Tag Archives: health

National Financial Wellness Month

National Financial Wellness Month

It’s National Financial Wellness Month, and we have tips about taking care of your finances, especially as they relate to health insurance.

Using Your FSA

If your health insurance features a flexible spending account (FSA), you could save on all kinds of health services and products.

Your FSA and the New Year


Health savings accounts (HSAs) are becoming more common, and if your plan has one, it could help you with your medical expenses and offset high deductibles. 

Saving with an HSA


You might not realize how much money you’re losing going to the emergency room when you should be going to urgent care. Know where to go and save.

Skipping the ER


You know you pay a premium for your health insurance, but do you understand all of your out-of-pocket costs, like deductibles, copays, and coinsurance? Make sense of what you pay.

Paying Out-of-Pocket Costs


Do you know what happens after you get care? Make sense of the claims process, how your doctor gets paid, and what you’ll owe.

Paying Healthcare Costs


Making financial plans for your future can help you be ready for retirement, Medicare, and medical emergencies. Be prepared.

Making Financial Plans


Financial wellness can impact other parts of your health too. These tips can help you track your spending, set goals, and more.

Recognizing Early Labor

Recognizing Early Labor

Early labor begins before you’ve finished 37 weeks of pregnancy, and babies born this early can have lifelong or life-threatening health problems.

What Happens

If you go into early labor, you will likely be given meds to delay or stop it. In some cases, it can be delayed long enough to transport you to a hospital that has a . You may also be given medications that can improve the baby’s health if they come early.

Warning Signs

  • Contractions – Your abdomen will tighten like a fist every 10 minutes or more.
  • Change in Vaginal Discharge – You might leak fluid or bleed from your vagina.
  • Pelvic Pressure – This might feel like your baby is pushing down.
  • Cramps – These might feel like your period or like abdominal cramps with or without diarrhea.
  • Backache – You might feel a low, full backache.

What to Do

Call your doctor or go to the hospital right away if you’re going into labor or have any of the warning signs. They may tell you to:

  • Come into the office or go to the hospital for a checkup
  • Stop what you’re doing and rest on your side for an hour
  • Drink 2 to 3 glasses of water or juice

If your symptoms get worse or do not go away after an hour, call your doctor back or go to the hospital. If the symptoms improve, relax for the rest of the day.

National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week

National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week

It’s National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week, and adding freshly squeezed juices to your diet can be a great way to get more vitamins and nutrients from fruits and veggies.

First up, Glowing Skin Green Juice sweetened by apple is great for staying hydrated.

Glowing Skin Green Juice


Make this Super Healthy Vegan Orange Julius at home for a healthy treat.

Super Healthy Vegan Orange Julius
Image and Recipe via Vegan Vigilante


This refreshing Anti-Inflammatory Juice will have you dreaming of warmer weather.

Fresh Anti-Inflammatory Juice


Beautiful pink Beet Ginger Detox Juice is perfect for sneaking more veggies into your kids’ diets.

Image and Recipe via The Harvest Kitchen


Get your daily dose of Vitamin C with this green Fresh Kiwi-Grape Juice.

Fresh Kiwi-Grape Juice
Image and Recipe via Martha Stewart


Lighten up your lemon and feel like you’re at the spa with this Cleansing Cucumber Lemonade.

Cleansing Cucumber Lemonade


Help your immune system be prepared for winter colds with an extra dose of Vitamins A and C in Winter Vitamin-Boosting Juice.

Winter Vitamin Boosting Juice

Healthy Resolutions like Fitness

Vantage Point: Healthy Resolutions Without the Cost

What just happened? I blinked, and all of a sudden, it’s 2018! The holidays came and went, and now it’s time to go back to our normal routines. I’m personally excited for spring to get here. I’m over this cold.

As I go back to my routine, I think of what I’m going to do differently this year. It is very cliché, but I really do look back on my previous year and reflect on what I can improve on for 2018. We can improve in every aspect of our life: relationships, work, finances, and health.

We all try to set goals and keep them for the entire year. But sometimes we set unrealistic goals, or we just don’t try hard enough. The most common goal I hear is having a healthier lifestyle. We all have at least one unhealthy habit that we want to kick to the curb. As I get older, I realize it is not about looking good or having “rock hard” abs, it’s about being healthy and strong.

There are so many ways we can have an active lifestyle. Many people would join a gym to reach that goal, but what happens if you can’t afford a gym membership? And the older we get, the harder it is to do heavy lifting or the more dangerous it is to use a treadmill.

We are so lucky to have an organization like the Wellness Place in the Wenatchee Valley. Its mission is “[t]o improve and enhance the health and well-being of community members through programs and education; inspiring every person to live their best life now.” Their current programs include targeting and supporting cancer patients, Stay Active and Independent for Life (SAIL), and diabetes support services.

The SAIL program started in 2006 and focuses on balance and fitness for those 65 and older. Exercises that improve strength, balance, and fitness are the most important activities you can do to stay active and reduce your chance of falling as you age.

These classes are offered all over the greater Wenatchee area, and they’re no cost to the attendees. It is a great opportunity to kick off a healthier lifestyle for free. Learn more about the classes and when and where they take place and start your new year the right way.

Jessica Arroyo, born and raised in the Wenatchee Valley, is a Medicare community liaison for Health Alliance, serving Chelan, Douglas, Grant, and Okanogan counties in Washington. During her time off, she enjoys spending time with her husband and infant son.

Holiday Food Safety Tips

Holiday Food Safety Tips

Are you cooking for a crowd this holiday season? In honor of Food Service Safety Month, we can help you protect your guests with these helpful holiday food safety tips.

Keep hot food hot and cold food cold while serving guests with things like slow cookers and ice trays.

Put leftovers away after eating. Toss perishable foods that are left out for more than 2 hours.

Putting Away Leftovers


Make sure you’re cleaning produce properly before you start cooking.

Cleaning Before Cooking in the Holiday Season

Cleaning Before Eating


Do you know how to cook safely, like avoiding cross-contamination? Brush up for holiday meals.

Safe Holiday Food Prep

Preparing Your Food Safely


Cooking meats to the right internal temperature could be the difference between a happy holiday and a disaster.

Cooking Thoroughly During the Holiday Season

Hot Enough


Fight food waste in your leftovers this holiday season by storing food properly, using your freezer, and more.

Making the Most of Holiday Leftovers

Fight Food Waste


How long are all those leftovers and special ingredients good for? We can help.

When to Eat and When to Toss Holiday Leftovers

Decoding Expiration Dates

Exercise Just Right for You

For Providers: Talking Exercise with Patients

Exercise has been a part of daily life for John Kim, a Carle family nurse practitioner, from an early age, but he realizes that’s not the case for everyone.

Kim, who started at Carle in 2015, stresses the importance of exercise with all of his patients.

“I talk about exercise consistently to every patient because not only can it treat comorbidities, but it can also prevent future illness and disease,” Kim said. “I believe exercise along with diet is the foundation of health, and so I make it a priority to talk about exercise with each patient.”

He treats exercise like a vital sign, having his certified medical assistant ask all patients if they exercise and how much.

“Asking about exercise as a vital sign has made it extremely easy to bring up the topic of exercise to each patient,” he said.

Kim offers his patients advice about how to get started if they’re new to exercise and offers ways to increase physical activity if they aren’t active enough. He caters each plan to each patient’s individual interests and lifestyle and tries to help them take one small step at a time.

“If I have a patient that is completely sedentary, I will find out what his or her interests are and try to tailor some kind of physical activity from that,” Kim said. “I try to shoot for my patients to start off with a number they know they can do, whether it’s 5 minutes or 20 minutes a day.”

He also has patients fill out exercise logs to help hold them accountable and initially follows up with them every 2 weeks or once a month until exercise becomes more routine.

Through it all, he’s learned that being patient and nonjudgmental is key.

“New habits take time to build,” he said. “So I make sure patients know that I am not here to ridicule them, but to encourage and support them as they try to build the new habit of exercising. I have found that when patients know that their provider genuinely cares about their health, it gets to the point where it motivates the patients to push themselves a little more, and I believe this is why I have many success stories of patients going from a sedentary lifestyle to a more active lifestyle.”

Key Takeaways

  • Discuss exercise along with vital signs for every patient.
  • Be patient about results, and don’t ridicule.
  • Set attainable goals with small steps.
  • Follow up frequently until exercise becomes a habit.
  • Have patients use exercise logs and bring them to each appointment
Healthy Squash Recipes

Healthy Squash Recipes

It’s also Spinach and Squash Month, and we’re helping you make the most of the in-season veggie with healthy squash recipes.

First up, whip up Chicken Pesto Spaghetti Squash for a delicious meal without the guilt.

Chicken Pesto Spaghetti Squash
Image and Recipe via The Girl on Bloor


Whip up a classic with this easy Roasted Butternut Squash Soup recipe.

Paleo Roasted Butternut Squash Soup


Delicata Squash Bake is perfect to impress your guests for a beautiful holiday meal.

Delicata Squash Bake
Image and Recipe via The Movement Menu


Winter lunch is covered with Harvest Blackberry and Butternut Squash Kale Salad.

VIDEO: Harvest Blackberry and Butternut Squash Massaged Kale Salad


Make light and delicious Turkey Mushroom Apple-Stuffed Acorn Squash for a chilly night.

Turkey Mushroom Apple-Stuffed Acorn Squash
Image and Recipe via The Clean Eating Couple


Squash will transform your brunch in this Butternut Squash Mushroom Bacon Frittata.

Butternut Squash Mushroom Bacon Frittata


Skip the tortilla chips with this easy and tasty Spaghetti Squash Taco Bake.

Spaghetti Squash Taco Bake