Health care spending reached an all time high of 18.2% of GDP in the United States in June of 2011. This is far higher than a number of developed countries throughout the world. Who is responsible? Do we blame the health care industry? Or are we all partially responsible for the poor health of the country?
Five years ago, I was a college athlete, trying to find my way into the lineup. I was struggling with horrible knee and foot pain, preventing me from playing at my peak. I tried a number of different things; tape, braces, medications, orthotics, and all of these traditional practices failed me. A foot doctor recommended surgery, but I thought there had to be another way. Being a curious young man, I searched vigorously for an answer. I stumbled upon barefoot shoes and ordered a pair as a last resort. This led me down a path of alternative solutions to traditional options.
What Are They?
Vibram Five Fingers are essentially fortified toe socks. They simulate being barefoot, taking the user back to a natural gait. Shoes had contributed to my pain because of their shape and structure. The dropped heel on my new barefoot shoes led to a midfoot strike. This lined up my body, putting me back into a natural position. Within a couple of weeks my pain had disappeared. Once I returned to my natural body mechanics, my muscles and joints healed quickly.
I paid $70 for my Vibram Five Fingers five years ago, and I still use them today when I feel pain approaching. They saved me from requiring surgery and from contributing to the bloated health care industry. They may have saved my athletic career too.
There are a number of similar ways you can avoid getting hurt or sick by taking care of your body. Proper exercise is a great way to avoid trips to the doctor. It is proven that running, walking, lifting weights, yoga and many other activities can contribute to a long, healthy life. We often get caught up in the rush of life that we lose sight of our health. Are you working out to stay healthy?
Certainly good nutrition and positive personal habits contribute to better health. What you put into your body is what you are going to get out. Obesity has run rampant in the United States. If you want to avoid sickness, you need to pay attention to how you are fueling your body. One of the biggest contributors to our health is what we eat and drink. Spending a little extra time and money at the grocery store can go a long way towards adding time to your life and saving money on health care costs.
How Do You Stay Healthy?
I needed an answer to my knee and foot pain in college, and I went through a number of different failed avenues before finding my solution. In what ways have you done the same? Your health is your most important asset in life. It is what keeps you alive and vibrant. What one change can you make that will improve your health and save you money? Decreasing your dependence on health care is essential to your long-term economic health. Be creative, you may be surprised at the results.