Dear friend, I hope all is well with you and that you are as healthy in body as you are strong in spirit. 3 John 1:2 NLT
Annually, we are required to participate in an insurance health screening and assessment with a given deadline of August 31st. The screening assesses four metrics: BMI, Blood Pressure, Cholesterol, and Hemoglobin A1C. In June, I received the postcard indicating the 30-day warning notice: the health screening/assessment was due by July 31st. As I reflected on my sedentary lifestyle, an increase in fast food intake, I begin to dread the assessment and rationalized that the insurance company was utilizing tactics for failure. I needed that additional 30 days.
I started a mental debate on how well I had done within the past 6 weeks and consoled myself by focusing on a recent 10 lb weight loss. I resolved that I would have to deal with my poor choices, and suffer the consequences. Nevertheless, I still had 30 days and could make the needed changes. Realistically, it was very hard to break the fast food habit. I was accustomed to ordering at the drive-thru, and my taste buds craved the high-calorie delicacies. In fact, on the night of July 4th, I was still eating a midnight snack at 2am. At that point, I determined that I was totally out of control, and prayed for God to help me overcome the desire for unhealthy food.
With three weeks left, I was determined that I would make healthier food choices, and increase my activity. Kudos to me, I purchased a Fitbit and ate close to veganism for two of the three remaining weeks. I scheduled my online appointment with Quest lab on July 27th, four days prior to the deadline. What I did not realize is that my recent efforts would not erase a year of poor choices. When I received the results, I had failed all four of the metrics. The parameters for the metrics were lowered to reflect an optimal level of wellness. I reviewed my results repeatedly. The level of disappointment that I felt was so overwhelming that I cried. Fast food had led to an increase in my triglyceride level of twice the level of the previous year. My HDL (good cholesterol) was still good, but my LDL (bad cholesterol) was really bad.
The impact of my lifestyle stared back at me. So, I pulled myself together and realized that I am not helpless in this situation. How important are my health and well-being? It is now my top priority. I am thankful that I have an insurance company that cares enough about their subscribers to require annual assessments. I am still facing the daily struggle of not choosing fast food chicken nuggets that were designed especially for me. However, I have made the decision to decrease unhealthy choices to once a month. I have replaced fast food with well-balanced meals. Not only do I feel better, but I have also lost an additional five lbs within two weeks.
Resolving Unexpected Life Events with God
Refer to Devotionals: Healthy Bites, 5/13/19 and Healthy Bites: Making Improvements, 5/16/19 for Health Updates