Health Insurance or Insuring Your Health?

Jay Stillman

3 min read

With Rising Needs, Will Crumbling Public Healthcare Work for Boomers?

This week saw yet another landmark Supreme Court decision, overturning the government’s role in mandating exactly what coverage employers such as Hobby Lobby must provide to their workers. While the supporters of the law may have seen Obamacare as a solution for all Americans, in practice, there are many who are exempt.

The expansion of Medicare is already putting a strain on the system with not enough doctors to provide care. Another government health provider, the Veterans’ Administration, is also having problems. Months-on-end waiting times have resulted in deaths due to lack of care, and a solution is still far in the offing.

If you are one of the baby boomer generation, born between 1946 and 1964, what can you expect from government-mandated health care? As your age-group increasingly falls into the senior category, there will be fewer taxpayers paying into the system. As it is, many qualify for health care payment exemptions and currently do not pay for health insurance.

The population of doctors is also declining, while the demand for services increases as boomers age. According to the Centers for Disease Control:

“A 2010 CDC study projected that as many as one of three U.S. adults could have diabetes by 2050 if current trends continue.”

Diabetes is linked to many conditions including high blood pressure, stroke, heart attack, and Alzheimer’s disease. The annual cost of diabetes care alone is about $250 billion, but it will rise as the population ages. Tennessee is located in the area of the country with the highest rates in the country—over 10% of the population is afflicted. If you are a black male over 65, your chances of having diabetes are over 30%—that’s nearly at that one-in-three level predicted by the CDC. The trend of increasing high rates of diabetes since 1980 continues, despite or because of public health policies.

Over 230,000 people die of diabetes and its complications each year, according to the American Diabetes Association, but some estimates put the rate at about 4,000 deaths each day.

The picture is not pretty, with more people requiring care, and fewer providers and longer waiting times for appointments.

You may have insurance, but insurance is not health care and health care isn’t wellness. By the time you get to the doctor, you are already in poor health. Wouldn’t it be smarter just to stay healthy?

What’s the best way to beat diabetes? By eliminating your sugar intake, you can live longer and stay healthy. Cut out sugared sodas and juices. Added sugar is not always obvious—it may be called corn syrup, cane juice, glucose, fructose, dextrose, maltose or sucrose. Read labels and get rid of products like ketchup that have an even higher percentage of sugar than chocolate bars.

The best way to beat the system is to stay out of it! If you are in your fifties or older diabetes may be a threat that robs you of your health and your independence. Stay fit by cutting out sugars and remaining active. Neither an insurance plan, nor doctors and medication will guarantee your wellness.  It’s up to you!