Healthcare Sucks For The Poor

Since I have become apart of the lowest of all citizens, the uninsured and the unemployed, I have come to realize the healthcare system discriminates against the poor. I am a high risk person because of my weight since being overweight brings added health issues and insurance companies don’t want to fool with these types of people. Telling my weight over the phone is automatic denial for health insurance for me..

When I had a job with healthcare I didn’t have the problems I am facing now in the healthcare system. These days when I visit a health provider I am either denied or referred to a clinic. I do have some government insurance and even that is an issue for some healthcare providers. As soon as I tell them what type of healthcare insurance I have the first thing they say is we don’t except that. Most of the doctors who do except the type of insurance I have basically give you a patch up job and send you on your way. You have to work to survive even though you are sick.

Another problem I have faced since being underinsured is the unprofessional treatment from healthcare workers. There have been a few times I was sitting in a waiting area at a doctor’s office listening for my name and my name was never called. After sitting for over an hour waiting I went to the front desk of the doctor’s office and complained about it. The woman at the desk said they had called my name already. Unless I went deaf momentarily I didn’t hear anyone call my name; if that was the case I would’ve responded. They however did not for sure because they were using an intercom system which was loud and clear.

I have also had issues with scheduling for my appointments such as not being scheduled at all or being told they never received my paperwork. Is human error to blame? I can understand mistakes periodically but continuous mishaps starts to feel like more than a mistake. Believe it or not these types of mistakes could cost someone their life. Because of them not doing their job properly my appointment was set back a few weeks or even months. When the sick are sick timing is everything for their health. Some may not have 4 to 6 weeks to wait on a diagnosis for something that could be potentially fatal. It is a shame how the healthcare system sucks for the poor.

Tips to Stay Fit and Healthy in Ramadan

In Ramadan, it’s important that you maintain your health while fasting. The first thing is to have a healthy eating habit. Given below are some tips that can help you stay fit and healthy in this holy month.

Never skip the First Meal

Just like breakfast, Suhour is the first meal of the day in Ramadan. This meal will help your body keep hydrated until the Iftar time. Moreover, it will help you avoid overeating at the Iftar time. Make sure your suhour meal consists of foods rich in fiber, carbs, and protein.

Eat Fruit and Vegetables

Fresh fruits and veggies make a great snack. In fact, they are a great alternative to the junk food we consume on a regular basis. Ideally, you should opt for fruits and veggies that are full of water, such as pumpkins, squash, melons, and cucumber, to name a few.

Don’t have Processed Foods

It’s a good idea to stay away from processed foods, such as white flour and sugar. They contain a small number of nutrients and a lot of fat.

Eat Slowly

You may have the urge to eat a lot at Iftar, but this is not going to be good for your health. So, it’s better if you slow down while eating.

You can eat a few dates and then have some water. Dates are full of energy and they help your digestive system as well. After having some dates, you can have some lukewarm soup.

Your meals shouldn’t contain a lot of heavy oils and fats. Ideally, you should have some veggies to meet your need for protein and carbs.

Stay Hydrated

Make sure you have a minimum of 8 cups of water on a daily basis in Ramadan. Staying away from sugary drinks like Hibiscus and Tamarind is a good idea. While milk, soup, and juices can help you stay hydrated, know that nothing can take the place of water. So, it’s better to have small quantities of other drinks.

Avoid Caffeinated Drinks

As far as keeping hydrated is concerned, caffeine is the worst thing you can have in Ramadan. So, it’s better to avoid drinks like colas, coffee, and strong tea.

Avoid Deep-Frying

Deep-fried foods are no good either. In other words, it’s better to avoid foods that have a lot of oil in them. If you want to have them anyway, make sure you use as little oil as possible. For instance, you can use half a cup instead of one full cup of oil.

Also, it’s a good idea to opt for monounsaturated fats like corn oil, canola, and sunflowers. Don’t go for olive oil either.

Consult your Doctor

If you are over the age of 50, don’t forget to consult your doctor before Ramadan. In the same way, kids, people with diabetes and pregnant women should follow the same advice. You don’t want to make your health condition worse in Ramadan.

Healthcare Plan Savings Discussed

During these times when hospital bills and professional doctors fee are high, medicines are expensive, and temptations for foods, drinks and vices are everywhere, staying healthy is a must. While some are gifted with good and healthy body, others struggle to maintain a healthy body. And with the price of healthcare plan contributing to the expenses we already have, there is a great need and knowledge on how to somehow cut the cost of healthcare plan.

Although you cannot do anything to bring down the price of your healthcare plan, you can manage to acquire significant saving by following these steps.

Stay Healthy – Yep! The golden rule if you want to live longer. Skeptical? Well, nobody blames you but if you would like to give you body a great chance of living beyond your life expectancy, staying healthy is worth the shot. If you aim to get a cheaper healthcare plan, then this is also a great way to achieve it. Since healthcare plan companies base the price of their plan on the status of the health of the individual, don’t be surprised if some might get higher rate than others. If you are conscious about it, then maintaining a healthy life could spare you from high healthcare plan rate.

Quit Smoking – Now that’s difficult! But if you are a kind of person who will do anything just to keep the healthcare plan rate to the minimum, you can always start by kicking the habit away. So what does it have to do with low healthcare plan? A person who smokes is more prone to healthcare claims than those who do not. And if you understand the business, you would realize that healthcare plan companies receive more claims from smoking plan holders. The tendency is to sanction higher healthcare plan rates to those who smoke. Think about it! If you quite smoking, you save from healthcare plan bills, spare you from the cost of your everyday cigarette consumption, and give you a better chance to live cleaner and longer life.

Exercise and Lose Weight- If you are part of the growing number of Americans who can either be classified as overweight or obese, then expect to have a higher healthcare plan price. It is wise to keep a normal body size and maintain it with regular exercise so you can get a desired healthcare plan rate.

Good healthcare plan selection – If it’s cheap, it does not necessarily mean it’s really “cheap.” Never let the price be your basis in taking a healthcare plan. As much as possible look for plan that gives you more benefits at the price advantageous to you.

Maximize other existing plan – If you presently have health insurance plan, make sure that you avoid getting another one with an identical coverage. This would surely drain your pockets by having unnecessary benefits you can never use. Also avoid buying unnecessary healthcare plan if you already have enough plan.

Know the type of plan you are buying – If you are buying healthcare plan for the first time, you should identify first the type of coverage you want. In this way, you can eliminate those unnecessary coverage you think you can never use. Remember that every coverage is paid so making sure that you can the healthcare plan that fits your need.

Knowing Allergies and Their Symptoms Can Save Your Life

There is an old saying that says, “Health is wealth”. Money, possessions, properties, etc. can all be taken away and a person can still find ways to get more of them or acquire them back. But take a person’s health away and you will find him unable to do anything else. For the sake of your own safety and protection, it is important to keep yourself aware of the many medical conditions and symptoms that exist today. Allergies are seemingly very common these days, but there are some that are much more severe than the others. These can be potentially fatal as well, and so, having a good idea of what they are and how they develop can save your life.

Natural causes

Some of the most common health problems that are faced by people today are caused by completely natural forces that are beyond the help of human beings. For example, pollen allergy is very commonly seen among many societies in the present world. It is caused by inhaling the very fine and yellowish powder that is released by flowers, and carried by birds, animals, insects, and most commonly, the wind. For the plants it is a way of reproduction and breeding, but for many humans, it becomes a health hazard. For people who are chronically affected by this, it can mean a lot of misery. Knowing how to protect yourself is the first step to being careful.

Taking precautions 

Taking the necessary precautions to protect yourself from these types of naturally caused allergies is very important since you run the risk of getting severely affected. Grass pollen is known to cause a lot of misery and inconvenience to many people and it can sometimes take a long time to recover once affected. Many local news channels provide frequent updates on what the pollen count in each of the surrounding areas is. Keeping track of this will help you take better care of your health and prevent exposure. It will also give you an idea of the areas that you should avoid while going out.

Knowing the symptoms 

It is always advisable not to self-evaluate your health, in order to prevent you from coming to the wrong conclusions unnecessarily. But in some cases, it is better to be aware of what symptoms you should look out for if you are susceptible to grass allergy. Some of the commonly seen symptoms are sneezing, runny nose, nasal congestion, itchy eyes and throat, watery eyes, and wheezing. In most cases, these may be normal and nothing to be alarmed of. But in case you find yourself having signs of aggravated asthma such as increased wheezing and coughing, you should consult an allergist right away.

Deforming Healthcare

We all want health care to be available to every American who needs it, but the current health care debate has turned into a monster. It is no longer about uninsured poor Americans. If it were, I would not be affected, since I am neither uninsured nor poor. This is clearly a power-grab.

I believe that the representatives writing the health care legislation are not interested in giving. They are focused on taking. As I wrote in my book “7 Life Lessons You Should Know,” politicians are not in the problem-solving business. If you are not prepared to make a situation better, leave it on the table. We can always come back and screw it up later.

I have an interest, just as you do, in how this pans out and have attempted to educate myself as well as possible on where we are in the process. Most sensible people who investigate the bills agree that if passed, we will experience scarcity in available medical services. About the time this is mentioned, someone usually comes on television and accuses whoever says that of hating poor people and wanting them to suffer. That’s because the power grabbers can’t afford for voters to focus on the word “scarcity.” We all understand what that means. Put ten children in a room with seven toys for an hour. How long does it take a child to understand the concept of scarcity? My son is only four and I imagine he would begin to panic in less than sixty seconds if placed in such a situation. There is rocket science and then there is scarcity. One of those notions is complicated.

The “death panel” comment keeps coming up and has certainly stirred up a lot of emotion. It makes sense to me. Some people are simply going to have to be turned away from health care. We know that because of every other country and even the U.S. states that have tried the same system. Part of the concern derives from political discrimination. If we make it easy for people to do the wrong thing, it will happen that way more often. Why should we tempt our politicians with such an opportunity to abuse us? One worry is that a strong Democrat majority will appoint people who refuse care to Republicans. Let’s just put it out there. Why should we tempt them and whisper into their ear “if you kill off enough Republicans, you will be able to keep all this money and power?” That is asking for trouble. And if you are a Democrat and thinking hey, that puts me on the best side, think again. Just because the White House is currently between Republicans, that does not mean that change isn’t coming yet again. Never give power to liberals that you would not want to hand over to conservatives.

And what about cost? No one seems to even know. The estimates vary greatly, from “it will cost less” to near infinity. As I have written elsewhere, I am a numbers guy so here I go again. I have tried to collect the most relevant and accurate data possible. These are not the exact numbers I wanted, but I can still make this explanation work.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2004 the gasoline consumption per person per year was 465.5 gallons. File that away for now. There have been a couple of recent “independent” studies trying to estimate the increase in health care costs that will be brought about by the proposed legislation. The PriceWaterhouseCooper estimate was $4800 per family per year, over and above health care inflation. The Oliver Wyman study was only $3300 per family per year. Let us use the low number just to show that I am not trying to exaggerate anything here as we put the data together. And I will assume that households have two drivers for a total annual consumption per household of 931 gallons. As stated earlier, an additional $3300 will be spent by families without additional services or goods being received. $3300 divided by 931 gallons is $3.54/gallon. So where am I going with this?

The estimated increased expense per household is equivalent to gasoline going from $2.50 to over $6.00 per gallon. Ouch. I remember what four dollar gasoline did to my checking account. Things were very tight for a while. In my opinion, that was the tipping point that pushed so many households over the edge and started the mortgage meltdown. Hundreds of dollars disappeared every month from consumers’ pockets and since so many of us were barely scraping by anyway, mortgages could no longer be paid. The meltdown was inevitable, but four dollar gasoline was the final catalyst. The equivalent to six dollar gasoline is coming during the time of a deep recession because of this power grab. This one is really going to hurt. You will not have to prove that you are American to get free health insurance; you will just have to prove that you are broke. How long will it be before those two labels are synonymous? With free market health care, success is measured by saving lives. With single payer health care, success is measured by saving money.

I once heard someone suggest that the working public would eventually be forced to decide whether to support its parents or its children because there would not be enough money to do both. It turns out that he was overly optimistic. Soon we will not have the resources to do either. My political heroes feel the urgent necessity of borrowing $800 billion from China in an effort to pay for health insurance on 12 million Mexicans. Why can’t we just bring in Jimmy Carter to negotiate an agreement between the two of them and leave me out of it?

The elderly (age 65 and over) made up around 13 percent of the U.S. population in 2002, but they consumed 36 percent of total U.S. personal health care expenses according to the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Publication. Our health care system can typically treat a number of forty-year-old people and their moderate issues for the price of the care necessary to save just one eighty-year-old. Problem: if those forty-year-olds get enough care they will eventually grow to be eighty and develop very expensive life-threatening issues and eventually become financial anchors of the system as well. You are minding your own business, taking life one day at a time, and the next thing you know you find your access to necessary medication getting hatcheted by your own kids. I guess the only fair part of that is that they will eventually get the axe by their children as well if the rationing comes to light as expected. Instead of naming the proposed health care legislation after Senator Ted Kennedy perhaps it should be called the “Lizzie Borden Plan.” I am opposed to the takeover. We must collectively agree to cut off the career and sever future aspirations of any political hero who votes to initiate such inhumanity. Perhaps the next public debate on the issue could be held near Lizzie’s home in Fall River, Massachusetts. I read that it is actually a bed and breakfast now.

If my government takes control of all medical professions, health care will invariably be transformed from acute to obtuse. This is no longer about uninsured poor Americans. Once again, if it were, I would not be affected because I am neither uninsured nor poor. The uninsured poor in America are not being helped, they are being used. Used by my White House and by my Congress. Go ahead and pack your bags folks, we are all going on a power trip.

Don’t Join the ‘Morning’ Club

Recently, a colleague invited all his friends and clients to join him in the ‘ Morning Club’. This required getting up at 5 a.m., exercising, working on projects for several hours and getting children off to school before arriving at the office at 9 a.m. This routine was touted as a means to make you more productive as you would have completed several tasks before you even got to the office.

Though I am very happy for my colleague for having found a routine which works for him and helps him achieve his goals, it is erroneous to assume that this routine will work for everyone. In fact, many people who try this routine will find that their health and well-being suffers and they are less productive than before. I know this both from my personal experience as well as working with hundreds of clients who request help in healing both their sleep and their health.

The idea of getting up early ‘to get things done’ comes from the view in our society that we are only valued when we are productive and sleep is to be minimized because it keeps us from being productive.

Our society also still reflects an agricultural orientation that required working when the sun was shining. Even though electricity allows us to work when it is dark outside, we still adhere to the principle of ‘making hay when the sun shines.’

In our need to get up early and get work done, we have now become quite sleep deprived. In fact, most surveys show that up to 50% of us are getting less than 7 hours of sleep each night. This, while other research shows that the best health outcomes and longevity are associated with nightly sleep of between 7 and 8 hours.

If you are regularly getting up at 5 a.m. even though you would rather be sleeping, it is likely you are sleep deprived and if you are sleep deprived, you will be less productive, sick more often and at greater risk of making mistakes and being injured.

Another reason not to join the Morning Club is because you may be most productive and do your best work later in the day or at night. I am such a ‘night owl’ and I tried for a long time to be in the ‘Morning Club’ until a physical crisis taught me that I was healthiest and most successful if I followed my own best waking and productivity schedule.

Night owls have been indoctrinated to believe that there is virtue in waking early, and even if they are successful in life and work, they find it difficult to overcome the shame and guilt of not being able to be ‘early birds.’

If you are an early bird type and being a member of the Morning Club allows you to be healthy and successful, great! But realize that we are not all programmed to be early birds and trying to do so is detrimental to our health and well-being. Rather than believing we can all be part of the Morning Club, we should be more focused on recognizing when we are most awake and alert and plan our sleeping and waking schedule accordingly. That is how and when we will be most productive, healthy, creative and successful.

Stories of Hope: Drilling Into My Skull and Injecting Stem Cells Helped My Stroke

Life on one hand seems all bright and beautiful. And when faced with an irreversible ailment with no visible room for recovery, then it seems like uncertainty has had a tight grip on life. Ailments like cancers of all kind, immune system and blood disorders and chronic brain and spine injuries all pose a threat to life. And in the recent times, cord blood stem cell has been the only miracle cure that has been successfully combating the list of dangerous and untreatable ailments and recording victory.

Such is the story of Evelyn Hilton, who was a brave heart to volunteer for stem cell transplant to treat her brain condition. The lady at 58 witnessed a stroke back in 2014. Going by her account, it was a weekend and she doesn’t recall graphic details about the stroke. But she confirms it was a painful one and it prohibited all the movement to the left side of her body. Struggling with this condition, Evelyn wasn’t ready to give up, as she had a list of things to achieve and she didn’t want to quit all that.

Being stuck in the hospital bed makes one vulnerable at the hands of the medical system! Not having any control on her left side, Evelyn one day decided to volunteer for what seemed to her just an experiment. In the course of it a liquid mix of stem cell got injected to her brain cells. During that time, this revolutionary treatment was experimented only on selected patients and the outcome were safe and very effective. The process did however require a hole to be drilled in her skull.

The stakes were high and the results were expected to favourable. But just the idea of drilling a hole into the skull seemed painful and challenging. In her own words, Evelyn expressed her desire to be back to normal, daily life, was so strong, that she was prepared for almost anything. All she assured herself was that the process might just help her heal back than stay in the stroke indefinitely.

Recounting her story, she says, that she reached the hospital within a span of 4 hours and received proper medication that helped to eradicate the blood clot that had taken place and averting further damage. And after she received the stem cell therapy, on the 6th month of her treatment where patients are noted to recovery, she wonders if she would get any better without that. Filled with grace and gratitude Evelyn says that in the time frame of two and half years of her stroke, she has only seen health improvements post the stem cell therapy. Though the changes have been slow, but they are consistent and that’s what helped keep a positive attitude to life.

Over the past few months, Evelyn confirms that she has recovered in a huge way on the left side of her body. This made her do away with the walking stick. She has left it and it’s been a while. She didn’t want the world to look upon her as a disabled, old body but rather as one who is continuously improving in body and mind, with every passing day.

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