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Low-Cost Alternatives to Avoid Hospital Visits
The price of healthcare, especially medical services, can be costly. From monthly health insurance premiums to the price of prescription medications, the expenses add up, even if you have healthcare coverage. Emergency room visits are among the most expensive out-of-pocket costs to patients, as a high insurance deductible means that one visit to the ER can cost $200 or more. Individuals without insurance fare even worse with the actual cost of an emergency room visit averaging out to over $1,000. Now more than ever, people have incentive to take their health into their own hands. Learning about affordable and effective ways to avoid trips to a medical professional will save you money and time in the long run.
Lower Your Cholesterol and Blood Pressure
One of the most common reasons people visit an ER is because of chest pains. Oftentimes these shooting pains are symptom of a high cholesterol or high blood pressure. To avoid being admitted to the hospital and having expensive blood work done, manage your levels at home by making a few changes to your diet that are easy and will save you money. The easiest way to prevent a heart attack is to limit the amount of red meat you consume or eliminate it from your diet altogether. Replace expensive read meat with boneless chicken or adopt Meatless Mondays to experiment with cooking and eating lower-cost plant-based meals. Also, lowering your sodium intake to no more than 1500 mg per day will keep your blood pressure in check and reduce your risk of stroke.
Practice Mindful Eating
Speaking of eating, how you eat can be just as important as what you eat when it comes to avoiding health problems such as indigestion and an upset stomach; more common reasons for visits to an emergency room. To keep abdominal pains at bay, take time during your meals to chew your food wholly—18 chews per bite is recommended for easy digestion. Also, try to avoid doing other activities as you eat, such as watching TV, using your cellphone or even talking. Not only does one tend to overeat while practicing distracted eating, but it also presents a choking hazard—and a very expensive trip to the ER in an ambulance, indeed.
Do At-home Strength Training Exercises
Spraining your ankle or breaking a bone due to an accident is something that could happen to anyone. However, those with greater muscle strength throughout their bodies recover faster from injury. In addition, having strong muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones help to keep the body in proper alignment, thereby helping you to avoid accidents and the inevitable ER or urgent care visit that comes with them. There are many ways to strengthen your muscles through exercises, such as using machines or free weights at a gym. A lower-cost method for gaining strength is to use your own body weight to train. This can be done through low-impact exercises like yoga, swimming or Pilates. No need to visit a yoga studio for sign up for classes as there are thousands of videos online that teach beginners and experienced viewers alike how to properly execute the muscle stretching and strengthening moves.
Eat your fruits and veggies!
We have all heard by now how we need to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into our diet. This statement is as true today as it has ever been, even with the promotion of expensive superfoods and supplements. Getting your nutrients from fresh produce is healthier and more cost-effective than other products on the market. A great reason for getting in your fruits and veggies is to save you money on hospital visits due to common conditions such as a cold or the flu. The vitamins and minerals found in fruits and vegetables naturally boost your immunity, which is beneficial to warding off viruses and improving your overall health. An easy way to consume more fresh produce is by starting your day off with a homemade green smoothie made with spinach or other dark green leafy vegetables. The addition of fresh fruit such as bananas, peaches, and berries will make your smoothie tasty and full of healthful fiber.