The Cost of Medicine in America

First I am only relating what is/has happened to me.

I have high cholesterol.  I have tried diet to control it, but really didn’t put a lot of effort into it.  I exercise but knee problems prevent me from becoming the world’s next champion body builder, LOL!

Anyway, my doc has had me on several Statins to control my cholesterol and I relied heavily on them.  It required very little effort on my part, other than to swallow a pill.

But each time I am on a Statin, I end up with severe muscle pain.  So this recent visit resulted in a discussion about which would be better for me.  He decided to use Livalo, not as potent as the others, but far less side effects.

So I get to the pharmacy to pick up my meds.  First , they tell me they don’t carry it, but they  do check its cost for me.

$210.00 every friggin’ month as my co-pay!!!!!!!!

That is totally ABSURD!

Of course, I tell the pharmacist I cannot afford that…who can?.  Then I call my doc’s office and tell them the same thing.  I don’t know what he will order, but I know one thing……I’m sure going to change my ways….I plan to put forth more effort into losing weight and eating right.

I just might get lucky and not have to be on a Statin to lower my cholesterol.  I sure hope so.

Livalo

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The Inevitable Weight Gain After Weight Loss

It happens to the best of us. We will at some point gain some weight back after losing some. For some of us it is a little weight gain and for others of us it is more. Either way, it is a depressing place to find yourself.

I have gained about 10 pounds back. And I am not happy about it. So what do I need to do about it?

First, I need to analyze WHY I gained some weight back. Did I slack off on my exercise? No. Did I go back to my old eating habits? No. Then what was it? I quit smoking!! Which, in turn, lead to the munchies…more calories, even though healthy food, added to the weight gain.

Second, WHAT can I do about it? I need to get the munchies under control. Harder than it seems, but not impossible. I need to choose my snacks more wisely. Again, difficult, but not impossible. I need to perhaps add more exercise, especially when I feel a munchie craving coming on. I need to try diversion tactics.

The most important thing I need to do is NOT BEAT MYSELF UP OVER THE WEIGHT GAIN. It’s just another obstacle to overcome and I WILL overcome it. I won’t let this setback defeat me. Don’t let yours defeat you either.

See you on the good side of healthy.

walking

The Munchies! OMG!

Recently, hubby and I quit using tobacco products. Yay! We are using e-cigs, so we still get the nicotine, but in a safer format….and before someone starts warning about the propylene glycol being an ingredient in antifreeze, you need to look at what else it is used in and has been approved by the FDA.

I digress….I am here to talk about the munchies. Quitting tobacco has opened us both up to these insane, incredible desires for munching on any food available…healthy or not healthy. So we have had to arm ourselves with some tactics to defeat the munchies.

1. Get up and do something outside if the weather permits.

2. Clean house, vacuum, dust, sweep, etc.

3. Drink more water.

4. Take a drive somewhere.

5. Have low cal snacks available…carrot sticks, celery sticks, sugar free popcicles, watermelon cubes, cucumber slices, pickle spears, low cal fruit, etc.

6. Exercise a little more.

These are just some of the things we are attempting to do to keep the munchies at bay. And we still have not gone back to the tobacco.

fruit n veggies

Dealing with Discouragement and Disappointment

We have all been there, felt those overwhelming emotions of discouragement and disappointment when we haven’t succeeded in reaching a specific goal in our quest for a healthier lifestyle.

Sometimes it happens in our exercise routine or in the weight loss goals we set for ourselves.

I know in my exercise routine, I had decided to do two different things to get myself healthier. One, I would walk my dog daily. The other, I would ride a bike. The walking I have been able to do and get better at it. Of course, I have a dog that loves to go walking anytime of the day or nite and is willing to go the distance as long as I am able and willing to go the distance. BUT, the bike riding….well, let’s just say that is on a back burner. Why? Because I got the wrong size bike for my height and I have difficulty balancing it. Needless to say I was very discouraged and disappointed that I couldn’t keep that part of my exercise program going. I felt guilty that I had to cut that part of my exercise out until I realized that I was doing great with the other part. I had to change my attitude. So I can’t ride THIS bike. I’ll sell it and save for one more suited to me…even if it is an adult tricycle, so be it. Or I’ll just sell it and save for a treadmill that I can use in the house during bad weather. Whatever I do, I know that one part of my exercise program is working and I will put all of my concentration into that for the time being.

My weight loss goals have, at times, also been an area of discouragement and disappointment. Yes, I would love to go to bed and wake up in the morning 20 pounds lighter. But that AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN! I have set myself a goal of X number of pounds to lose per week, per month, per 6 months. Has that happened? No. Discouraged and disapointed…yes. But then I have to sit down and have a good long talk with myself. So I am one of those folks who doesn’t lose weight easily. What can I do about it? Change my attitude about it. I had to realize that ANY weight loss is a GOOD thing. I had to look at what has happened so far in the past 6 months. I HAVE lost 24 pounds. I AM wearing a smaller size. I AM moving more. I HAVE a cholesterol number in the good zone. I HAVE lost a lot of inches.

Dealing with discouragement and disappointment is a matter of ATTITUDE! Change your attitude when the Double D’s attack. Look at the problem from a different point of view. What can you do about it? Is it worth fretting over? Are there other options? Who knows or cares (besides me) that I haven’t been able to accomplish ONE of my goals? When you look at the problem differently, the Double D’s tend to fizzle and stall.

Remember exercise routines and weight loss goals are not set in stone. They are fluid and our attitude must be fluid too.

See you on the good side of healthy.
bgg-14

Discipline

We have all heard the word, but what does it actually mean?

Here are a few definitions:

1. Punishment…something we are all familiar with. Either, we experienced it first hand as children or we used it on our own children. In this instance, discipline can take many forms from timeout to a whack on the butt for bad behaviour. I know with mine, as small children a well placed whack on the butt usually served to correct the problem. When they became teens, I had to come up with ingenious ways to correct the problem. For example, when they were young teens we went to a department store looking for a wedding gift. We were in the china department and they decided it would be fun to punch each other in the arm. All I could think of was that they were going to break something expensive that I would have to pay for. So I leaned over and whispered that if they didn’t stop, I would pick my nose in front of God and everyone else and wipe it on their shirts. The look of utter horror on their faces was absolutely priceless. It worked!

2. A system of rules governing conduct or activity. We’ve all seen this in the form of signs in and around our community. For example, speed limit signs, or no shirt, no shoes, no service in restaurants, age restrictions in bars or clubs or movie theaters, no solicitors, no food or drink allowed in store, etc.

3. Self control. This one is the HARDEST one to enforce. There will be no one to tell you that you haven’t done what you were supposed to do or not do. Only you can do that. And this is the one we need the most when we are striving to become a more healthy individual.

We need self control when faced with a vast array of food choices that could undermine our healthy lifestyle. And we need self control to maintain our exercise program or even push it beyond our comfort zone.

Self control comes from practice and time. We must practice, daily, our good, healthy food choices. And we must force ourselves to embark on our daily exercise program to achieve our goals. With time the discipline becomes easier because it has become a habit. And everyone knows habits are hard to break.

Keep practicing your self control and you will see a new you.

See you on the good side of healthy.

walking

Some Days You Just Don’t Want to…..

…exercise! And that’s OK!

I had one of those days yesterday. Of course, the rain did a lot to reinforce that idea. I just didn’t feel like going for a walk or doing much of anything else other than knitting.

However, I can’t and won’t make that a habit. It’s OK to take a break from exercise. Some days you just need to do something else or nothing at all. I spent most of the day working on a new sock pattern (my design, BTW). I did stop long enough to help hubby rearrange all the DVDs and do the dishes (no dishwasher, except me). So I did get some movement in, not cardio movement, but at least movement. I did monitor my food and water intake and didn’t exceed my limit. So that was good.

Today, however, I did take my dog on her 2 mile walk. Got my cardio in early. Later this coming week we plan to visit the Parade of Homes in our area. So I will have some extra walking in.

Sometimes you just have to change your routine to keep from being bored out of your mind.

See you on the good side of healthy.

SS6a

No Food is Taboo!

I can’t count the number of special “diets” I have been on trying to lose weight. I think I have tried them all at one time or another in an attempt to lose weight. And all of them have restricted or totally eliminated certain foods.

Yes, you should monitor the types of foods you eat. Yes, you should monitor the number of calories you eat. And, yes, you should exercise daily. This is not difficult. There are many websites out there in internet land that can help you. I use “MyFitnessPal”. It’s easy for me to plug in the foods I eat and the exercise I do on a daily basis.

Some folks do well and lose weight just counting calories. Some folks do not, me among those. You have to use what works for you.

I prefer a low carb, high protein diet. BUT, I have high cholesterol and am on medication to keep it under control. So how do I do that?

First of all, I am a label reader. Before I buy any kind of processed food, I check the label. Then I ask myself, “Is there another food that is better?” For example: White bread, high in carbs, low in protein. So I substitute with an all grain, high fiber bread which is healthier for me. But that doesn’t mean I can eat bread all day long. It’s still high in carbs. So should I eliminate it altogether? No. It has its place in the scheme of things.

Second, I monitor the types of protein and carbs I eat. We all know that meat is loaded with protein, but is all protein the same? No. Chicken and fish are high in protein, but lower in calories (and cholesterol) than pork and beef. I love eggs, but hate the egg substitute. So I don’t eat eggs everyday. I limit them, but I don’t exclude them from my diet.

Same goes for the carbs. I stick with the lower carb veggies (green veggies) and lower carb fruits. Does that mean I can’t have the higher carb veggies and fruits? No. I can have them, but only in moderation.

The key to any diet then, is to monitor what and how much you eat. Some foods are “free” foods (you can eat as much as you want). Some can only be eaten in moderation. BUT NO FOOD IS TABOO!

Just monitor what you eat. Keep track of it. And don’t forget to exercise!

See you on the good side of healthy.
Squash 017 A