In the average budget of annual expenditures in the US, Business Insider revealed that food accounts for 12.5 percent or $7,023. The largest spending, which is at $3,008 falls on the dining out category, followed by $726 on miscellaneous food which includes premade meals, snacks, condiments, and vitamin supplements. While the numbers do not indicate if Americans eat out more than they cook at home, it gives a clear picture of how they can make changes and improve their spending on food. Compared to the budget for housing and transportation, food is where Americans can make immediate changes.
On the bright side, a Pew Research Center survey showed 54 percent of Americans agreeing that people pay more attention to eating healthy foods. This is corroborated by the many diet trends emerging today. Veganism and vegetarianism in particular are becoming increasingly popular not just because of their impact on health, but for their environmental-friendly approach.
The health benefits of these diets include weight loss, improved kidney function, and lower sugar levels, among others. Veganism may also be beneficial to children because it lowers the risk of diabetes, aside from providing necessary nutrients. Dr. Neal Barnard explained that weight problems are common in children, and that the problem will only get worse as they reach adulthood. Current findings indicate that one in three kids will develop diabetes at some point in their life.
Now is a great idea to change up your family diet in preparation for a healthier lifestyle, especially with the increasing health care costs in the US. This is due to a number of aspects, including advancements in medical technology, as well as higher salaries for those in the medical field. Also, Americans are finding more difficulty in securing a health plan today. Those with supposedly sponsored insurances now have to deal with higher deductibles as well as out-of-pocket expenses. CNBC detailed the high prices for family health plans, stating that the average deductible for in 2016 was $7,983. Meanwhile, premiums for family plans averaged at $833 a month. Unless the current administration steps in and repeals the current health care act, costs will continue to rise in the coming years.
In the midst of this health care crisis, health insurance companies are issuing policies that can lessen premium fees. For example, some companies can charge 50 percent more on health plans for people who smoke. Others come up with incentives that involve making health-related choices. The principle behind these rules is that the more people take part in healthy activities, the lower the premiums cost. This is also so that they can avoid high medical costs in the future. It’s the reason why those who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet can save a lot of money on health insurance fees as well as inpatient care costs. Health IQ specified that vegans have a 15 percent lower risk of mortality, 22 percent lower risk of colorectal cancer, and 34 percent lower risk of female-specific cancer. If you don’t want to worry about headache-inducing health care costs, then eating healthy is a good way to save you from frequent trips to the hospital.
As 2018 looms, it would be beneficial to let you and the rest of the family focus on health-related aspects for your New Year’s resolutions. If you plan on transitioning to a vegan or vegetarian diet, make sure to ask the advice of a nutritionist, especially if there are children involved. Everybody is different, and some may not be able to thrive on a purely plant-based diet. It matters less how many adjustments the family needs to make, as long as it sets you on a path to healthier years.