- There is a Wealth + Health connection between reducing the risk for stroke and saving on long term health care costs.
- Clients can follow seven simple steps to help prevent the debilitating physical and financial effects of a stroke or dementia.
- Because of the expense of a stroke, at-risk clients may want to consider putting a financial strategy in place to help secure their financial future.
With stroke being the No. 2 killer worldwide and No. 5 in the United States, and a leading cause of disability, Stroke Awareness Month in May is a good time to talk to your clients about checking in on their heart and brain health. And while you aren’t their doctor, you can make a Wealth + Health connection on how awareness, exercise, good nutrition, and other steps can help reduce the risk for stroke and possibly save on healthcare costs in the long run.
Why consider heart and brain health together?
Some of the same risk factors affecting cardiovascular health are closely associated with the health of the brain. By embarking on a heart-healthy lifestyle your clients can also boost their chances of avoiding the debilitating physical and financial effects of a stroke or dementia.
An effective approach to suggest for heart and brain wellness is Life’s Simple 7. This is a list of behaviors the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association recommended in its 2017 presidential advisory on brain health.
Life’s Simple 7 are:
- Get active
- Control cholesterol
- Eat better
- Manage blood pressure
- Lose weight
- Reduce blood sugar
- Stop smoking
To learn more about the warning signs, importance, and preventative measures for brain and heart health, you can share more in-depth articles on Transamerica’s Knowledge Place with your clients.
Along with potential physical effects, the financial cost of stroke and dementia can be significant. The American Heart Association estimates that 3 out of 5 Americans will develop a brain disease in their lifetime. And by 2030, the total cost of Alzheimer’s, dementia, and stroke is expected to exceed $1 trillion.
The costs that may be incurred after an Alzheimer’s diagnosis include medical treatment, care, and prescriptions, according to the Alzheimer’s Association. Because of the expense, at-risk clients may want to consider putting a financial strategy in place as soon as possible to help secure their financial future.
In addition to individual financial consideration, family members and caregivers can seek help with financial strategies as they assist a loved one who has Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia.
The big picture
Consider talking to your clients about embarking on a heart and brain healthy lifestyle as part of an investment strategy for their family’s physical, emotional, and financial well-being.
The Alzheimer’s Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have developed additional resources your clients can reference including, the “Healthy Brain Initiative,” a series of statements on how public agencies can work to improve cognitive health in the nation’s aging population.
Things to Consider:
- Talking to your clients about their heart and brain health prevention can help reduce the risk of stroke and potentially save on healthcare costs.
- The predicted total cost of Alzheimer’s, dementia, and stroke is expected to exceed $1 trillion by 2030.
- Consider mapping out a financial strategy for clients who are at-risk for developing Alzheimer’s, dementia, or stroke.
This article was prepared by the American Heart Association (AHA). Transamerica is not affiliated with the AHA and does not control, guarantee, or endorse the information. This information does not constitute the practice of medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always talk to your healthcare provider for diagnosis and treatment, including your specific medical needs. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem or condition, please contact a qualified health care professional immediately. If you are in the United States and experiencing a medical emergency, call 911, or call for emergency medical help immediately.
Transamerica Resources, Inc. is an Aegon company and is affiliated with various companies which include, but are not limited to, insurance companies and broker dealers. Transamerica Resources, Inc. does not offer insurance products or securities. The information provided is for educational purposes only and should not be construed as insurance, securities, ERISA, tax, legal or financial advice or guidance. Please consult your personal independent advisors for answers to your specific questions.