Does your annual physical have positive effects on your healthy behavior?
I recently spoke with a member who was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes at their annual physical. The Primary Care Physician outlined a treatment plan including prescription meds and a 6-month follow-up appointment. The member, knowing they could improve their lifestyle (specifically nutrition), asked the PCP to hold off on medication and give them the 6-months to "naturally" improve their condition. The PCP agreed and was amazed 6-months later when the member returned having lost a significant amount of weight (greater than 10%), improving all their blood work including a blood glucose reading within normal ranges.
- Diabetes Fast Facts:
- Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in the US (79,535/year).
- Costs $327 billion in health care costs (including $90 billion lost in productivity).
- 30.3 million adults in the US have diabetes (7.2 million are undiagnosed).
- 84.1 million Americans have pre-diabetes.
What issues did the member identify as needed changes?
- The member stated that they had allowed their weight to get out of control
- Weight and Health Statistics:
- CDC (2018) statistics indicated 71.6% of American adults (20+ years) were overweight (39.8% obese).
- Excess body weight is linked to the leading causes of death including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and certain kinds of cancer. It is also associated with poor mental health and quality of life.
- Research (along with our example) demonstrates small improvements in body weight (5-10%) can have positive effects on your health.
- Blamed weight gain on poor food choices, especially eating out while working out of town.
What changes did they make?
- 1) Cut out "fast food" and "junk food"!
- 2) Took more care in planning and preparing meals including:
- packing a lunch box with healthier choices (rather than eating out)
- eating more fruits and vegetables
- started using a veggie pasta maker
- cooked in the hotel room using an air fryer, improving the quality of meals by reducing saturated fat intake.
Taking action, makes a difference!
- Not only did they improve their health, they also saved themselves time and money!
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