Modern lifestyle and technological advancement have provided us with material comfort and higher standards of living more than ever before. On the contrary, our diets became unhealthy, our lifestyles sedentary and many of us consume tobacco and alcohol on a frequent basis — leading to a barrage of lifestyle diseases that affect our personal well-being. Here are some common lifestyle diseases among Malaysians and how medical insurance Malaysia can help with the medical costs.
Diabetes and heart diseases
Heart diseases and diabetes often go hand-in-hand. Some lifestyle factors that increase the risk of both diseases are smoking, having a sedentary lifestyle, having a high cholesterol and sodium diet and drinking too much alcohol. Diabetes is a chronic condition where the body is incapable of using the energy found in food, due to a lack of insulin or an inability to use the produced insulin.
On the other hand, the most common type of heart disease is coronary artery disease. It affects blood flow to the heart due to the buildup of plaque in the blood vessels that supply oxygen and blood — decreased blood flow to the heart and brain can cause a heart attack or a stroke. Other health consequences that follow are heart failure, which leads to swelling in legs and fluid building up in your lungs, making it hard to breathe.
What happens during a heart attack?
Cancer arises from the transformation of normal cells into tumour cells in a multi-stage process, from a pre-cancerous wound to a malignant tumour. These cells can spread to other parts of the body if not treated in time. Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide — millions of people die of cancer yearly around the world and 30% of those diseases are attributed to lifestyle choices.
Some common types of cancer are lung cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer and colorectal cancer. These diseases are caused by a combination of factors such as smoking, inhaling secondhand smoke, being exposed to air pollutants like asbestos and soot, unhealthy eating diets, hormone therapies and a lack of physical activity. Currently, between 30% to 50% of cancers can be prevented through lifestyle changes and frequent medical check-ups.
Body posture problems
Most of us spend an average of 8 hours per day sitting down and working in front of a computer. Even if you are eating healthy and resting well, sitting for long periods can be harmful — it leads to back pains, spine problems and hip joint injuries.
If you consistently sit with poor posture or don’t have an ergonomically designed workstation, you might suffer from back pain. Besides that, spine problems are also caused by poor posture, such as compression in the discs in your spine, leading to painful premature degeneration. If your muscles and joints are weak, you are more likely to suffer from serious injuries from falls and accidents. Medical research suggests that we need 30 minutes to an hour of exercise per day of moderate-intensity activity to combat the dangers of excessive sitting.
With lifestyle diseases on the rise, it is both important to maintain a healthy lifestyle and provide yourself financial coverage for any emergency medical expenses with medical insurance. Having a medical insurance plan that allows you to choose any doctor, clinic or hospital — such as an AIG medical insurance — can provide coverage for the above lifestyle diseases and a range of other critical illnesses. The plan provides you and your family access to comprehensive medical care whether in Malaysia or abroad, including pre-hospitalisation, post-hospitalisation and outpatient benefits.
Head over to https://www.aig.my/personal/medical-insurance#accordion-child_pr_cr_accordion_3 for more details on the AIG medical insurance.