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Can Being Pre-Diabetic Stop You from Getting Life Insurance?

glucose meter with vitamins on a white background

By Byron Udell | May 2, 2019

If your blood sugar is slightly elevated, should this be a red flag regarding your health? How could pre-diabetic glucose readings affect your chances of getting life insurance?

The truth is the healthier you are, the lower your life insurance rates will be. There are six main factors that can raise your life insurance rates and one of them speaks directly to the current state of your health.  And, blood sugar is definitely a red flag for life insurance carriers.

What is considered pre-diabetic?

In addition to your day-to-day glucose readings being higher than a non-diabetic, if you’re A1C (3-month glucose average) is between 5.7 and 6.0, you’re considered “pre-diabetic”. This also means that you’ll be at a higher risk for heart disease and stroke. Not only is there a higher risk for heart trouble, but it’s clearly an issue for life insurance companies. It doesn’t mean you’re not “insurable”, but it will likely mean that you won’t qualify for the lowest available rates. Rather, you’ll pay a bit more, as the risk of death is higher. Makes sense, right?

Remember, life insurance companies understand risk and will charge appropriately for it.

How can prevent this scenario?

If you suspect that your glucose readings are higher than they should be, you might want to visit your own general practitioner before taking the life insurance medical exam. If your personal physician determines that you are indeed pre-diabetic, there are things you can do to lower your A1C to a “normal” range.

  • Shed Pounds – Losing 5% to 10% of your body weight can really make a difference.
  • Exercise– Working-out can help speed up your metabolism while burning glucose – and it’s great for your heart!
  • Eat Right– Eating a diet full of fresh fruits, veggies, nuts and whole grains, can help lower your A1C while giving your pancreas a break. Need some guidance here? We’ve got 3 simple health tips that can help!

Once your A1C is below 5.7 then you should be able to pass your insurance medical exam with flying colors. The secret here is to get healthy before you have to take the life insurance medical exam that’s typically required for many policies.

While you can sometimes get life insurance without a medical exam, you’ll likely pay more and get less coverage.

What if I already have diabetes?

If you’re a confirmed diabetic and your A1C is higher than 6.0 you can get coverage, but it will cost you more than someone who doesn’t have diabetes. For example, once you’re diagnosed with diabetes, you are probably not going to be offered “preferred” or “preferred plus” rates – which are the best life insurance rates in the marketplace.

However, don’t let diabetes get in the way of protecting your family. Life insurance coverage as a diabetic might be possible. In fact, unless your diabetes is “out of control”, it won’t prevent you from buying life insurance. And one could argue that if you ARE diabetic, you need the life insurance even more than someone who isn’t (as your odds of death are higher)… just keepin’ it real. So, don’t just throw in the towel – check it out!

Now call us at 800-442-9899 and speak to a real person! (yes, we’re old school.) You have enough things to think about, so we’ve taken the stress out of shopping for life insurance.

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