Why do insurers
require medical tests?
insurance sums above certain levels, an insurer may require
prospective clients to undergo medical tests. Basically before
“buying the car”, an insurer may wish to “look under the
Typically, these tests
- a Blood
test (testing for cholesterol, liver function, HIV, Hepatitis,
- a urine
- a blood
- a series
of general health questions; and
further testing depending on the sum insured and health of the
will be performed by a paramedic, nurse, or a doctor. It will
usually take place in your home or office, and is performed at the
expense of the insurance company. You should plan on spending 30
minutes for a full exam, plus an additional 30 minutes if further
tests such as ECGs are included.
“Presenting the Best
Version of You”
aside the general health benefits of improving one’s diet and
exercising regularly, there may be a financial benefit of “living
healthy” in the period leading up to your medical.
preparing for the exam, you can help to avoid unnecessarily
abnormal results, which could affect your insurance rates. This is
a great way to ensure you qualify for the most affordable insurance
policy. It may also improve your health…
note does not substitute for advice from a health
professional. It is general in nature and you should make
your own enquiries as to whether such measures are suitable for you
and your health.
8-28 Days Before
- If you
have this much time available before your exam, you may be able to
make a marked difference to your health by making changes to your
diet and taking up some form of (light) exercise.
over-consumption of salty, fatty and sugary foods isn’t good for
you(!). And if you have gone over the edge in these areas, you may
present with poor results, especially your cholesterol and blood
- So, as
far as cholesterol goes, butter, seafood and anything cooked in
animal fat should be cut down or removed for the short
what you may read in papers and on TV, olive oil isn’t good for
you. It is pure fat and therefore laden with calories. Don’t load
up on this thinking it is a decent alternative to other oils. 1/3
of a cup of olive oil has more calories than 3 Mars Bars (Sorry,
that doesn’t mean you can stock up on the Mars Bars).
and grilling food is the healthiest way of cooking. Over the next
few weeks you should aim to gradually increase the amount of food
you cook this way.
- Cut out
soft drinks, sports drinks and (worst of all) fruit juices –
they are full of calories.
typical Aussie glass of wine is about 1/3 of a Mars Bar. So, no
matter how much you love your booze, in the light of an impending
medical exam, it can pay to cool one’s love affair for a while. If
you have been giving it a nudge, having a complete break is best,
but it may not be good for any one of your mental health, your
marriage or your social skills.
- So if
you feel the need to have one or two, just for this little period,
make it literally one or two. For the men out there (and lets face
it, this paper is directed mainly towards men), take over the
driving responsibilities from your better half. There may be added
benefits with this approach.
- Depending on your
fitness level, you may need to be careful in this regard. If in
doubt, consult a health professional. Insurance companies
customarily don’t provide insurance to those who have just come off
a heart attack brought on by the first piece of exercise in 10
- If you
are coming off a fairly low base of recent inactivity, you should
not undertake anything more than gentle exercise prior to seeing a
- It may
be that the best option is to simply park the car a half an hour’s
walk away from work every day or every second day. The return
journey gives you an hour of walking and that is a good
sort of gentle exercise done over the space of three to four weeks
should make a difference in how you feel and may be reflected in
your medical results.
- If you
already have a decent level of fitness, then maintaining or
marginally increasing your usual level of activity can
note that if you are overweight or over 40, you should consult a
health professional prior to undertaking ANY programme of
Days Before Your Exam
- It is
now essential to stick to a healthy diet. Minimize the use of
alcohol, salt and avoid sugary and excess fatty foods.
Days Before Your Exam
not drink any alcohol products for 72 hours prior. Alcohol is
processed by the liver and can cause liver enzymes to become
Day Before Your Exam
away from ALL caffeine products. Caffeine can elevate blood
nasal decongestants and pain medication such as aspirin,
acetaminophen and ibuprofen (unless directed otherwise by your
- Do not
participate in any strenuous exercise. No jogging, weight lifting
or swimming. This can cause elevated protein in the
8-10 hours prior to the medical exam taking place. If your exam is
scheduled for 8:00am, begin your fast the night before at 10:00pm.
Do not eat or drink anything except for water until you complete
the exam the next morning.
- Get a
good night's sleep.
Morning of Your Health Exam
eat breakfast or use any form of tobacco before the medical exam.
- Have a
list of your doctors, including addresses and phone numbers on
The rest of your life
It might pay for you to
keep up these newly acquired habits.