Wave your wand and make it disappear
Stress is more than a feeling; it’s a reaction. And if managing stress was as easy as waving a wand, wouldn’t we all be stress free? Eliminating stress from your life isn’t magic, it takes time, but once you can identify your reactions, then you can control and better manage your stress.
- Identify Your Reactions - keep a journal for a week or two to help you track your reactions. Reactions may be: pain, anger, overeating, etc.
Manage Your Stress - these are just a few techniques you can try:
- scale back on your obligations
- set realistic goals for what you can accomplish in a day
- get more sleep each night
Remember stress won’t just magically disappear. Blue KC can help you or a family member find care. New Directions Behavioral Health (an independent company that manages Blue KC’s behavioral health benefits) is available to provide assistance for members suffering from stress, anxiety, depression, alcohol or substance abuse or any other behavioral health condition.
For more information or a referral to a New Directions Behavioral Health specialist, call the phone number listed on your Blue KC member ID card.
Why antibiotics don't work on cold & flu bugs.
For many who develop a cough, stuffy nose, or sore throat, visiting the doctor seems like the right answer. However, in some cases, it’s not. Only if symptoms linger more than three weeks or accompany existing health problems, should you see your doctor.
Why wait? Wouldn’t antibiotics speed up your recovery? The answer is NO. A chest cold, or as doctors refer to it, acute bronchitis is caused by a virus. Antibiotics are not effective at treating viral infections.
The CDC says taking an antibiotic when it isn’t needed causes bacteria to become drug resistant. Resistant bacteria is stronger and harder to kill. It can even make you sicker. So, treat your cold/flu symptoms with cough medicine and/or a pain reliever and get plenty of rest. To learn more visit cdc.gov/getsmart.
Tips to Eating Healthy This Holiday Season
Eating unhealthy over the holidays can leave a person feeling remorseful. The trick is not to deny yourself your holiday favorites, but rather make healthier substitutions.
- Choose unsalted nuts or fiber-rich crackers
- Buy low-fat or fat-free eggnog
- Use fat-free evaporated milk when making potatoes
- Add dried cranberries and raisins to your stuffing instead of meat
- Make your gravy with low-sodium broth and skim milk
- Avoid pre-packaged pies - crusts are high in trans and saturated fats
Our site, BeWellKC.BlueKC.com was created to provide current information on Blue KC’s Health Promotions’ programs and initiatives as well as provide tips on health and wellness. The Health Promotions microsite features the Blue KC Healthy Family SurveyTM that collects information to help Blue KC create meaningful programs for the community. Check out the microsite now!
Defy the odds and prevent the pounds
What’s your strategy this holiday season for preventing weight gain? It’s common for some individuals to gain 5-10 pounds of body fat each holiday season, but it’s not inevitable. You can enjoy the festivities and all the special foods by following these nutrition and diet strategies.
- Eat 4-6 smaller meals rather than save up for one big meal.
- When it comes to dessert, take a bite or two and leave the rest.
- Stay clear of the appetizer table.
- Substitute ingredients for a healthy modification.
- Include 'nutritionally dense' foods on your plate. These are foods that give you the most nutrients for the fewest calories, such as pumpkin and cranberry.
- Bring a healthy side dish to the party such as a veggie tray or fruit platter.
- Be aware of liquid calories from alcohol and fruit juices.
- Plan a workout before a holiday party or big meal.
- Eat slowly. Don’t rush through your meal.
- Keep a food journal.
To learn more about these strategies click here.