Nelson BC Holistic Nutrition Consultant

Health Care Spending

Each year, Canadians spend on average between $1000-$3000 on basic health care out of pocket for health insurance premiums, dental visits, and pharmaceutical drugs.  Add to that any private practitioner partially covered by insurance, or ones not covered at all.  Special dietary items, nutritional supplements, or products recommended by a naturopathic doctor add up each month.  

Source: Stats Canada

Have you calculated your out of pocket health care expenses?

Consider how much you spend on your groceries, which items you prioritize because of their health benefits, such as specialty diets ingredients.  Also consider items like gym memberships, air and water filter units, and cosmetics for skin, hair, and nails.  Add up all these expenses and ask your self these questions:

Am I healthier now? 

Will I be healthier as a result? 

Invest in your health

For each dollar you spend on your health, consider the investment into your future life.  Preventative health is cost effective, proactive, and smart.  There is wisdom to the old addage that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”.  Like a good financial plan, and health investment plan can help you to achieve your wellness goals.

With an overwhelming selection of health products, it helps to know what will pay dividends. It is always wise to consult about which products are right for you, and to get as much information as you can to make knowledgeable and informed choices.  

In general, you get what you pay for in nutritional supplements, so cheap ingredients do not generally carry the same quality as higher priced products.  That said, marketing and brand name can also be a major part of the product price.

 

Here are 3 qualities to look for in nutritional supplements:

Products that have an immediate noticeable health benefit will make you feel better.

Taking a nutritional supplement because we “should”, because we read it is good for us, or because it is supposed to work for a condition we have are all reasons to try something new.  Do we continue to take products that do not make us feel good?  

Products that have cumulative health benefits will be noticed over time.

Certain products to not make us feel better right away, but take a period of weeks or months to notice a difference.  Perfect example is fish oil, which can take up to 3 months to have the health effects that come from its anti-inflammatory properties.  Other products like B12 may act on our body more immediately.   One way to tell if this sort of supplement is working is to take a break from it.  Quite often we can only tell if the product is working by stopping, as symptoms resume, or energy levels drop.  

Products that health chronic degenerative health issues.

Body organs and tissues take time to heal.  It is said that when unhealthy practices are removed, healing will resume.  Sometimes we need supplements to balance an unhealthy lifestyle.  Too much stress, over-consumption of refined foods, and lack of sleep are habits that signal greater nutritional need.  One common class of herbs are called adaptogens, are used to balance stress hormone cortisol in times of chronic stress.  these sorts of supplements are meant to be taken in the short term, as we deal with and change unhealthy circumstances in our lives.  

No matter which type of supplement we take, rarely should we take them all the time, and our supplement programs needs to be re-evaluated periodically to ensure we are maximizing our value and purchasing what will make the most difference in terms of our health.