In this issue
April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Yes, you can get affordable life insurance even if you have a chronic condition

By Cameron Huddleston

(Cameron Huddleston is a columnist for Kiplinger's Personal Finance)

Purchasing a life insurance policy is one of the most important moves you can make if someone depends on you financially. However, many people believe they cannot buy an affordable policy -- or even qualify for coverage -- because they have a chronic health condition.

A recent study by Genworth Financial found that between 39 percent and 54 percent of adults with pre-existing conditions, including anxiety, asthma, depression, high cholesterol, hypertension, weight problems and sleep apnea, have no life insurance. The fear that the price of a policy will be too high because of their impairment prevents them from buying life insurance, says Ray Dinstel, senior vice president of underwriting at Genworth.

These conditions aren't a barrier to an affordable policy, though. Genworth's research found that anxiety, asthma, depression, high cholesterol, hypertension, weight problems and sleep apnea don't carry a higher mortality rate if they are controlled by medication or other treatment, Dinstel says. So the insurer changed its underwriting guidelines, and now the majority of its applicants with medically controlled chronic conditions actually get the preferred rate (which is Genworth's second-best rate). Dinstel says many other insurers have followed Genworth's lead and have changed their guidelines, too.


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If you have one of these chronic conditions, here's what you need to know about searching for and buying a life insurance policy:

Dinstel says that people with these impairments must be taking medication, not have any significant symptoms or be otherwise healthy to receive an insurer's preferred rate. Most Web sites that offer life insurance quotes, such as Accuquote, will ask whether you have a chronic condition, but not all will ask if it's controlled, Dinstel says.

People with impairments "shouldn't stop at disclosing their condition," he says. "They need to get on the phone with a company representative to provide their full information." Otherwise, they could be quoted a rate that's much higher than what they would qualify for if they had disclosed that their condition was under control. For example, a 50-year-old man who received the preferred rate on a $100,000 term-life policy from Genworth would pay $252 annually. If he received the standard rate, he would pay $348 for that same policy.

You should prepare for the medical exam you'll have to take during the application process. There are a few things you can do to improve the exam's outcome -- or at least not make your medical condition appear worse than it really is.

Fast 24 hours before the exam because this might help lower your cholesterol slightly. Avoid alcohol and fatty and salty foods before the exam, and don't have any caffeine the morning of the exam. Take your medications to ensure your cholesterol, blood pressure or any other condition you might have is under control. Don't do a heavy workout the day before. You'll end up with an elevated protein level, which would make you seem sick. And get a good night's sleep so you're rested and relaxed when you take the exam.

You can't get the preferred rate with some conditions, even if they're controlled. If you have diabetes or a history of cancer, you cannot get the preferred rate, Dinstel says. However, you can qualify for the standard rate. If you currently have cancer, you can't even get the standard rate.

Even if you have a treatable medical condition that is under control, you won't get the preferred rate -- or even the standard rate -- if you smoke. In general, smokers pay twice as much for life insurance as healthy non-smokers do, Dinstel says. When impairments are involved, the rates are even higher. However, you can improve your chances of getting a better rate by quitting. You many qualify for an insurer's best rate after being smoke-free for three to five years.

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