When we think of diabetes, what comes to mind is diet, insulin injections, obesity, and even heart disease. But diabetes doesn’t just affect a person’s health; it can be incredibly expensive.
And for some of the 30 million people in the United States who are diabetic, the high costs that come with the disease can be detrimental.
According to the American Diabetes Association, the average medical expenditure for a person with diabetes is $13,700 per year, of which about $7,900 is attributed to the disease.
This means that medical costs for people with diabetes are nearly two times as much than for people without.
“Over the course of five years, if you have diabetes, your costs are increased by 41 percent,” Alexa Von Tobel, a nationally known finance expert, tells Newsmax Health. “This could have a real impact on your wallet.”
Not everyone can afford those kind of medical expenses. Von Tobel, teamed up with Roche Diabetes Care, to survey people with diabetes and found that 75 percent say they are cutting costs by straying from their dietary plans. In addition, 58 percent of those surveyed cut costs by straying from their health management plan.
People are choosing unhealthy food over healthy food and forgoing treatments and medicines that help manage their diabetes, because it costs less to do so.
“Obviously that’s not great,” Von Tobel explains. “If you’re really battling with an issue, we want to make sure that you engage in the best plan for your health.”
So how can one stay healthy and financially stable? Von Tobel outlines a few tips and tricks that will help bring the cost of diabetes down.
Become your own personal accountant. Von Tobel advises that people with diabetes “roll up your sleeves and get involved with your wallet.” Taking a good, hard look at your finances is a great way to start — it will help you see where you can cut costs safely, and put you on the right track for the future. “Not having a financial plan is a plan, it’s just a really bad plan,” she jokes, “a potentially dangerous one at that.”
Check out your options. Diabetes treatments are often expensive, but there may be some discounts you can find that will help you save on your health management. One such example is the Accu-Chek Guide Simple Pay Program. “It’s really simple, it’s just a card, that allows you to get real transparency when it comes to buying things like your test strips,” Von Tobel explains. “It really empowers you — you understand exactly what you’re paying all the time for your test strips, which brings predictability to that process.”
Grocery store geometry. Food can be pricey, and healthy options are often even pricier. Von Tobel combats this with a technique she calls perimeter shopping. “When you go to the grocery store,” she says, “grab the coupons at the front, but then literally shop around the perimeter at the grocery store. That’s where your less expensive, but most importantly, high quality health foods are.” In addition to shopping the perimeter, don’t forget to look up and down, because “everything that’s at eye level is the most expensive; the generic brands are usually above and below.”
© 2023 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.