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Photo used under Flickr Creative Commons license courtesy of bodytel.

 

People can get diabetes at any age and, according to the American Diabetes Association, 79 million Americans have prediabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Prediabetes is not just a higher glucose level than normal— it’s an increased risk of becoming diabetic, which increases your chances of developing heart disease and stroke. Type 2 diabetes is more common with age, and even more so if you are overweight. What can you do to reduce your risk?

 

Get Tested
The best way to find out whether or not you’re at risk is to get your glucose levels checked. Normal levels range anywhere between 70 and 120.

 

Live Healthier
Up your lean protein and vegetable intake, and swap your sweets for healthy fruit. And get moving! Every little step helps, even just taking the stairs once a week. Taking control of your diet and exercise is the best way to keep risk at bay, and losing excess pounds can get your glucose levels back to normal.

 

For additional information, visit the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse (NDIC).

 

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in a Humana plan depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits may change each year.

 

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call Customer Care at the number on the back of your Humana member ID card. 

 

Esta información está disponible gratuitamente en otros idiomas. Comuníquese con el Departamento de Atención al Cliente llamando al número en el dorso de su tarjeta de identificación de afiliado de Humana.

Photo used under creative use license courtesy of Audrey.

Guest post written by Liz Della Croce of The Lemon Bowl.

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, we wanted to share a few simple and approachable ways that may reduce your risk of cancer. Breast cancer is the second most common cancer among women in the United States after skin cancer, so chances are you or someone you know is affected by this disease.

The good news is that there are several steps you can take to help increase your chances of avoiding the “big C”:

  • Maintain a Healthy Weight:increase your riskof breast cancer. More specifically, carrying excess fat around your waistline has been shown to pose an even greater risk. Use this Healthy Body Calculator
  • Exercise Regularly: Make exercise a priority and find time to get active 3-4 days a week. Whether you prefer to walk, play tennis, run with a friend or dance for an hour at Zumba, just get moving! In fact, as little as 1 hour and 15 minutes to 2½ hours of brisk walking a week has been shown
  • Eat Clean and Limit Processed Foods: By eating a diet rich in whole foods and meats free of antibiotics and added hormones you can help slash your odds of cancer. According to the President’s Cancer Panel, a diet high in processed foods and conventionally grown produce increases your exposure to pesticides and carcinogens, raising your risk of cancer. If organic, grass-fed beef is out of your price range, try incorporating alternative protein sources into your diet such as beans, nuts or dairy.

 

What are your best tips for incorporating these healthy lifestyle changes? We’d love to hear from you.

 


Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in a Humana plan depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits may change each year.

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call Customer Care at the number on the back of your Humana member ID card. 13

 

Esta información está disponible gratuitamente en otros idiomas. Comuníquese con el Departamento de Atención al Cliente llamando al número en el dorso de su tarjeta de identificación de afiliado de Humana.

Photo used under creative use license courtesy of A Health Blog.

 

Guest post written by Anne-Marie Kovacs & Audrey van Petegem of The Succulent Wife. HumanaVitality is not an insurance product. This material is provided for informational use only. You should consult with your doctor.

While we may not be able to ward off brain disease, we can certainly exercise our brains to keep them as alert and nimble as possible. Our brains can age gracefully. To research this post, I sought the wisdom of my most trusted source on the subject: Ruth Curran, founder of Cranium Crunches

About 10 years ago, Ruth suffered a car crash.  Though she survived, it left her to deal with traumatic brain injuries.  She struggled to form sentences and even thoughts. As part of her long-term rehab, Ruth chose to get her Master’s in cognitive psychology, and ultimately created her company to advise others on how to improve their cognitive skills, no matter their circumstances.

“Brain health is much about living a fuller, richer life. When you think about nourishing your brain and keeping it healthy, you are talking about chemicals and electricity. The key words for brain health are ‘activity’ and ‘balance’” says Ruth.

Here are Ruth’s five golden rules to enhance brain health:

  • Don’t get too comfortable - Recent studies show that to stay sharp as we age, we need to continually challenge ourselves intellectually. Play games, take a class and undertake complicated tasks or hobbies like learning a new language, playing a new musical instrument or even taking a creative writing or coding class.
  • Shake things up - Try new things or do old things in new ways. For example go through the supermarket in the opposite way you usually do or brush your teeth with the other hand. Ruth says, “We have our regular mental maps that we draw upon, but your brain needs to know it has other options.” So prepare yourself for that by learning how to solve the same problem in a different way. It’s about neuroplasticity, i.e., keeping your brain nimble and flexible.
  • Release dopamine  – Besides all the good things physical exercise does for our bodies, exercise also nourishes the brain with good chemical and electrical activity. With exercise, the feel-good, life-enhancing hormone called dopamine is released along other neurochemicals to help create balance. We are happiest and smartest when we are balanced. Listening to complicated music—like improvisation jazz & blues, or classical music—and engaging more senses more often release dopamine.
  • Reduce stress - We know that stress releases cortisol and too much cortisol destroys the chemical balance in our brain. Practicing yoga, meditation, and guided relaxation can help reduce our stress levels AND cortisol levels. Ruth says, “It’s all about keeping the balance of your neurochemicals. You don’t want too many highs or too many lows. But Ruth warns that balance is also lost when we don’t challenge ourselves or if we find ourselves in a rut. It’s like self-fulfilling prophecy: the less we challenge our brain, the less it will respond. She says, “The best way to nourish your brain is to live a full life.”
  • Live a fuller sensory life - We should experience things more to light up those areas of our brains that process our sensory experiences. Studies demonstrate that different parts of the brain work with different senses, i.e. sight stimulates a part of the brain, while hearing, touching, smelling, tasting all activate other parts of brain. The best way to activate more of the brain is to activate more of the senses. This article suggests some fun ways to do that throughout each day.

 

It is rewarding to keep your brain healthy, so let’s go!

 

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in a Humana plan depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits may change each year.

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call Customer Care at the number on the back of your Humana member ID card.

 

Esta información está disponible gratuitamente en otros idiomas. Comuníquese con el Departamento de Atención al Cliente llamando al número en el dorso de su tarjeta de identificación de afiliado de Humana.

go365admin

Prevent High Cholesterol

Posted by go365admin Sep 9, 2015

 

 

What’s the first thing you think about when you hear about cholesterol? You may link it to a disease caused by foods like eggs and shrimp. Today we want to help you understand what cholesterol is, why it’s important that you know about this disease, and give you some tips on how to keep it under control when your levels are high.

 

Let’s start by defining what cholesterol is. According to WebMD, cholesterol is a fatty substance created by the liver, and which is also present in certain foods. It’s a vital substance for the body, but too much of it can pose a health risk. Here are some tips on how to keep it under control and reduce it to healthy levels:

 

Know Your Levels and Set a Target
The first thing you have to do is get screened to learn your cholesterol levels. From there, set a realistic goal with a predetermined timeframe. It’s important to you’re your cholesterol regularly so you can see your progress.

 

Medication Could be an Option
Sometimes dieting or changing your eating habits is not enough and you need the additional support of medication. It’s important to consult your doctor about your options.

 

Improve Your Good Cholesterol Levels
Research shows that exercise helps increase “good” cholesterol levels up to 10 percent. You don’t need to run a marathon to see results – walking a little each day can help.

 

Avoid Saturated Fat
This one step can make a big impact: lower your intake of saturated fat to help lower your bad cholesterol. A good tip is to use more olive oil or canola oil instead of vegetable oils, butter, margarine or lard.

 

Time for Some Fiber
Fiber is everywhere! You can find it in fruits, vegetables, and foods rich in whole grains. Fiber is a powerful ally in lowering cholesterol, and a great way to reduce or maintain healthy cholesterol levels.

 

Sources:

http://www.webmd.com/cholesterol-management/guide/cholesterol-basics

 

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in a Humana plan depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits may change each year.

 

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call Customer Care at the number on the back of your Humana member ID card.

 

Esta información está disponible gratuitamente en otros idiomas. Comuníquese con el Departamento de Atención al Cliente llamando al número en el dorso de su tarjeta de identificación de afiliado de Humana.

March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month.  Did you know that colorectal cancer is the third most common type of non-skin cancer in both men and women?  If you’re between 50 and 75 years of age, you are at risk and should be getting screened regularly—early detection can save your life. Plus, you’ll earn 500 Vitality Bucks, just for getting screened. Here is what you need to know:

Why are colorectal screenings important?
Colorectal cancer typically develops from abnormal growths (polyps) in the colon or rectum. Even without symptoms, regularly scheduled screenings can detect abnormalities before they become cancerous. Colorectal cancer is more treatable if it’s found before it has a chance to spread.

Who should get them?
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends colorectal cancer screening for men and women aged 50–75. Consider getting checked out sooner if any of the following applies to you:

  • You or a close relative have a history with colorectal polyps or colorectal cancer.
  • You have inflammatory bowel disease.
  • You have any genetic syndromes that are known to lead to colorectal cancer.

Who is at risk of developing colorectal cancer?
The exact causes of colorectal cancer have not been determined; however, it is known that the following factors can play a part:

  • Age: Colorectal cancer can happen at any age, but most cases are in men and women over age 50.
  • Polyps:
  • Personal history: Colorectal cancer survivors are at risk as well as women with a history of cancer.
  • Nutrition: There is evidenceHummus and Veggie Pita Sandwich
  • National Cancer Institute, regular exercise may help fight against colorectal cancer, and those who are less active may be putting themselves at risk.  Exercise regularly with a fitness device, and you’ll earn Vitality Bucks for meeting your daily fitness minimum.  Plus, set a goal to get more active with HumanaVitality, and you can earn Vitality Bucks for completing it.
  • Smoking: Smokers should add this to one of many reasons to quit– long-term cigarette smoking can increase your risk of colorectal cancer.  If you’re a smoker, set a HumanaVitality goal today to quit smoking and enroll in a health coaching program for extra help.

 

Sources:

http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/colorectal/basic_info/screening/

http://www.cancer.org/acs/groups/content/@epidemiologysurveilance/documents/document/acspc-029771.pdf

www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/detection/colorectal-screening

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/colon-cancer/in-depth/colon-cancer-screening/art-20046825

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in a Humana plan depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits may change each year.

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call Customer Care at the number on the back of your Humana member ID card.

 

Esta información está disponible gratuitamente en otros idiomas. Comuníquese con el Departamento de Atención al Cliente llamando al número en el dorso de su tarjeta de identificación de afiliado de Humana.

If you are medically unable to perform these tasks, you can call customer care and we will work with you to find another way to earn Vitality Bucks. Please call the member service number on the back of your Humana member ID card.

 

In honor of Heart Disease Awareness Month (February), here are some facts that may help you live healthier for longer. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the US—especially among women. While it’s not contagious, it is hereditary and onset can happen at any age. The earlier you understand your risk, the sooner you can take action towards prevention, and earn rewards with HumanaVitality® while you’re at it.

What exactly is Heart disease?
Heart disease is a group of conditions that affect the structure and functions of the heart. If left untreated, over time it can result in deadly events like heart attack or stroke.

How can it be prevented?
Because heart disease is generally manageable, your best line of defense is education and prevention. By utilizing several features of the HumanaVitality program, you may reduce your risk of heart disease

1. Know your stats: Get yearly Vitality Checks to learn and manage your BMI (body mass index), blood pressure, cholesterol, and glucose levels.

2. Set goals: Once you know your stats, set recommended goals to reach or stay within a healthy range on all of your biometrics.

3. Get a move on: Regular exercise is a great way to fight heart disease. Small changes like taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or planning a walking date with a friend are smart ways to take better care of your heart. Plus, earn Vitality Bucks  when you connect an approved fitness device and wear it to reach the daily fitness minimum!

4. Eat right: Protect yourself by eating a balanced diet. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends the following servings:

  • Fruits and vegetables:  At least 4-5 cups a day
  • Fish (preferably oily fish, like salmon): At least two 3.5-ounce servings a week
  • Fiber-rich whole grains: At least three 1-ounce servings a day
  • Nuts, legumes and seeds: At least 4 servings a week, unsalted whenever possible

Improving nutrition can make direct and positive impacts on your cholesterol and blood pressure, factors that may lead to increased risk of Heart Disease. Try one of our heart-healthy recipes such as a Grilled Wild Salmon with Spicy Peppers, Goat Cheese & Chives or Pistachio Crusted Chicken to keep your heart in good shape!

Sources:

CDC
Heart.org
Go Red for Women
Health Central

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, PPO, and PFFS plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in a Humana plan depends on contract renewal. This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits may change each year.

This information is available for free in other languages. Please call Customer Care at the number on the back of your Humana member ID card.

 

Esta información está disponible gratuitamente en otros idiomas. Comuníquese con el Departamento de Atención al Cliente llamando al número en el dorso de su tarjeta de identificación de afiliado de Humana.

If you are medically unable to perform these tasks, you can call customer care and we will work with you to find another way to earn Vitality Bucks. Please call the member service number on the back of your Humana member ID card.