Saturday, January 25, 2003

Study could result in scholarship funds

Mount Healthy seeking participants

By Angela Koenig
Enquirer contributor

MOUNT HEALTHY - A vitamin study here could net the Mount Healthy Alumni Association up to $5,000 in scholarship funds.

"Hopefully, we'll get a minimum of 600 people to do this, which would give two nice scholarships," said Beverly Spellmeyer, secretary of the Mount Healthy Alumni Association.

Mrs. Spellmeyer is coordinating volunteers to participate in a study of the vitamin supplement Ester-C, a patented form of Vitamin C produced by Zila Inc., an Arizona-based pharmaceuticals company.

The company claims that Ester-C remains in the system longer than other forms of Vitamin C, reduces the severity and duration of colds and flu, and improves general health. The product is sold over the counter in health foods stores.

"We chose Mount Healthy obviously because of its name and because it's middle America," said company representative Phil Brown. The company, he said, also looked at a town called Ester. "But it's in Alaska and only has about 150 people."

"I jumped on the bandwagon when it came my way," Mrs. Spellmeyer said, after learning about the prospect at a Mount Healthy Business Association meeting.

"We have a really hard time making a substantial amount of money for scholarships. I thought, if I can do this for the kids, I will,'' she said.

The company will give the alumni association $5 for every person who completes the study and could take 1,000 or more volunteers, Mr. Brown said.

Study orientations begin Feb. 5. Pickup dates are Feb. 7 and 8. Participation involves taking two Ester-C tablets daily for 50-60 days. There is also monitoring by company representatives and a follow-up survey. There is no age limit.

"I'd like to get entire families so we can really boost our numbers,'' said Mrs. Spellmeyer.

Anyone interested in participating should either live or work in Mount Healthy. Contact Mrs. Spellmeyer at 825-7829.

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