Monthly Archives: October 2008

Witchy Medicine Ways To Confuse Your Pocketbook

Toothpick voodooOur health insurance system has broken down, for those of you that don’t know yet. Odds are, you do know since you see a large amount of money going to these insurers who later deny claims for spurious reasons. If that weren’t bad enough, the co-pays on doctors visits on some plans make it somewhat ridiculous to even be insured. You’d have much better luck going to a doctor of your choice, outside a plan, and claiming to be uninsured and paying out of pocket. Why is that? It’s because no one tells you what your visit will cost you – until you’ve actually had the service done and the insurer has been billed. Until then, you could be liable for zero, a co-pay, or for the entire procedure (depending on what lame excuse they can think up to deny your claim). But, if you are uninsured, the first thing out of their mouths is the actual cost of the procedure!

Would You Shop This Way For Any Other Product?

Imagine ordering something off the Internet, and it says not to worry that the cost is free. Just load up your ecart and don’t worry about the cost. Someone else is picking up the tab and the bill is paid! All you got to do is pay a minimal $20 shipping fee. So, you order everything and more, without regard to cost, and then when it arrives, your credit card is charged for an outrageous amount because that someone else skipped town or denied ever suggesting they would pay up. Better yet, maybe the fine print read that you had to place your order between 2:00 and 2:01 am on leap year day to get that deal, and sorry, you just didn’t follow the rule! Would you be mad at the person who skipped out or at the e-store? Probably both, but more so at the e-store because they weren’t upfront about the actual cost of the goods sold. Yet, somehow, it’s okay for medical doctors, and anyone in the health field, to simply avoid answering questions about the cost of a procedure, and pass off that responsibility to the insurance company. You don’t find out until after it’s been billed to the insurer how much it costs or whether you bought more than you would have, if you had known what was happening.

My Trip To MinuteClinic

So, sometimes I go to the MinuteClinic for small things rather than to a doctor’s office. They have charges right up front and let you know what they will do. Unlike a doctor’s office, if you go in and they can’t treat you, MinuteClinic won’t charge you for the visit. That seems fair, but no one thinks it’s fair if you go to doctor after doctor who fails to cure you and you refuse to pay them, even if all they do is give you a looksy. It’s expected that you remain sick and in the care of these people, continuing to pay for treatment, that doesn’t actually affect your health. But, that’s another issue with our health care system, I don’t have time to discuss right now.

At any rate, I went to MinuteClinic because I accidentally plunged the tip of a knife into the web of my left hand when I was cooking. It got infected, after three days, and the whole hand swelled up and bruised like I was turning into one of those zombies from that truly-awful movie, Legend. I thought at about that time that I should see a doctor as my last tetanus shot was about 10 years ago, exactly. Lucky for me, MinuteClinic administers tetanus shots. I go there and sign in and the attending nurse refuses to give me a tetanus shot. She said it was infected and so might need antibiotics and that I had to go to a doctor’s office, urgent care, actually.

What I Did

I headed over to Urgent Care and was sitting in their waiting room when the whole thing hit me! Our health care system is a scam. There was another person there who also had been at the same MinuteClinic with me prior and she had also been referred to urgent care too! I, for one, can’t go with conventional medicines because I’m hypersensitive to all chemicals and medications. I do sometimes use medical systems when I need a cyst removed, and I’m sure I’d use it if I broke an arm. But, to get a disease or infection treatment – NO WAY! The treatment just might kill me! I know exactly how to heal my own body. So, I got up and walked out.

Trip To The Health Food Store

I went over the health food store, instead, and bought myself some colloidal silver and then went to see my energy healer, who also happens to be a retired nurse. She told me I could take one more day before I had to try the antibiotic treatment, and that we would pray over it and she would send it healing. So, I loaded up on Echinacea, Goldenseal, and colloidal silver, two of the three being natural antibiotics. The next day, I woke up to a hand that was no longer inflamed and healing fast.

What I Learned

I have no health care choice. That’s right, I wanted a tetanus shot and was refused UNLESS I went somewhere to load up on medications I know I can’t take. What choice is that? The cut healed all by itself and later I found out that if you have at least three tetanus shots in your life, the odds of getting tetanus are practically nil. That’s me. But, I doubt they would have told me that once I landed in urgent care. They would have been only too happy to give me one anyways. I also learned antibiotics might have worked, or might not have, as they do work on some things. But, colloidal silver is an antibiotic, an antifungal, and an antibacterial. Whatever got into my cut was IMMEDIATELY wiped out. It works internally and on top of the wound too.

The cost for a tetanus shot at MinuteClinic was $60. The cost of an appointment with Urgent Care runs $75 to $85. The cost of antibiotics, out-of-pocket, I never found out. The cost of colloidal silver was about $15 and I didn’t even use the whole bottle. It does not expire and doesn’t have to be refrigerated. This is what they used to use before medicine companies found out that patented medicines make them far more money. Colloidal silver can’t be patented because it’s made of silver, a natural element!

Would I suggest everyone do what I did? No. I know my body and I know what works with it. I wouldn’t suggest to my friend with the brain cancer to stop chemotherapy, even though I know I would never attempt such a thing. It would surely kill me much faster than the cancer. But, that’s just me! However, it bothers me that when it comes to health care, we have no choice, even if we decide to pay out of pocket. It’s truly a scandal.

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Ways To Save Money On Food, Year-Round!

Preserving summerWhen you are intent on making a particular recipe, you may find that the one ingredient you are missing is now too expensive to be worth making the dish. Having that sinking feeling when you go to buy groceries? If it weren’t bad enough that gas is sky-high, food prices have shot up too.

As food prices escalate, you may be wondering how to save money on your food bill. There’s actually a number of different ways to cut costs there. If you are a good cook, it helps to make things at home from scratch rather than buying processed foods. It’s also healthier! But, if you don’t plan ahead, you may end up making a trip to the grocery store only to realize that you could have bought the item already made for less. That’s because certain foods fluctuate in price due to the season and also due to economic conditions, like recently. So, now, we are forced to take the long view in order to save money on food.

So, here’s what I’m doing…

  • Preserving lemons for the winter. Who wants to pay over $1 for a single lemon just because they’re out of season? It turns out to be pretty simple to preserve lemons in the refrigerator too, so that you have a few batches all winter long.
  • Making my own salsa. A jar of canned tomatoes, a few jalapenos, a half of an onion, some cilantro, and some preserved or fresh lemon. Whir in a blender and I’ve just saved $3 a jar.
  • Stock up on basics. Okay, I can pretty much make my own tortillas, breads, pancakes, jams, jellies, etc. So, if I stock up on sugar, cornmeal, wheat flour, and other staples, I don’t have to pay premium prices on convenience foods.
  • Embrace beans. I’m half-Mexican so I can’t say this is all that hard for me. I love beans – black beans, pinto beans, lima beans – you name it! Learn to make soups, refried beans, add them to salads, stews, and more. You can even make dips too, like hummus from garbanzo beans. Buy them dry to save money and learn to soak and cook them properly for meals that are literally less than $1.
  • Hydrate with teas. Iced tea is one of the most economical beverages out there and if you’re not from the South, you should try it.
  • Can your own jellies and jams. Canning kits are very cheap and learning to can is super easy! You can even “sanitize” your jars in the dishwasher, eliminating one of the most bothersome steps of the entire process. Canning your own jellies, jams, fruits, and vegetables, allows you to buy when in season and can them for later use.
  • Build a year-round pantry. Buy extras when things are on sale, like extra canned pumpkin during Thanksgiving or things that you know will keep for a year. Then, use them out of season.

Once you have a little breathing room, you can start planning your meals way ahead of time – keeping you from landing in the store when the price of the “must have” mayonnaise is $6 a jar. Or, by then, you’ve learned to make your own mayonnaise and skipped the trip to the grocery store altogether, saving gas.

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