Stay Strong & Live Long

Admittedly, not all of us are as fit as the Olympic athletes that we’ve been amazed by this past week. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how the human body can even achieve the impossible feats we have seen. Unfortunately things only get harder as we age. As you age, you gradually lose muscle mass your muscles begin to weaken. However, it’s never too late to start strengthening your body and reaping the benefits.You can slow this natural part of aging by keeping your muscles strong.

According to BCBSLA, studies show that strength training may help you stay active longer. It can prevent bone loss, or osteoporosis. That may protect you from a fall or a serious injury if you do fall. What’s more, stronger muscles may help people with a chronic condition, such as heart disease or arthritis, live better.

Here are a few tips from BCBSLA that can help you get started:

  • Choose one or two exercises for each of the 6 major muscle groups. Your routine should focus on your chest, shoulders, arms, back, abdomen, and legs.
  • Try using your own body weight. Heavy weights aren’t needed for strength training. Resistance exercises, such as pushups or lunges, work, too. But you may want to add weights later for more of a challenge.
  • Schedule some days off. Your muscles need time to recover. So it’s best to fit in a day or two of rest between each strength-training session.
  • Aim for 8 to 10 repetitions, or reps, for each exercise you do. For example, to strengthen your chest, you can do one set of 8 to 10 pushups. You may want to add more sets as you grow stronger.
  • Focus on your form. When lifting weights, in particular, keep your movements slow and steady. And remember to breathe.
  • Mix in some aerobic activity. The more physically active you are the better. Along with 2 sessions of strength training a week, experts also recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity like brisk walking.
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Expecting Moms

Healthy Blue Beginnings Can Help You

If you are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, or have a baby who is younger than 1 year old, the Blue Cross Healthy Blue Beginnings program may be for you. Through the program you can get confidential help from nurses to help keep you and your baby healthy. Best of all, it doesn’t cost you extra if you have maternity coverage or dependent coverage for your baby.

Call Blue Cross nurses and speak to someone who is dedicated to Healthy Blue Beginnings

  • Call 1-800-317-2299
  • To speak with a nurse, press 1

Continue reading “Expecting Moms”

An Aspirin a day?

According to Blue Cross, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says that studies show aspirin lowers the risk of heart attacks and other health problems in some patients. But taking aspirin doesn’t fix everything, and it isn’t for everyone.

What to ask your doctor about taking Aspirin:
  1. Is taking aspirin a good idea for me?
  2. What are the risks?
  3. How much should I take?
  4. Will it cause problems with the other drugs and vitamins I take?

 

How to stop getting paper EOBs

Blue Cross Explanation of Benefits (EOB) forms can be accessed online instead of through the mail. Besides clearing the clutter, going paperless is good for the environment and lowers your plan’s administrative costs.

Steps to stopping paper EOBs:

  1. Log in to your online account at bcbsla.com
  2. Under Account Management, click My Preferences
  3. Under My Services, click Paperless

After you’ve changed your settings, Blue Cross will stop mailing paper copies of your EOBs. Instead they will post each one to your account and send you an email when one is ready for you to view. You can print out an EOB anytime.

Save on Gym Memberships

Blue Cross members can save on gym memberships through Healthways Fitness Your Way, part of the Blue365 discount program. Healthways lets you choose from a list of many fitness gyms, in town or across the country, for just $25 a month.

On budget

  • Only $25 per month and a low $25 sign-up fee, with a three-month commitment
  • Get up to 30% off certain other health and well-being services
  • Save on some products that are part of the program

Participating Gyms

  • Anytime Fitness
  • Curves
  • Snap Fitness
  • Use the zip code finder to find gyms near you

Easy to reach your goals

  • Find fitness classes that fit you and your needs
  • Easy online tools to track your goals
  • Stay inspired with social networking, rewards and the Daily Challenge

Find out more about the Healthways gym discount by logging in to your account at bcbsla.com. Click My Health, then Discounts.

Blue Cross offers FREE identity theft protection

Effective January 1, most Blue Cross plans offer FREE identity protection services to eligible members.

Are you eligible for identity protection services?

Active Blue Cross or HMO Louisiana group and individual members are eligible for free identity protection services. Members will not need to pay anything extra to sign up. Members are eligible as soon as their Blue Cross plans are effective, and are covered as long as they remain an active member.

You are not eligible for these services if you are on Medicare, Medicaid or Federal Employee Program.

Identity Repair Services

Identity repair is automatically available as needed. If you become a victim of identity theft, an AllClear investigator will act as your guide and advocate from start to finish until the issue is resolved.

Ongoing Identity Theft & Credit Monitoring Services

You must enroll in ongoing monitoring services; you will not be automatically enrolled. Enrollees will get:

  • Identity theft monitoring fraud protection services, in which data such as credit card numbers and Social Security numbers are scanned against data sources from security researchers that contain stolen and compromised data, to look for any indication that your data has been used inappropriately.
  • Credit monitoring services, which alert you if banks and creditors use your identity to open new credit accounts.

Sign up online at http://www.enroll.allclearid.com or call 1-855-229-0079 and enter the code “BCBSLA16.”

How to avoid the flu

You can avoid the flu this season by taking 1 simple step: Get a flu shot.

Some people think that getting a flu shot is too much trouble, costs too much or will make them sick or more likely to catch the flu or even colds.

The flu is caused by 1 of several strains of flu viruses (type A or B) that infect the nose, throat, and lungs. The flu makes life miserable for a week or 2 for many people — and deadly for some. Flu season can begin as early as October and peak anywhere from late December to early April, according to the CDC.

Here are the facts

Your best defense against the flu is to get the flu shot. Depending on your age, you can do that in 1 of 2 ways:

Continue reading “How to avoid the flu”