Dear HCCUA Members:
Love is the answer! Research suggests that people who experience being loved are more likely to have stronger immune systems, lower blood pressure, have a greater resistance to the common cold, recover faster after illness and injury, and decreased anxiety and depression.
When we find an extraordinary connection with another person, positivity begins to flow and our nervous system is infested with good hormones. Dopamine, one of the hormones generated when individuals are in love, evokes emotions of pleasure, optimism, energy and a sense of well-being. Not to mention, physical touch such as hugging, hand holding and intercourse release oxytocin, which lowers stress hormones immensely.
In most cases, having someone to share life with may lower people’s desire to smoke, eat unhealthy meals and may cause one to exercise regularly to please their partner. Having a partner can provide different levels of emotional and functional social support, which has been shown to be related to mortality.
Having support from a partner, parents, siblings and friends may help individuals remain more intellectually engaged with others, which helps avoid dementia. Furthermore, it is likely to identify cancer in its early stages when you have someone constantly with you and able to see changes in your health.
Conversely, being in love can also increase obesity rate. People eat more when they are together. Some believe once you have legally obligated someone to stick with you through sickness and health, there is no compelling reason to eat right and exercise. In reality people should be motivating each other to stay active by making good nutritional habits and exercise part of your daily lives.
Life is truly about balance! This means finding the “me time” you desire and maintaining healthy relationships with those who matter most in your life. Practice self-love so you can love others around you whole heartedly. The ultimate goal in a healthy lifestyle is to help people become more aware that eating right and being active is important for their health no matter what their status is.
As part of your February e-newsletter you will find an article on one of our many HCCUA benefits Pet Care Savings which gives you access to 25% off on all Vet services received in-network through Pet Assure. For further assistance with this benefit you may visit us at www.hccua.org or call us at Member Services 866-227-5400.
You will also find a comforting dish from the South to warm your belly. Low Country Boil is a recipe from The Food Network. We would love some feedback on any of the featured recipes that you have tried or enjoyed making with your family. Which is your favorite?
Kristine Eckardt, Director of Member Communications