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MissouriFamilies eNewsletter

January 10, 2017



“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

~Martin Luther King, Jr.



Illustration of houseRealizing the risks of radon

Kandace Fisher-McLean, MS, HHS, Housing and Environmental Design Specialist, St. Louis County, University of Missouri Extension

Radon is a radioactive gas that you cannot smell, see or taste. According to the National Cancer Institute, minimal levels of radon typically exist in all air. However, when radon is concentrated at high levels within the air of your home it can increase your chance of developing lung cancer when you breathe it in. Radon exposure is the second leading source of lung cancer in the United States behind cigarette smoking...

According to the EPA, radon gas is found everywhere in the United States and it is produced from the natural breakdown of uranium in soil, rock and water. Radon gas moves through the ground into the air and travels into your home through gaps, cracks and holes in the foundation. It can also enter through the water supply of your home. Once radon gas is in your home it can build up to dangerous levels. Approximately 1 out of every 15 homes in the United States has increased levels of radon.

January is National Radon Action Month and it's a good time to have your home tested...

To learn more about radon and how to get your home tested, see the full version of this article at

Hand writing a checkGiving wisely is hard work

Cereal company founder W.K. Kellogg famously noted years ago that it is easier to make money than it is to spend money wisely. It’s still true — spending is easy, but spending wisely takes a lot more effort. One aspect of your spending may be giving to charities and causes in which you’re interested. Try to make that giving deliberate instead of impulsive in 2017, recommends Cynthia Crawford and Andrew Zumwalt, professors in personal financial planning for University of Missouri Extension, and James Preston, MU assistant executive director for gift planning and endowments.

“We believe that people, when their finances permit, want to be generous,” Crawford said. “As with all spending, as Kellogg suggested, giving wisely takes some effort.”

As you think about your financial plan for 2017, consider these ideas, which can be found in the full version of this article at, to help you carefully incorporate giving into your plans.

Sick woman holding a tissueIs it a cold, the flu or pneumonia?

Gail Carlson, MPH, Ph.D., former State Health Education Specialist, Continuing Medical Education, University of Missouri

Your head hurts, your eyes are watery, your muscles ache and your cough is getting worse. You feel like climbing into bed, turning on the vaporizer and taking something to relieve the symptoms. But is that going to do the trick? The common cold, the flu and pneumonia can have similar symptoms. Mistaking one for the other can mean serious complications.

The chart below provides a summary of three illnesses frequently seen during the winter months: the common cold, the flu and bacterial pneumonia. The viruses and bacteria that cause these illnesses are around all year, but people are more likely to be exposed in winter because they spend more time inside, in closer contact with other people...

For the chart that breaks down symptoms, and for tips to get and stay well, see the full version of this article at

White Bean Basil Chicken ChiliWhite Bean Basil Chicken Chili

Recipe featured on Fox 4 Kansas City Healthy Habits segment. Prepared on September 25, 2016 by Tammy Roberts, Nutrition Specialist, University of Missouri Extension

Yield: 6 servings (1½ cups per serving)


  • 4 large radishes
  • 1 pound boneless chicken pieces
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 medium tomato
  • 1 large lime
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil
  • 2 (15.5-ounce) cans great northern beans, no salt added
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1½ teaspoons chili powder
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

For preparation steps and nutrition information, see the full version of this recipe at

For more Healthy Habits recipes, see

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