Exercise — it’s not just about losing weight

43561065_SHitting the gym or strolling around the park is obviously a great way to burn calories, but the additional benefits of a regular exercise routine often go overlooked. Are you aware of all the positive things a good workout can do for your body and your health?

A regular exercise program can help to lower your risk of a host of health conditions, including heart disease and diabetes. Daily activity also helps boost the production of high-density lipoprotein, often referred to as “good cholesterol,” while helping to reduce unhealthy triglycerides. This in turn improves blood flow and circulation, keeping your system in better shape.

Staying active will keep your body stronger and help you develop muscle mass. This in turn protects you from falls as you get older, and can delay the onset of arthritis or help reduce the severity of symptoms. Additionally, immunity can be improved by exercising regularly. Exerting yourself means your body must work harder to transport oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and organs. This regular strain helps make your system work with more efficiency while boosting the performance of your heart and lungs. When you improve the function of these vital organs, you will find more energy available to tackle daily chores or harder workouts.

A solid sweat promotes the release of chemicals in your bloodstream that can help combat anxiety and stress. If life or work is causing you a great deal of stress, one of the most effective antidotes is exercise. In addition to relieving pressure, exercise also can help you sleep more soundly. Regular physical exertion can assist you in falling asleep faster while deepening your REM cycle. Need more reasons to get out there and get some exercise? Check out this list.

The most important health insurance terms, explained

42257276 - doctor in surgery with male patient using digital tabletWhen you’re shopping for a health insurance plan, it’s easy to get confused by all the terminology. Here’s a guide to four of the most important health insurance terms that you need to know:

Co-payment. A co-payment is a fixed amount that you are responsible for paying for a medical service. Some health insurance plans require policyholders to reach a health care spending threshold — called a deductible — before they start paying co-payments for various medical services. For example, after meeting your deductible, you may pay only a $30 co-payment for a routine office visit, with the health plan paying the rest of the cost. Many plans have co-payments for prescriptions as well.

Premium. This is the amount you must pay for your health care coverage each month, whether you pay for your health insurance coverage yourself or through a deduction from your paycheck. You also pay your premiums whether or not you use your health insurance plan that month.

Deductible. Here’s where things start to get a bit confusing. A deductible is the amount of money you’re required to pay for your health care before your insurance company begins to pay its share of the cost. Deductibles vary among health plans. In some cases, deductibles do not apply to routine office visits and/or preventative care.

Coinsurance. This is the percentage of the total cost of a medical service that you’re responsible for after you’ve paid your plan’s deductible. Suppose you’ve already paid out your plan’s deductible and your coinsurance is 30 percent. For a $2,000 hospital visit, you would be responsible for $600.

We believe it’s crucial that consumers understand their health insurance plans. If you have any questions about how your plan works, please call us at (303) 663-9991. We are happy to help you.