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Once again inspired by my countrywoman, Marie, over at Journeying Beyond Breast Cancer, I have decided to dip my toes in the water and try something completely different.I will be attempting to write a post a day for all 30 days of April. By no means am I an expert on health; in truth, I’m amazed by just how little I knew about my own health until cancer came calling. Now, I have something to say, possibly every day this month. Not just about my cancer or me, but definitely about health. To help me along the way, WEGO Health has provided a month’s worth of health-related daily prompts to help me get creative. So … I’m up for the challenge and plan to have a little fun with it, so why don’t you join me? All you have to do to join is sign up here: http://info.wegohealth.com/HAWMC2012

Day One: Health Time Capsule: Pretend you’re making a time capsule of you and your health focus that won’t be opened until 2112. What’s in it? What would people think of it when they found it?

… an intriguing idea, isn’t it? It made me wonder what would have been placed in a time capsule 100 years ago. A quick internet search led me to Royal DSM where I learned about Polish scientist, Casimir Funk. Who? Mr. Funk, it turns out, is the person credited with a new word in 1912 used to describe those “bioactive substances essential for human and animal health.” Vitamins. Given how much we spend on said substances, you’d think I would know they were celebrating their 100th birthday. We spend a lot. This past November cbsnews.com referenced a New York Times article reporting that “half of adults take some form of vitamins at an annual cost of $23 billion.” That’s a lot of people.

I’m curious, though. How did Casimir Funk coin the term adopted by the scientific community hundred years ago? According to the little blurb I found at the U.S. National Center for Biotechnology Information, while Funk was researching those factors that contributed to nutritional deficiency diseases like beriberi, he isolated Vitamin B, and named it “vitamine.” It would have been a medical “sniglet” in 1911, Funk’s clever combination of the Latin “vita” (life) and “amine” (nitrogen compound). I couldn’t have said it better than DSM, a self-proclaimed global leader in the vitamin business, “Vitamins are now officially 100 years old, but their history has just begun.” And so, I imagine they deserve a spot in the 2112 time capsule.

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