ESHCA Wellness Newsletter
August 2019
The shareable link (also printable) for this issue of the newsletter is:
Health Coaching: Would it benefit you?
ESHCA offers health coaching!!! A health coach provides oversight and education to help those with chronic diseases and health ailments better understand their condition and live successfully with it. Support is offered to those identified with conditions such as:
  • Diabetes and prediabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Asthma and COPD
  • Low back pain

Why would you need a health coach? By design, managing your health is confusing, if marketers can get you to question your treatment, they can get you to use or request their product. Having clarity in your treatment plan (medication, nutrition, exercise, etc.) gives you confidence. Consider the following:

  • Marketing of prescription drugs (only occurs in the US and New Zealand).
  • Pros - advertisements often provide information that educates us on health conditions.
  • Cons - patients may question their treatment, resulting in reduced confidence in their treatment plan and doctor.
  • Marketing of unregulated supplements.
  • $37 billion are spent on dietary supplements in the US annually. They are not regulated by the FDA and several are identified as ineffective and possibly harmful.
  • Marketing of nutrition and exercise programs.
  • $60 billion spent (includes some supplements) on weight loss programs each year. Most fail to deliver long-term results.
  • Processed foods make our lives easier, unfortunately, they also make us unhealthy.
  • $300 billion spent on fast food and $100 billion spent on junk food by consumers annually.
  • You could go years without eating a "real" fruit or vegetable.
  • Technology makes our lives easier but has decreased our physical activity.
  • When is the last time you shoveled your driveway or used a push mower?
  • Web MD services.
  • Again, a little knowledge without professional guidance, can be confusing and dangerous!

Current trend...
Doctors do not have time to thoroughly review topics such as nutrition and exercise. Typically, the safest, most efficient treatment is to prescribe medication and encourage patients to make lifestyle changes. Patients , concerned with the original diagnosis, initially take steps to improve their lifestyle only to become frustrated. Ultimately, they continue the same lifestyle, solely relying on medication to keep them healthy.

Keep your approach simple! I f your PCP indicates you need a medication, take the following steps:
  1. Use prescribed medications as directed. Review medications yearly with your PCP at your annual physical.
  2. Educate yourself on your condition, use reliable sources such as the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association.
  3. Make small changes to your diet targeting your condition. For example: What foods reduce blood pressure or what foods reduce blood sugar?
  4. Exercise or be physically active.

What kind of education does the health coach provide?
  • Personalized emails or mailings (1 to 4 per month) specific to your health concern.
  • Engaging with your condition regularly is the best way to ensure you are creating a healthy lifestyle that reduces your risk for a life-altering health event (heart attack, stroke, diabetes, cancer, etc.)
  • Health coaching sessions
  • Available for those who need extra help to set and reach goals that are important to their treatment plans.
  • Sessions are confidential and conducted by phone or through email correspondence.

How do you register?
  • Contact Patrick, ESHCA Wellness Coordinator:
  • Phone: 315-895-5303
  • Email: pflaherty@eshca.org
  • This program is offered at no cost or obligation to ESHCA members. Only have a couple of questions? Contact me, I am here to help!

$25 Incentive Challenge: Be Your Own Health Coach...

  1. First, identify a health issue you would like to delve into. It can be a) something that you or a loved one are afflicted with, b) something you are aware of in your family history or c) something you just make up to participate in the challenge. Examples: joint pain (arthritis), cancer, blood pressure, blood glucose, cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease, stroke, low back pain or anything else you can come up with.
  2. Second, conduct a web search focused on nutrition factors that improve that health issue. For example, search "foods that reduce blood sugar", "foods that improve blood pressure", "foods that reduce inflammation" and so on.
  3. Third, of the foods you find, record 3 that you use or could use regularly in your current diet and 3 that you would consider using in the future.
  4. Finally, send me an email with your responses. Include: a) the health condition you investigated and b) 3 foods you use and 3 you could add!
  5. Rules: anyone in your household can participate but only one $25 incentive card can be issued to each member household, the credit is applied to either the member or the member-spouse and the household is limited to 6 total newsletter challenges within the calendar year.

Stretch of the Month - Low Back (Part 2 - Extension)
Mistake Leads to Advances in Treatment of Low Back Pain... I n 1956 a physical therapist in New Zealand, Robin McKenzie, instructed a patient to lie face down on a treatment table. The patient had been working with McKenzie for 3 weeks with little improvement to his right side low back pain which also radiated through the right glute and down the right leg. Upon entering the room, McKenzie was shocked to find that the head end of the table had been raised. Not knowing any better, the patient lied face down on the table with his back arched (hyperextended) and overstretched for five minutes. At the time, this was thought to be a damaging position for people with low back pain. Upon having the patient stand, McKenzie discovered his symptoms had subsided, the pain was gone in the leg and glute and had "centralized" in the low back. The McKenzie Method was fully introduced in 1981, since then thousands of practitioners have been trained worldwide.

Who should use this method? Those that have low back pain, especially if it radiates down one side into the glute, upper/lower leg and foot.

Who should not use this method? Those diagnosed with spinal stenosis.

How do you determine success? These exercises are intended to "centralize" pain in the low back where it can be more effectively treated. If you use the exercises and the pain running into your glute or down your leg subsides, you are getting the desired result. If it makes your symptoms worse, stop immediately!
A) Lying on Stomach
B) Prone Props
C) Press Ups

A) Lying on Stomach - lie on your stomach with your head centered and relax for 5 minutes. Upon completion, stand up and walk around, if your symptoms are no worse then complete A and B next time.
B) Prone Props - lie flat, slide your elbows underneath you, lifting your chest off the floor but keeping your hip bones in contact with the floor. Hold for 30 seconds, lower yourself down, relax for a few seconds and then repeat 3-5 times. Stand up and walk around, if your symptoms are no worse then complete B and C next time.
C) Press Ups - lie on your stomach, slide your hands to a position even with your ears. Extend your arms, lifting your chest high but keeping your hip bones in contact with the floor. Hold for 30 seconds, then lower yourself to the floor, repeat 3-5 times. If your symptoms are no worse then start in position B or C next time.
* These exercises can be done 1-3 times per day.
Wellness Program Incentives 2019
Be rewarded for practicing healthy behaviors! Healthy employees cost less and are typically more productive. The ESHCA Wellness Program encourages members to practice healthy behaviors and live a healthy lifestyle. Save on your health premiums by taking advantage of the incentives offered:

  • Annual Physical Incentive ($200)
  • Click Here to download the required paperwork.
  • Nutrition Program ($50)
  • Take the ESHCA 49-Day Nutrition Challenge (offered in November and January) - or - get credit for participating in a nutrition program of your choice (example: Weight Watchers).
  • "Used" Gym Membership ($50)
  • Email (good cell phone picture works), mail or fax me a copy of the "Member Login Record" provided by your gym, illustrating you have completed 35 workouts this year and I will send you the incentive.
  • Don't belong to a gym but you exercise at home? Contact me and I will send you an activity log to fill out.
  • Smoking Cessation Program ($50)
  • Complete a smoking cessation program and send me proof of completion (includes prescription medication).
  • Complete 6 Newsletter Challenges ($25 each)

Don't forget ESHCA is a member of the Herb Philipson's Workwear Program! Show the cashier your ESHCA/MVP Insurance Card and get 10% off Herb's already low prices on "workwear items"!