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Health fair covers broad spectrum

Southbridge residents sought for two research studies

Michelle of Page Chiropractic (who declined to give her last name), right, gives a volunteer a spinal scan, intended to identify whether muscle tensions are balanced. Gus Steeves. (click for larger version)
November 21, 2011
SOUTHBRIDGE — Common sense says protecting one's health is about ensuring the future. But for some participants of Thursday's "Fall Into Health" fair at LaSalle Hall, the focus is more long-term than others.

Specifically, the fair featured recruitment efforts for two studies of women and their children — one lasting two more years regarding second-hand smoke in homes, the other a broader, 21-year look at environment and social impacts on their well-being.

According to Jacquelyn Toledo, a coach for Common Pathways of Worcester, the first of them is seeking people now. Called the "Breathe Free for Kids" study, it seeks families with young children in which a parent or frequent visitor smokes, but isn't aiming to convince the smokers to quit (unless they want to). Instead, the goal is to find out how much nicotine the children are currently exposed to and help the parents reduce that.

"It's based on the idea that most people already know this information, but because of other factors and stressors don't act on it," Toledo said.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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