you would have spent if you were buying individual gifts for everyone. Some families exempt kids under 10 from the "pot." Be sure to put a limit of, say no more than $10.00 per child.

Another budget friendly way to gift, is to make an individual monetary donation to a charity, in each family member’s name. The organization will send each a thank you note. You will give them a card at gift exchange time with a little information about the charity. Choose the charity based on that person’s interests. The amount of the gift should not be mentioned.

You have raised an important issue. Changing family tradition is not an easy step. You may be the first to insist on the change, but don't for a minute think that others haven't thought about it. This is a gift that will keep on giving peace of mind, less stress and a better night’s sleep. And that my friend, is truly, "priceless."

All Transcript readers are welcome to submit their questions to Dear Dolly at

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From the Editors of E/The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that military sonar exercises actually kill marine wildlife?

Unfortunately for many whales, dolphins and other marine life, the use of underwater sonar (short for sound navigation and ranging) can lead to injury and even death. Sonar systems - first developed by the U.S. Navy to detect enemy submarines - generate slow-rolling sound waves topping out at around 235 decibels; the world’s loudest rock bands top out at only 130. These sound waves can travel for hundreds of miles under water, and can retain an intensity of 140 decibels as far as 300 miles from their source.

These rolling walls of noise are no doubt too much for some marine wildlife. While little is known about any direct physiological effects of sonar waves on marine species, evidence shows that whales will swim hundreds of miles, rapidly change their depth (sometime leading to bleeding from the eyes and ears), and even beach themselves to get away from the sounds of sonar.

In January 2005, 34 whales of three different species became stranded and died along North Carolina’s Outer Banks during nearby offshore Navy sonar training. Other sad examples around the coast of the U.S. and elsewhere abound, notably in recent years with more sonar testing going on than ever before. According to the nonprofit Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), which has campaigned vigorously to ban use of the technology in waters rich in marine wildlife, recent cases of whale strandings likely represent a small fraction of sonar’s toll, given that severely injured animals rarely make it to shore.

In 2003, NRDC spearheaded a successful lawsuit against the Navy to restrict the use of low-frequency sonar off the coast of California. Two years later a coalition of green groups led by NRDC and including the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), the League for Coastal Protection, Cetacean Society International, and Ocean Futures Society upped the ante, asking the federal courts to also restrict testing of more intense, harmful and far ranging mid-frequency types of sonar off Southern California’s coastline.

In filing their brief, the groups cited Navy documents which estimated that such testing would kill some 170,000 marine mammals and cause permanent injury to more than 500 whales, not to mention temporary deafness for at least 8,000 others. Coalition lawyers argued that the Navy’s testing was in violation of the National Environmental Policy Act, the Marine Mammal Protection Act and the Endangered Species Act.

Two lower courts upheld NRDC’s claims, but the Supreme Court ruled that the Navy should be allowed to continue the use of some mid-frequency sonar testing for the sake of national security. “The decision places marine mammals at greater risk of serious and needless harm,” says NRDC’s Joel Reynolds.

Environmental groups are still fighting the battle against the sonar, lobbying the government to curtail testing, at least during peacetime, or to at least ramp up testing gradually to give marine wildlife a better chance to flee affected areas. “The U.S. Navy could use a number of proven methods to avoid harming whales when testing mid-frequency sonar,” reports IFAW’s Fred O'Regan. “Protecting whales and preserving national security are not mutually exclusive.”


Dear EarthTalk: How does the microwave compare in energy use, say, to using a gas or electric stove burner to heat water for a cup of tea?

The short answer is that it depends upon several variables, including the price of electricity versus gas, and the relative efficiency of the appliances involved. Typically, though, a microwave would be slightly more efficient at heating water than the flame on a gas stove, and should use up a little less energy. The reason: The microwave’s heat waves are focused on the liquid (or food) inside, not on heating the air or container around it, meaning that most if not all of the energy generated is used to make your water ready.

Given this logic, it is hard to believe that a burner element on an electric stovetop would be any better, but an analysis by Home Energy Magazine found otherwise. The magazine’s researchers discovered that an electric burner uses about 25 percent less electricity than a microwave in boiling a cup of water.

That said, the difference in energy saved by using one method over another is negligible: Choosing the most efficient process might save a heavy tea drinker a dollar or so a year. “You’d save more energy over the year by replacing one light bulb with a CFL [compact fluorescent lightbulb] or turning off the air conditioner for an hour - not an hour a day, one hour at some point over the whole year,” says consumer advocate Michael Bluejay.

Although a microwave may not save much energy or money over a stove burner when heating water, it can be much more energy-efficient than a traditional full-size oven when it comes to cooking food. For starters, because their heat waves are concentrated on the food, microwaves cook and heat much faster than traditional ovens. According to the federal government’s Energy Star program, which rates appliances based on their energy-efficiency, cooking or re-heating small portions of food in the microwave can save as much as 80 percent of the energy used to cook or warm them up in the oven.

The website reports that there are other things you can do to optimize your energy efficiency around the kitchen when cooking. For starters, make sure to keep the inside surfaces of your microwave oven clean so as to maximize the amount of energy reflected toward your food. On a gas stovetop, make sure the flame is fully below the cookware; likewise, on an electric stovetop, make sure the pan or kettle completely covers the heating element to minimize wasted heat. Also, use the appropriate size pan for the job at hand, as smaller pans are cheaper and more energy-efficient to heat up.

Despite these tips for cooking greener, Bluejay reiterates that most of us will hardly put a dent in our overall energy use just by choosing one appliance over another. According to his analysis, for someone who bakes three hours a week the cheapest cooking method saves only an estimated $2.06/month compared to the most expensive method.

“Focusing on cooking methods is not the way to save electricity [at home],” says Bluejay. “You should look at heating, cooling, lighting and laundry instead.”

CONTACTS: Home Energy Magazine,; Treehugger,; Michael Bluejay,

Send Your Environmental Questions To: EarthTalk, P.O. Box 5098, Westport, CT 06881; Read past columns at:

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Barnes-Kasson Corner
By Cara Sepcoskiw

National Fruits & Veggies Week November 29 - December 5

Barnes-Kasson Hospital is observing National Fruits and Veggies Week November 29 - December 5. We all know that fruits and vegetables are good for you, but did you know that they are critical for promoting a healthy body? Fruits and vegetables contain essential vitamins, fiber, and minerals, that may help protect the human body from chronic diseases.

Not only can eating fruits and vegetables help limit your risk of disease, it also can help lead to weight loss. Vegetables and fruit are low in calories, and if they are replaced with fatty foods, you will naturally loose weight. But eating fruits and vegetables on top of what you already eat will make you gain weight. While they may be low in calories, fruits and vegetables still contain calories. So if someone was to still eat fatty foods, not exercise and add fruits and vegetables, they would gain weight due to the increase in their food intake. The key is to substitute high calorie fatty foods for lower calorie vegetables and fruits.

Years ago, it was recommended that everyone received five servings of veggies, but new research has proven that is not the case. Because everybody is different, everybody needs a different amount of servings per day. For example, an average height, healthy weight female would need only 2.5 servings, whereas an average healthy weight male would need 3.5.

It is encouraged that adults get their recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, but adolescents and children need to as well. It is essential for a healthy diet to eat fruits and veggies during the growing years. Keeping your children on a healthy diet can sometimes be confusing and challenging, especially since most children are not too fond of eating vegetables or fruit. To keep your entire family healthy, try slowly adding fruits and veggies in your family’s diet. Try replacing candy with veggies in your children’s lunch boxes or when you snack at work. To make fruit seem more appealing, try adding it to basic things, like breakfast cereal.

Many schools are now participating in P.A.C.K., a program designed to encourage parents to pack healthier food options in their children’s lunch boxes. This program also helps fuel kids want for fruits and veggies by making them be more appealing and fun. P.A.C.K works by making a game and competition out of eating the necessary servings each child needs. One way is by calling certain weeks, “purple week” or “red week.” During these weeks children have to bring a fruit or veggie of that color to school for lunch. Children who have participated in this program claim that it evolved into a competition between classmates to see who could bring in the biggest or most unusual fruit or veggie.

Many children, especially teenagers, are now taking the jump toward vegetarianism. This choice has been causing a sense of fear among parents. Many are concerned that their children will become malnourished, or not intake the necessary vitamins needed for growth. The truth is however, that a vegetarian diet is a very healthy choice, but one should always consult with their doctor before changing their diet drastically.

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