Who is the healthiest one of all?

You might think of Craige, my father-in-law, as the proverbial picture of health.  At 57 years of age with regular checkups, healthy eating and exercise, Craige’s lifestyle couldn’t be healthier – or could it?

I can picture my most recent phone conversation with Craige as he was talking about how hard he tries to plan for healthy time with family during his approaching retirement from Ford.  He was probably sprinkling flaxseed on his cereal to keep his cholesterol in check while getting ready for his day.

Craige even kept his good habits on vacation.  During his last vacation to Mackinac Michigan, he skipped the lines for the world-famous fudge that you and I would probably be jostling in.  Instead, he began an 8-mile run, just like he did every single day of the week for more than 20 years.  This run was different, though.  Without any warning, Craige collapsed and died of a heart attack, at just 57!

If Craige had survived just a few more weeks, his only daughter and my amazing wife, Laura, would have been ready to tell him she was pregnant with our first son. He was born very close to Craige’s birthday and named Micah Craige in honor of his wonderful grandfather.

Our family and Craige’s doctor were shocked.  The only less than perfect item in his health was a cholesterol level just 6 points above normal (206), not cause for alarm by most health professionals.

Craige’s legacy lives on as a man who said, “I love you” to his family more in 57 years than most would if they lived to be 500.  Although even clear hindsight cannot explain lost love ones, it should further debunk the common, “it won’t happen to me” mentality and help you strive to live a lifestyle of optimal health.  And don’t forget to tell your family that you love them.

Scott Foster is President of Wellco, based in Michigan.  Wellco works with organizations who want to measurably improve health costs and conditions.   Wellco specializes in health ROI systems, health risk appraisals, corporate wellness programs, speaking, and consulting.  Wellco the developer of the award-winning HealthHammer (TM), the first and only Zero Trend Appraisal (R) system to help companies accurately benchmark and fully achieve flat health costs over time.  For more information, visit www.wellcocorp.com or call 248-549-4247.

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