Your guide to lifelong health

view in Web browser

LifeTimesYour guide to lifelong health - December 2013

Your award-winning health and wellness newsletter.

Monthly Focus

Technology Helps
Put the Brakes
on Drunk Driving

Although drunk driving has been declining over the last few decades, the number of accidents and deaths is still alarming. Technology now offers new weapons in the fight against drunk driving. From mobile apps to alcohol detection devices, new technology is helping make our roads safer.


Take our drinking and driving quiz and find out how much you know about this serious public safety issue.

It’s a myth that things like drinking coffee, exercising or taking a cold shower will help sober a person up. Only the passage of time will reduce the effects of alcohol.

— Michigan State University, “Basic Alcohol Information,” 2003

Health & Wellness

Ready. Set. Ask Us Your Health and Wellness Question in 15 Seconds or Less

LifeTimes is looking for a few good health and wellness questions in video form. Selected questions will be answered and shared with readers each month in 2014. Earn a $25®' gift card if your video is selected. Enter your video now through Jan. 31.

‘Mocktails’ Make for Safe Merriment

Drinking in moderation is always best for your health and safety. That can be challenging this time of year. “Mocktails” can help keep the fun going without the downsides of over indulging in alcohol. Get our recipes for festive non-alcoholic mixed drinks.

How to Beat the Holiday Blues

The holidays can often be a stressful time for a number of reasons. Be Smart. Be Well.® offers expert advice to help you manage stress and depression during the holidays. Get our five tips for beating the holiday blues.

Is that Toy Safe?

It’s that time of year again, and everyone is excited about holiday gifts! But how prepared are you? Before you head to the toy store — this month or at any other time during the year — make sure you do your toy safety homework.

In December, you’ll find weekly quizzes, fun facts and toy-buying tips to keep your kids safe and injury-free when you connect to our Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages. Feel free to ask us a question, make a comment or direct message us. We are always happy to help!

Your Benefits & Coverage

Not Just Gizmos and Gadgets

When it comes to medicine, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) stays on top of the best new science and technology. How does BCBSIL make sure you have access to the latest advances in medical care?

We’re Always Striving for Quality

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) has launched dozens of programs to help ensure that you are getting quality health care. Learn what programs may help you and your family.

Blue Star ReportSM on Illinois Providers Now Available

The new 2013 Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois Blue Star Hospital Report can help members make more informed health care decisions. How does your provider rate?

Join the HMO Consumer Advisory Committee

The HMO Consumer Advisory Committee is a group of HMO members who give Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois (BCBSIL) feedback on our HMO plans. If you’d like to help us learn more about our members’ experience, let us know by Dec. 15. What do committee members do?

Resources & Tips

My Health: Is December a SAD Time of Year for You?

If you’re feeling down during fall and winter when there’s less sunlight, you may suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It may boost your mood to spend more time outdoors, eat right and keep regular sleeping habits. For more SAD signs and treatment options, log on to Blue Access for MembersSM, click the My Health tab, then select the Depression topic.

The Affordable Care Act: What’s Changing in 2014

There’s been a lot of talk about the Affordable Care Act and all the health insurance changes that may come with it. Some of those changes are already happening, and there are more to come. Learn about what’s in store for 2014.

Your Life

Discovering a Love of Exercise Transformed Ginny Tipton’s Life

After 30 years of being overweight, Ginny Tipton finally had enough. A personal loss spurred her to stop eating to cope with stress. And meeting the activity challenges she set for herself made her feel so good that she became a personal trainer to help inspire others. How did Ginny go from a lifetime of obesity to becoming a triathlete and fitness trainer?

On Track for Health and Wellness: a Look Back and a Look Ahead

As the year winds down, Clare reviews her progress toward her mental and physical health and wellness goals and shares her family’s progress, too. As she passes the baton, we invite LifeTimes readers to share their own health and wellness questions.

Members Share Tips for Making Healthier Choices

Let LifeTimes readers help you embrace a healthier lifestyle. Read about their best health improvement decisions.

Tell Us Your Story

Would you like to share a healthy tip or your personal journey to better health and wellness? LifeTimes would love to hear about it! If you have something to share, simply email your story to the editors of LifeTimes at And feel free to share your comments on the newsletter at the same email address.

Be sure to let us know how we can reach you. An editor will get in touch with you if we decide to publish your story or tip in a future edition.

Have a healthy day!

Need to update your email address for this newsletter? Simply click on our website in the gray bar below and log in to Blue Access for MembersSM. Click on the “Manage Preferences” link on the right side of the home page. Update your email or any other information on your User Profile page.
Go Mobile