Diet and Excercise can Control Health Care Costs-part 2Posted: February 22, 2011
Diet and Exercise can Control Health Care Costs-part 2. I just can’t stay away from this subject. It’s my real passion (and you thought it was health insurance!)
Okay I admit, I’m still bored with PPACA (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act), but I’ll get back on track with that soon for those of you who miss the topic.
For now, I want to talk about something else when it comes to controlling your health care costs. Yes, it’s still about diet and exercise in general, but this time more about diet. Not diet, in the starve yourself until you’re thin kind of thing, but changing what you eat, or more directly adding something good to your daily repertoire.
A few years back I got into the raw food craze. I really liked it, but I missed my baked potatoes and slow cooked black beans and this great vegetarian chili I used to make. But one thing I noticed about eating raw foods is how much some things improved. For instance my moods improved. Most of the time when I talk to clients on the phone I try to stay upbeat (which is really hard when I’m constantly informing you about the rate increases the insurance carriers are doling out!) But I have this nagging memory of my fourth grade teacher, Miss Viano, telling me that I was a moody cranky kid. I’m not denying what Miss Viano accused me of, more than likely she was right. But I try to be cognizant of that moodiness and when I noticed that changing my diet made a difference, wow, I was impressed.
Changing my diet just made me feel better all over and it helped me to keep weight off. Keeping the weight off makes it easier to work out and working out helps me keep the weight off too. My cholesterol numbers improved too. I’m one of those with “naturally” high cholesterol (thanks Mom!) and it didn’t seem to matter what I did, the numbers would come down a little here and there, but nothing significant.
Eating raw foods opened my eyes to new ideas and I found new restaurants, Cafe Gratitude in Berkeley, Greens Restaurant in San Francisco. I also noticed there are zero restaurants in the Walnut Creek area that are vegetarian. Most restaurants have vegetarian dishes on their menus, but not a single vegetarian restaurant. Maybe the suburbs just aren’t ready for that yet.
Staying with a raw food diet can be really difficult. My husband, Jim, is a great cook and when he cooks, it’s never raw. Everything he makes is delicious food. We can go to a restaurant and if I like something, I’ll give him a taste and he can duplicate and even improve the taste at home. Yes, I am a lucky woman!
GREEN SMOOTHIES ARE TASTY!
One thing that has stuck with me through the whole idea of raw food is green smoothies. I drink a green smoothie for breakfast almost every single day. My husband makes one too. I talked to a friend about green smoothies who runs a cafe inside of Herrick Hospital in Berkeley, and he has added green smoothies to his menu. The idea came when I found a really good book, Green for Life, by Victoria Boutenko, that has tons and tons of green smoothie recipes. Even though I eat cooked foods as well (but never meat for me) I still try to incorporate raw foods like green smoothies and raw salads into my diet everyday.
Here’s my favorite recipe, but get the book and read it. There is very important information about changing the greens in your smoothie: 2 cups water, 2 big handfuls of organic spinach, 1 organic apple, 1 banana, 1/2 cup of frozen organic blueberries from Trader Joes. Throw everything in your blender and let it go until it looks smooth.
Enjoy your green smoothie and watch your health improve too.
Next time I talk about Controlling Health Care Costs, I will give you some book recommendations. Taking control of your health can be easier than you think!