An inconvenient Truth
It is an inconvenient truth, but most often, your cost of healthcare comes down to one person: You.
I know, I know. Your employer just starting paying less of your health insurance premium and you have to pick up the differences. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) is not kicking in fast enough for you, plus it is at the Supreme Court to see if it is constitutional. To top it off, the insurance companies are covering less and charging you more.
The truth is, our current healthcare system is more of a sickcare system. Regardless of any changes made to the system, it will continue to be that way, and “healthcare” costs will continue to rise.
It is easy to shift blame onto the faceless corporations and government agencies, even your own company. But when you get right down to it, the single biggest action to reduce your healthcare costs can only be taken by you.
How Healthy do You Live?
Do you take care of yourself, from a health perspective? Do you pay attention to what you eat, putting only wholesome, nutritional food in your body? Do you get some exercise every day, making movement an important part of your life?
If not, you are raising the cost of your healthcare. You are taking actions that directly lead to poorer health. In addition, you are teaching your children to take actions that directly lead to poorer health.
The good news is you have an option, just like I had an option.
My Choice, Do What Was Best for my Unborn Child, not What Seemed Convenient for Me
While I was pregnant with Samantha, I was diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes (GD). With a family history of diabetes, my GD specialists were unsure if I could control it with diet and exercise, but I was given the option to try.
This option did not seem easy. I had to write down everything I ate, plus every time I worked out. Additionally, I had some very specific guidelines I had to follow for food and exercise. Considering I was already contending with morning sickness and dairy/egg allergies, the idea of exercise or a more restrictive diet did not appeal to me. But, it is what my baby needed, so I did it.
I followed my doctor’s advice starting with morning yoga, all the way the dried fruit, nuts, and chocolate I had for evening snack. Did I say chocolate? Yes, I did. It turned out to be the best way to keep my nighttime sugar levels in check. I had one tablespoon dried fruit, one table spoon dairy free semi-sweet chocolate, and a handful of nuts, every night, for three months.
What did working out three times a day and eating six extremely regimented meals a day get me? I did not have to have to go on medicine to control the GD until the very end, when I had to stop the exercise due to contractions.
This meant I put myself and Samantha at less risk than I could have in any other way. Plus, I got chocolate every night before bed!
Most People Choose What is Convenient to Them
When I was first diagnosed, the doctor had me use a machine to take my blood sugar, write down my numbers, and then she double checked my numbers on the machine. I asked her why she did that, and she said “most people lie”.
She proceeded to tell me that there were some patients that not only lie about their number, but that will use insulin after eating completely unhealthy foods as if that reduced all risks to the mother and baby.
I cannot understand this, but it is the way of the world. Even when something as immediate as GD comes into their lives, many people still choose to ignore the inconvenient truth. They will take the comforting lie instead.
And who are they hurting with this? The only people they are hurting are themselves and their children.
In a case like this, it is easier to see the downsides of an unhealthy lifestyle. Yet, there are people who will choose poor health for an immediate convenience, even when the poor health is staring them in the face.
For most, the consequences of poor health are not so easy to see. They are in the future, not right now. And there seems to be time to change or drugs to manage the consequences, so there is no need to worry, right?
What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You
Knowledge gives you the ability to avoid the hurt from an unhealthy lifestyle. While you assume you can always “fix” things later, your healthcare costs will continue to needlessly rise.
But you can do something about it. You can choose to be active and to eat a balanced diet. You can choose to take your health, and your happiness, into your own hands.
What choice will you make?