After our successful blogger lunch in Palo Alto, Baby E and I were emboldened to broaden our horizons and travel north up to El Cerito last week. We were invited to the Safeway Winter Health Shop Along at the recently opened "lifestyle" Safeway near the El Cerito Norte Bart station. The eco-conscious team at Safeway had planned the event there so bloggers could come by Bart. It turned out that we had all driven, which ended up being a good thing because we each got two grocery bags full of healthy food to take with us--more on that later.
The event was a walk through Safeway so we could discuss some of the ways that we could keep ourselves and our families healthy this winter season. Officially winter starts on December 22 this year, but any mom can tell you that it really starts when you have to take out the warm jackets and hats and when the cold and flu season starts. This week is the first week that we've needed to wear winter coats so it was perfect timing for the Safeway event.
Two other things I learned about the flu shot that I hadn't known before: 1) it takes 2 weeks for your body to build up the immunity after the shot, and 2) for children who have not had the shot before, they need to have two shots, a month apart, for full effect to take hold. My health care provider had failed to mention this, so it looks like I need to be taking in R for a second shot asap!
Next we moved to the soap and tissue aisle. What I learned here was interesting--there is no need for antibacterial soap. Dr. Risa said it best, "who cares if the bacteria on your hand are alive or dead when you wash them down the drain?" I'm definitely not paying extra for antibacterial soap in the future. She did agree that antibacterial hand sanitizers were useful for when you can't get to a sink.
Back to the tour and Dr. Risa at the pharmacy. She spoke about the dangers of brand extension and overdosing children with over the counter medications. For example, if the doctor says to get some Triaminic and Tylenol, many parents don't realize that there are some versions of Triaminic that already contain acetaminophen (the drug in Tylenol). Too much acetaminophen can cause liver damage (and too much ibuprofen can cause stomach ulcers) so making sure you and your kids get the proper dosage of these drugs is very important.
Some of the bloggers were getting flu shots after the shop along tour. The pharmacy had a very nice enclosed waiting area. I had noticed that the two Safeways closest to my house had pharmacies that were undergoing renovation and I was pleased to see what they would look like. Instead of feeling a bit unsettled by getting a shot in plain view of shoppers in aisle five, now people could have the privacy of a clinic setting behind pharmacy doors. Right now there is a promotion at Safeway that if get your flu shot there, you will get a coupon for 10% off groceries. If I had an insurance plan that would have allowed me to get my shot at Safeway, I would definitely have taken this deal!
As you can tell I learned a lot from this event, and could write a post even twice the length of this one but I think the best way would be if you go to your local Safeway and pick up a few of their helpful health and wellness materials available at the pharmacy. One lucky Random Mommy reader will have the chance to pick up healthy foods and drinks courtesy of Safeway with a $50 gift card (good at any of the Safeway family of stores including VONS and Dominicks)!
HOW TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY: Contest period runs from Sunday, November 20, 2011 at 1:30 PM (Pacific) until Wednesday, November 30th, 2011 at 11:59 PM (Pacific). Enter by leaving a comment on your favorite cold remedy, and leave your e-mail address OR sign in to comments using your Blogger ID, making sure your Blogger profile is public and includes your e-mail address.
Bonus Entries (leave a separate comment for each entry, it counts if you've done any of these so leave a comment for each one)
1) Follow me on Twitter
2) Tweet this contest and leave the tweet url (once per day)
3) Follow my blog with Google Friend Connect by clicking on the sidebar
If you don't leave a qualifying comment and your e-mail address or public Blogger profile, your entry will be disqualified. I reserve the right to extend the contest period. At the end of the contest period, I will utilize Random.org to randomly choose the winner. The winner will be contacted by e-mail and will have 72 hours to respond to my e-mail. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, the prize will go to the next place winner as decided by Random.org. This contest is open for US Residents only. Good luck and have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!
I did not receive compensation for this post. I did receive a Safeway giftcard and product samples to facilitate my review.