Health Genie Articles

May's Health Genie: Probiotics

Dear Health Genie,

I recently purchased an acidophilus probiotic supplement from the refrigerator in the wellness department. I assume I am supposed to refrigerate it at home. If warm temperatures are not good for the viability of the probiotic bacteria, then how is it going to live inside my GI tract?

Thanks
Probiotic Pete

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June's Health Genie In-Depth: Nutritional & Botanical Support for Sufferers of Seasonal Allergies

By Heather Irvine, Wellness Buyer

Note:The informational in this article is not meant to be an exhaustive list and is based on the traditional uses of plants. Statements about the research have been simplified. This article is meant for informational purposes and it is not meant as a substitute for proper medical advice. Please consult with your medical practitioner before using any type of remedy, herbal or otherwise.

Many people suffer from seasonal allergies. Allergy symptoms occur when an individual’s respiratory and immune system are reactive to a particular foreign substance whether or not it is otherwise harmful. Below are some popular approaches to alternative allergy relief. While most of these approaches are not recognized by the FDA as therapeutic treatments for allergies, all have a long history of use and current research that supports this information. A few have potential negative interactions with medications; you should always check with your medical practitioner before starting a new remedy.

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April's Health Genie: Sunscreen

Dear Health Genie,

Every year I buy several different sunscreens thinking one may be better than the other. Even though I work outside, I end up with extra tubes left at the end of the summer. Some sunscreen has irritated my face but I didn’t have any way of knowing this until I’d purchased it. Now I choose a baby sunscreen because it doesn’t make me itchy or one for faces or one that sprays on because those feel lighter. I enjoy being tan so I choose a low or medium SPF, skip sunscreen some days, and around midsummer I stop using sunscreen except on the very brightest days. Is that ok once I am tan? Sometimes people who see my dark tan warn me that I should always cover up even if I don’t think I am getting burned. Is it safe to continue using the sunscreens I bought last year, this year? Will you advise me about what to look for on the label? I know about SPF. What else should I know? 

Thanks,
Outdoorsy Sun Lover

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March's Health Genie: Iron

Dear Genie,

What can you tell me about iron? My husband and I have a new baby. I feel I could be anemic. We could both use something to support our energy. I never took multivitamins until my pregnancy so I am unsure about what to take now that I am no longer pregnant. My husband’s doctor urged him to avoid iron supplementation. I have heard that too much iron can be harmful to children. Should I be cautious about how much iron I take while I am nursing? Should we try to get our iron from food alone?

Thanks,
Tired Tina

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February's Health Genie: Zinc

Dear Genie,

I want to help my family miss less school and work. There are so many products in the cold and flu section. I am unfamiliar with most.  My kids would appreciate it if I didn’t make them take so many different supplements every time a cold is going around. They get exasperated if I offer too many remedies. My wife won’t take anything that is not backed by research. Can you suggest one supplement that could help us this season?

Thanks,

Devoted Dad

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June's Health Genie

Dear Genie,
We have an outdoor wedding to attend in July (where we’ll be standing at the edge of a beautiful pond). My wife says she doesn’t want me to wear my favorite dark blue suit. She claims that I will attract mosquitoes and pledges not to sit next to me if I do. We choose not to use conventional bug sprays. If I take my chances and wear my favorite suit, do you have any suggestions on ‘natural’ bug sprays?
Thanks,
Got the Blues for Bugs

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May's Healthy Genie

Dear Genie,
I saw a bag of ‘cacao nibs’ in the Co-op recently that seemed a bit more expensive than any chocolate I’ve seen. What are these and how are they supposed to be used?
Thanks,
Curious Chocoholic

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April's Health Genie

Dear Genie,
I bake a lot and use non-stick cooking sprays frequently, but tossing out those aluminum cans has always been an irritant.  Is there something that I can do to get the same effect, but reduce my level of waste?  I have tried using cooking oils, but haven’t been happy with the results.
Thanks,
Frustrated Baker

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March's Health Genie

Dear Genie,
I love buying food in the Bulk department of the co-op, but can’t find many Gluten-Free varieties of items.  You have a lot of these products prepackaged in your store, so why not have them in the bulk department too?
Signed,
GF Co-op member

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