Getting Well and Staying Healthy

Dieting is a sprint…lifestyle is a marathon. You can be well and remain healthy by consuming food that is good for you. Here are some easy tips for staying healthy.

1. Keep ‘stock’ foods in the pantry:
Examples:
Canned fruit, tuna fish, peanut butter, dried legumes, oatmeal,
whole grain cereals & crackers, pasta, rice, marinara sauce, parmalat
milk, almond, coconut milk in carton.

2. Keep ‘stock’ food in freezer.
Examples:
Frozen vegetables, variety of fruit that can be thawed. bread or other baked goods.

3. Prepare meals in advance:
Double up when cooking meats: poultry, lamb, red meat, and pork.
Get out your crock-pot! Make soups, stews. bean soup, or chili.

4. Separate meals into single servings and freeze for later use.

5. Eat at least 2-3 servings of fruit daily, preferably fresh, frozen or canned in its own juice (not syrup).

6. Consume unlimited vegetables. These can be eaten as salads, soups, or as a side item with a meal.
Try dipping fresh zucchini or squash in a light dressing or hummus for a snack.

7. Eat several small meals during the day instead of one large meal.
This> helps to control weight and blood sugars.

8. Breakfast is king! Your body needs energy after eight hours without nourishment.
Never skip the morning meal, especially if taking medications.
It is recommended to consume fiber with your breakfast.
Examples of fiber containing foods:
Fruit, vegetables, legumes (dried beans), flax seed, chia seed,oatmeal, whole grains.
Fiber goal: 20-30 grams daily

9. If diabetic, always consume a protein with a carbohydrate.
It is imperative that you take your blood glucose (sugar) at least once a day.
Do not skip meals. Consume breakfast, lunch, and dinner along with at least 2-3 snacks.

10. Consume at least 6-8 glasses of fluid daily. This can be decaf coffee, green/black tea, and water.
Remember: Caffeinated beverages are dehydrating.

If your mouth is dry it is usually an indication of dehydration; so bottoms up with the water bottle.

Barb M. Mahlmeister RDN, IFMCP
Certified Functional Dietitian
Natural Choice Nutrition

The ABC & D’s of the Medicare Maze

When: You know you are close to turning 65- because you will start getting a lot of mail.
Basically: 3-months before your 65th birthday- apply for your Medicare A & B card (if that’s your route)

Then: As soon as you get that Red, White, & Blue Medicare card- talk to a professional about your Medicare options. There are many agents. I would encourage finding an Independent Agent licensed with many companies.

What: Once you get Medicare, there are 2-options.
Option 1: Medicare Supplements (10 Federally Stand-alone Plans, A-L)
They have been working… well, since Medicare (1965, over 50 years).
They have premiums; no networks, no referrals, no deductibles, and very few co-pays- if any.

Option 2: Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C)
Some Dr. Offices call these, “Replacement Plans”, because they get paid by the Insurance Company directly; not Medicare. These plans must be as good or Better than original Medicare. These are All Networks; HMO, PPO, etc
They all have co-pays, maybe a deductible on prescriptions; Most are $0.00 premium!
Yes, that is correct- many cost $0.00!!!
Nevertheless, it is a real challenge to figure out which one is best for you. You may even find couples each have different plans because of different needs or wants. A smart place to start is getting a comparison between keeping your employer coverage and getting Medicare options.

How: Medicare A & B is with the Federal Government (www.Medicare.gov) or 1-800-Medicare.
If neither of these options seems best for you, stop by your local office to apply!

Medicare Parts C or D, are NOT applied for at the Medicare office. They are provided by Medicare Approved Insurance companies. These companies, and there are many, have many options to chose from. Again, I recommend speaking with an Independent Agent. (There should be a 10 Question Review Process to help determine which option(s) are best for you- Then, start looking at particular plans)

Who: Work with an agent who understands BOTH SUPPLEMENT and ADVANTAGE plans (PartC)!
Both have many options, benefits, and hang ups. SO, getting a Complete Big Picture- is Very Valuable.
Note: If you are interested in the Advantage plans- call your Doctor’s Office and find out Exactly which plan they take. Also, know that there are plans that can provide Extra Help if you have COPD, Diabetes, Cardivascular Disease.
There are also plans to help with Low-Income situations as well.

James H Willis, III- Financial Planner -Insurances
James H Willis, III- Financial Planner -Insurances

I am an Independent Agent and know your options well (since 1988).