Obesity. Health Insurance Can Help You Make A Change.

Cutting board with tape measure
Go lose weight. Eat less. It’s not that simple for a person with obesity. Its complicated, and health insurance can help.

When we struggle with weight management, too often there is a fear of being blamed or judged or failing. Not addressing weight issues and seeking help beyond listening to people who say ‘eat less and move more’ is detrimental to good health.  That’s why health insurance helps.

What is obesity?

We live in an information society that’s full of misinformation – sometimes when talking about obesity. It’s more than someone’s weight or size. According to Obesity Canada, obesity is a chronic disease characterized by the presence of abnormal or excess body fat that impairs your health and social well-being.

Obesity lasts for a long time and requires ongoing management. It’s not something that can be easily fixed overnight. It’s like having a condition that needs regular attention and care, just like other chronic diseases such as diabetes or high blood pressure.

Often people don’t understand the causes of obesity. It is a complex condition that involves genetic as well as psychosocial and environmental factors. A person’s own biology will continuously fight weight loss because our bodies have an innate purpose to protect us from weight loss.

Why is it important to address obesity?

Obesity affects a large portion of Canadians – one in four adults – and those numbers are expected to climb. Concerningly, it can worsen other chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure.  It can also increase your risk of

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Certain cancers
  • Fatty liver disease
  • Gallbladder diseases
  • Heart problems
  • Joint pain
  • Kidney disease
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Sleep apnea
  • Stroke

Day to day, people with obesity often have trouble with their energy levels and may have mobility issues – making everything from finding a comfortable chair to using public restrooms difficult.


How does health insurance help with obesity?

There are many factors that likely contribute to weight issues: our diets, our genetics, our activity level, medications, our sleep, and stress. People experiencing obesity can get support to manage the condition, just like people experiencing other chronic diseases. In fact, one in three people living with obesity require medical support.

Health insurance covers some of the out-of-pocket costs for healthcare and provides options that each person can use to personally customize their approach for a healthy outcome

While treatment from a general practitioner will usually not cost anything, expenses for other therapy to help you cope with life’s hurdles can really add up. Visits for counselling provided by a psychologist can help you think about your problems differently and give you ways to manage — and the fees charged can be covered under your health insurance, up to a plan maximum covered per year. Therapy can be in person or virtual to be eligible.

Health insurance delivers many “built in” tools so you learn new ways to deal with the expected and unexpected in life including mindfulness tools, sleep, stress management and motivational programs to help focus on your weight management to achieve your health goals, plus access to recent articles on finding care, managing your health, and preventing illness. There are also some plans with motivational programs to help you focus and achieve your health goals.

You may struggle with fads and gimmicks and be looking for real direction or guidance or appropriate means of managing your obesity. Dietician health coaching is covered by health insurance and can identify healthier food choices and provide support to reduce or maintain a healthy weight.

When it comes to improving your overall well-being in mind, body, and spirit, you may consider the advantages of physical therapies. Naturopathic doctors, Swedish and shiatsu massage performed by registered therapists and eastern-based acupuncture are just some of the options individuals choose. These services are not covered by your government health plan, and you will be charged a fee, which may be partly covered by your health insurance.

Health insurance can also cover prescription medication which may be a part of the solution you need.  There are a number of weight-loss drugs approved by Health Canada that prescribed.

Consider Manulife Guaranteed Issue Enhanced Plan as your health insurance option

Remember, in Canada, we’re fortunate to have government healthcare that covers doctors’ visits, in‐hospital procedures and so on. But there’s a lot that’s not covered — like eyeglasses, dental care and more. Those expenses can take up a big chunk of your family budget, especially when they’re unexpected.

With Manulife’s Guaranteed Issue Enhanced Plan, if you are a resident of Canada over the age of 18 and covered by a government healthcare plan, your acceptance is guaranteed at time of application. The plan provides:

  • A prescription drug benefit limit
  • an easy application if you prefer not to answer medical questions
  • coverage for anti-obesity drugs, as well as vaccines, birth control, medical marijuana (for certain conditions, pre-approval is required) smoking cessation, erectile dysfunction drugs, flash glucose sensors and more
  • dental care coverage to reimburse you on exams, cleanings, fillings, scaling, polishing, root planing, diagnostic and other basic dental service, and extensive services including oral surgery, endodontics, periodontics, and denture services
  • coverage for registered specialists and therapists including acupuncturists, athletic therapists, chiropractors, osteopaths, naturopaths, chiropodists, podiatrists, massage therapists, physiotherapists, and dietitians
  • medical equipment including casts, canes, and crutches, walkers, and knee-walkers as well as oxygen and blood pressure monitors
  • orthotics and hearing aids
  • coverage towards prescription eyewear, including lenses and frames, contact lenses, and laser eye surgery (3 month waiting period)
  • in Canada Emergency Medical Travel coverage and coverage outside of Canada (ends at age 70)
  • virtual health care with 24/7 access to healthcare practitioners online, through the app for easy access to lab results, prescriptions, refills, and referrals

What’s your next step?

As more people define their weight as inappropriate, its important to be able to have a source to trust to receive proper guidance and support. As treatments are becoming available, your health insurance will evolve year after year to help you now and in the future with your wellness – and the overall healthcare needs for yourself and your family.

Call us at SBIS… speaking with us is an effective way to discover a health insurance plan that’s right for you, like Manulife’s Guaranteed Issue Enhanced Plan or over 50 other choices, many of which can help you in your battle with obesity. Give us a call today or go online to apply for coverage for you and your loved ones.


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