We take it as common sense when we have to pay a higher car insurance if we have a teenage son or daughter driving our car. We take it for granted that people that earn more money than us pay a higher tax rate. We understand that most of us live in a capitalistic society and that as such, companies around us as well as our governments accumulate profits using our money via taxes, fees, services etc. Most of us are even fine with it. But let me ask you this:
Should vegans be entitled to financial benefits when it comes to health care, HMO rates, medical and life insurance plans? Shouldn’t a person, who is actively choosing a healthier lifestyle, one that diminishes chances of different chronic diseases and use of medications pay less? And shouldn’t governmental and health care institutions encourage those people by offering them lower rates?
Ok. I can already hear the wave of discontent coming my way: No. Not all vegans are healthy. Some vegans eat processed junk food on a regular basis and are as prone to disease as anyone else. But what about those who are living by the principles shown by the likes of Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. Esselstyn and Dr. McDougall? What about those who have mitigated chances of becoming diabetic, having high blood pressure or suffering from heart disease by eating a well balanced, low-fat vegan diet? Should they pay the same costs as those who eat at McDonalds on a regular basis?
I am well aware that no one in this world is 100% disease proof, but with that said, as our world revolves around the “chance game” – chances are that those who follow the principles mentioned above will not need the same amount of medical care; not in terms of visiting doctors, not in terms of needing medications, and not in terms of medical interventions such as surgeries.
Furthermore, I believe that if we want to encourage each other to make the right choices food wise – and consequently health wise, we should not only demand that organic vegetables will be less expensive than a burger, or that freshly squeezed juice will cost less than a can of coke, but that also medical insurance, health insurance and HMO rates will be less expensive for those who have proven to be on a well balanced low-fat vegan diet with the blood test results to back it up.
How do we make this change happen? Next time you call to inquire about health or life insurance with a large scale company, ask them if they will be willing to provide you with a special rate for the reasons mentioned above. Write to your parliament representative with links to the research done by doctors world-wide such as the China Study and ask them to look into the data and its financial implications. Make an appointment with your HMO manager and ask that they will consider lowering your rate or at least look at the numbers to understand why your rates should be lower. If enough of us will do it – the message will eventually seep through.
One day we might be able to say ‘we are compassionate, we are healthy, we live better – and we pay less…’