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Study: Vitamin D supplements important for baby but optimal daily dose in question

BY Michael Johnsen

NEW YORK — A study in the May issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association released Tuesday found that vitamin D supplementation may be important for breast-feeding moms. 

“Vitamin D is important during periods of rapid bone mineral accrual. Nursing infants are susceptible to vitamin D deficiency because vitamin D in breast milk is limited,” according to background information in the article. The report recommended vitamin D supplementation with at least 400 International Units per day, but cautioned against supplementing with amounts as high as 1,600 IUs per day. 

The trial included 132 one-month-old healthy, term, breastfed infants. Researchers found that the percentage of infants achieving a primary vitamin D level differed at three months by group — for those taking 400 IUs per day, 55% achieved optimal vitamin D levels (defined as 75 nanomoles per liter of plasma); for 800 IUs per day, 81%; for 1,200 IUs per day, 92%; and for 1,600 IUs per day, 100%. 

Bone mineral concentration increased over time for lumbar spine, femur and whole body but did not differ by group.

“Our primary objective was to establish a vitamin D dosage that would support [optimal vitamin D levels] or greater in 97.5% of infants at three months of age. Only the 1,600-IUs per day dosage of vitamin D met this criterion; however, this dosage was discontinued because most infants in that group developed elevated [vitamin D] concentrations that have been associated with hypercalcemia [higher-than-normal level of calcium in the blood],” the authors wrote. “Thus, the primary outcome was not achieved at three months."


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Planters Peanuts launches energy snack mix

BY Jason Owen

NEW YORK — Planters Peanuts has launched a new snack mix with the aim to provide a sustaining boost of energy.

New Planters NUT-rition Sustaining Energy Mix is designed to provide wholesome fuel and is a good source of protein, fiber and four vitamins and minerals, according to the company.

Planters NUT-rition is available in three varieties:

  • Apple Cinnamon — a blend of honey roasted peanuts, almonds, cinnamon soy clusters and dried apples;
  • Chocolate Nut — a blend of honey roasted peanuts, candy coated dark chocolate soy nuts, honey soy clusters and almonds;
  •  Honey Nut —  a blend of honey roasted peanuts, almonds, honey roasted cashews and honey soy clusters.

 Planters NUT-rition Sustaining Energy Mix is available now on retail shelves nationwide.


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Safeway elevates president Robert Edwards to CEO

BY Michael Johnsen

PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway late Monday announced that Robert Edwards, currently the company’s president, will succeed Steven Burd as CEO when Burd retires as chairman and CEO on May 14. Edwards, 57, will also join the company’s board of directors.

"Since he arrived here in 2004, Robert has successfully met every challenge he has faced," Burd stated. "He has demonstrated the ability to lead the company in all facets of its operations, and has earned the respect of the entire organization."

Safeway also announced that Gary Rogers, currently the company’s lead independent director, will become non-executive chairman upon Burd’s retirement.

 "The board undertook a thorough search and concluded that Robert is the best candidate to lead Safeway," Rogers said. "He has the talent and experience that give the Board confidence that he will be a successful CEO."

Edwards joined Safeway as EVP and CFO in 2004. In April 2012, he was named president, with overall responsibility for the company’s retail operations, marketing, merchandising, corporate brands, manufacturing, distribution and finance functions. He continued as CFO until Peter Bocian succeeded him in that role in February 2013. 

Prior to joining Safeway, Edwards served as a senior executive at Maxtor Corporation, Imation Corporation and Santa Fe Pacific Corporation. He serves as a director on KKR Financial Holdings and on Blackhawk Network Holdings, a subsidiary of Safeway. Edwards holds a Masters in Business Administration and a Bachelor of Sciences in Accounting from Brigham Young University.

Rogers, 70, has been a member of the company’s board of directors since March 2011. He is the former chairman and CEO of Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream, where he led the development of one of the nation’s largest ice cream companies from 1977 to 2007. He later served as non-executive chairman of Levi Strauss & Co. and of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.


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