tocacco plant Native American Tobaccoo flower, leaves, and buds

tocacco Tobacco is an annual or bi-annual growing 1-3 meters tall with large sticky leaves that contain nicotine. Native to the Americas, tobacco has a long history of use as a shamanic inebriant and stimulant. It is extremely popular and well-known for its addictive potential.

tocacco nicotina Nicotiana tabacum

tocacco Nicotiana rustica leaves. Nicotiana rustica leaves have a nicotine content as high as 9%, whereas Nicotiana tabacum (common tobacco) leaves contain about 1 to 3%

tocacco cigar A cigar is a tightly rolled bundle of dried and fermented tobacco which is ignited so that its smoke may be drawn into the mouth. Cigar tobacco is grown in significant quantities in Brazil, Cameroon, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Indonesia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Sumatra, Philippines, and the Eastern United States.

tocacco Tobacco is an agricultural product processed from the fresh leaves of plants in the genus Nicotiana. It can be consumed, used as an organic pesticide, and in the form of nicotine tartrate it is used in some medicines. In consumption it may be in the form of cigarettes smoking, snuffing, chewing, dipping tobacco, or snus.

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A better lifestyle

Most people on campus scoff at the smoking ban implemented in January of 2008.

Students and staff continue to light up in plain sight of school buildings because a simple policy can’t stop people from engaging in a habit-forming activity. But if these same people still want to maintain cheap premiums for their insurance they may be snubbing out those cigarettes in the future. In the ongoing health care debate, there is now controversy over wellness-based incentive programs which will reward those who are mindful about their health. It may force people to change their lifestyles but it is also the only way to whip this country into shape.

Current regulations allow for businesses to offer incentives based on health factors for up to only 20 percent of the premium paid by both the employer and employee combined. Legislation just passed by the Health and Finance committees will increase this up to 30% for employers and up to 50% for the government.

Allowing for businesses to offer more incentives based on lifestyle will encourage people to begin looking after their own health. That way, controllable factors such as cholesterol and weight will not put an unneeded burden on health care.

The idea is that fiscal incentives will encourage workers to be healthier and thereby cut costs for the employer. If someone gets sick due to smoking, that is thousands of dollars in medical bills that could have been avoided.

“[The aim is to] focus on wellness and prevention rather than just disease and treatment,” said Business Roundtable president John J. Castellani.

And it is true. If businesses award these incentives to those who make an effort to be healthy this will be successful in changing lifestyles. If someone already has a health problem they should not be punished for it. Instead, a person should receive incentives based on the actions they take to help the situation. This could be enrolling in a program or partaking in a medical screening. A person should not be penalized if the program does not work for them; instead their effort should be the thing that is rewarded.

This is what BeniComp Group in Indiana is practicing. The insurance company promotes incentives based on “outcomes, not conditions.”

As explained by Douglas J. Short, their chief executive, an incentive cannot be given out based on whether or not someone is a diabetic, but it can be awarded for managing blood glucose levels.

These sorts of regulations will ensure that people begin practicing healthier habits in an effort to save their pocketbooks and their bodies. Any kind of encouragement to get people to lose weight, stop smoking or work on their cholesterol is a step in the right direction.

By Danielle Fleischman | IDS
Oct. 18, 2009

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