Uh oh! I'm at high risk according to my health insurance!

(John Spanos) #1

Due to the “Affordable Care Act” causing the health insurance premiums to skyrocket at the small software development shop I work for, we have had to move to a high deductible plan. The premiums are still higher than before the ACA took effect, but there is an option for a reduced premium (still over double from before) for taking part in their wellness program. I have to complete a health risk assessment and have a biometric screening where they will take my measurements, blood pressure, cholesterol, and fasting glucose.

Of course the wellness plan is endorsing the diet that the American Heart Association pushes, your typical low-fat non-sense. Which is why I get this!

Warning signs include eating a high-fat diet, skipping breakfast, eating salty foods, not eating fruit, not eating whole grains. Yep, I have all those warning signs! That pretty much exactly describes the ketogenic lifestyle that I live!

I can’t wait to meet with the counselor tomorrow and have them try to explain why I need to eat a low-fat diet. I’ll be about 14 hours into a fast and followed the plan outlined by Dave Feldman on episode 38 of the 2KetoDudes show. He said that he was able to hack his cholesterol by eating keto, but at 4000-5000 calories for 4 days prior to the test, then fasting for the 14 hours right before. We shall see if I have the same results. Unfortunately, I do not have a baseline to compare to, but I’m excited to see what it says. I’m sure my glucose will be low, as it’s under 70 now and I just ate about 30 minutes ago.

At least my premiums are not directly tied to their poorly researched choice of diet.


Free testing! You lucky duck.

Ten to one they flat out don’t believe you when you tell them you’re keto. Hey, let 'em think whatever they want, you’re getting free stuff and reducing costs. Practice your smug look.


Ya, my insurance questionnaire answers came back with that assessment too, but then when my blood work came out good that was all that mattered.

(John) #4

Not sure why the post got flagged, saying something not great about ACA?

(John Spanos) #5

It doesn’t tell me why, but I assume so. I was only stating facts! After the ACA, premiums went up and coverage went down at my work. :unamused:

(Guardian of the bacon) #6

I don’t understand the flagging either?

(John) #7

Mine went up 5 fold, I don’t qualify for any discounts or any of that, it is pretty brutal. I will say that when I had to use it it was great, but I could have paid it out of pocket plus gotten a jet ski with the old system. Hopefully we’ll get something good one day.


If you’re doing an assessment for insurance purposes, your answers could end up affecting what they charge you. It’s best to lie and say you’re eating the way they think you should be.

(John Spanos) #9

I’m sorry, but I cannot hide the truth. I will disprove the establishment by living it out. Somewhere, someday, actuaries and accountants will fix the premiums, but only if they have honest data and a competitive marketplace.


Nah, the blood work should trump the questionnaire. Plus, as @John_Spanos says, the only way things will change is if we’re honest about what we’re doing and the results we’re getting.


Maybe someone associates the ACA with politics–? I have no idea.


Just tell them you eat all things considered healthy and that don’t make you fart.

(Richard Morris) #13

It was flagged because the original post referred to Obamacare, the original poster changed it to ACA and everything is all good.

I just want to explain our policy on politics and especially American politics; Ever since the lead up to the US election we actively quashed political tribalism (of all stripes) because half the audience is bored of the subject because either they are not Americans or not engaged in the process, a quarter of the audience take it as a personal attack, and the remaining quarter want to cheer.

I recognize this is an exception to our general policy of not censoring speech.

Aside from that … I did @DaveKeto’s hack and it worked for me too. I owe him a blog post on the subject.

(John Spanos) #14

Thanks for clearing up the reasoning. I figured the O word was the reason for the flag!

(Dave) #15

That’s great, John, I’m excited to hear how it goes.

Here’s my protocol in detail --> http://cholesterolcode.com/extreme-cholesterol-drop-experiment/

As always, I encourage everyone to track everything they ate closely and to please share, whatever the outcome!

(Dave) #16

Thanks, Richard! And of course I’ll be bunking with you guys in just a few weeks where I’ll be dropping the data bomb in my presentation to Low Carb Breckenridge. (It’s gonna be Big)

(Chris Bair) #17

My insurance sent me a letter in the mail telling me I should take STATINS because of my “high cholesterol”. I took it to my doctor and demanded a NMR and every other blood test I could think of (at the expense of the insurance). He couldn’t figure out why they would have thought I needed statins but said the tests say I’m in awesome health.

On a side note: if you’re a dude, get your testosterone level checked. And when you get the results compare them to the “broken down by age” levels on http://www.artofmanliness.com/2013/01/16/normal-testosterone-levels/

(John Spanos) #18

That was fun!

Here are my results:
BP - 123 / 86 (normal for me, high BP runs in the family - still on one medication for it)
Total Cholesterol - 180
HDL Cholesterol - 59
Triglycerides - 61
LDL Cholesterol - 109
Non-HDL Cholesterol - 121
Total Chol / HDL Ratio - 3.1

The nurse that took my measurements was astounded when I told her that I had lost 50 lbs in the last year and asked about my diet. She had not heard about the ketogenic diet, but said she will be googling it when she gets off work today!

Thanks @DaveKeto for the protocol and thanks to @carl and @richard for making the podcast and creating this awesome forum to share info!

(Richard Morris) #19

Trigs/HDL = 1.03 … IDEAL

Well done. As for your LDL numbers, no way they will want you on statins. Outstanding result.

(Murray Stromberg) #20

Another LDL point should be made: LDL is calculated, not measured. The traditional Friedewald formula may produce a “too high” LDL in persons with a low triglyceride level (under 100). The Iranian formula is intended to correct LDL calculations for low triglyceride measurements. Here is a link with explanation: http://healthcorrelator.blogspot.com/2013/12/the-friedewald-and-iranian-equations.html

Just for fun, look at these numbers: my lab says my LDL is 124 with total cholesterol of 209, TG = 38 & HDL =77. Using the Iranian formula my calculated LD is 88. I prefer this number (even though it is likely useless information compared to TG/HDL).

Friedewald formula: LDL = TC – HDL – TG / 5
Iranian formula: LDL = TC / 1.19 + TG / 1.9 – HDL / 1.1 – 38

When my internist complained about my “elevated” LDL a month ago, I mentioned the Iranian formula calculation. He had never heard of the alternative calcualtion.