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Don’t Judge Me January 13, 2012

Posted by Toy Lady in just general griping, random stuff.

A while back I noticed a trend in the inserts that I get with my prescriptions.

Yes, prescriptions.  In addition to the occasional random antibiotics or ibuprofen,  I’m on a daily blood pressure medication (go figure!) and, a couple of years back, I started an asthma medicine.

Nothing serious, mind you, not really, just, well, I guess it’s just my misspent youth catching up with me.   That, and genetics.  My mother’s had high blood pressure for pretty much as long as I can remember, and, her left-handedness notwithstanding, I guess I’m my mother’s daughter.

Anyway, I have my prescriptions filled at one of our local supermarkets – the one that we don’t shop in weekly.  My reasoning for this is that I can run into that store once a month or so and pick up the few items there that are priced better than at our regular supermarket.

So I noticed almost right away that the pharmacy sticks coupons in with the blood pressure medication.

A dollar off any produce.

Another dollar off their store-brand yogurt.

Nice, huh?

After all, this supermarket’s stated philosophy is to encourage a healthy lifestyle – and how better to promote  healthy living – not to mention a healthy profit margin – than to encourage people to buy their house brand of Foods You Feel Good About?

Then I noticed something else.

I noticed that, while this particular supermarket was bending over backward to encourage me, as a customer with high blood pressure, to eat their canned beans, their frozen veggies, and their fruit-on-the-bottom yogurt, as an asthmatic, they don’t give a flip what I do.

Not a single coupon tucked in the package with the $200 inhaler.

No, I don’t personally pay that for that prescription – but my insurance company does.  And they couldn’t even give up a stinking dollar coupon for a box of tissues or a can of coffee?

Yet they seem to think I need encouragement to eat healthy – because I have high blood pressure.

Now obviously, they don’t realize that I routinely cook beans from dry – rather than buy full-of-sodium, canned beans.

And I prefer  fresh fruit and honey with my plain yogurt rather than processed, loaded-with-sugar, fruit-on-the-bottom stuff.  I put my fruit on top, thank you.

And veggies?  Puh-lease.  Um, garden?  Herb garden?  Public market?  I’m going to eat store-bought frozen vegetables?

Not so much.

Asthma?  Well, sorry about your luck.

High blood pressure?  I must be a fat, unhealthy slob who needs to be enticed by dollar coupons to step away from the Big Mac.

Is it time to change pharmacies, or am I just being overly sensitive, I wonder?



1. mazco34 - January 13, 2012

Cheer up, Toys.

You could be epileptic and asthmatic,with a case of high blood pressure, in addition to having hypothyroidism and high choresterol.

One delivery from the mail order place is over $300.

And I don’t get any coupons…….

Yikes, Maz. That’s. . . crazy, man. I should be sending you my coupons!

2. Kimberly - January 13, 2012

I don’t get prescriptions filled there, but one of my coworkers shared a coupon from her prescriptions and I thought it was awesome ($1.00 off the store brand olive oil).

“And veggies? Puh-lease. Um, garden? Herb garden? Public market? I’m going to eat store-bought frozen vegetables?” Don’t knock convenience! I find the quality of frozen vegetables is often far better than some of the stuff at the public market shipped in from god-knows-where this time of year anyway. I am willing to bet that the nutritional content of the flash frozen vegetables from weggies is higher than some of the stuff that has been handled for days at the market (again, the summer time is a different story).

If you don’t want your coupons I will gladly use them. 🙂

It’s not the coupons themselves I object to – it’s the assumption, based on one prescription, that I don’t eat properly that I find insulting. If they handed out similar coupons with every prescription, that would be far different.

As for the public market, I do pass on out-of-season, shipped-in produce – I’ll wait for the local asparagus rather than buy Chilean stuff in January, and I stock up on fresh garlic in August and September so I don’t have to buy the stuff from China. When it comes to local vegetables – even now, root crops and greens are still just fine – you can’t beat it. And I don’t have an issue with frozen vegetables, necessarily – though I’m not super-fond of that new “steam-fresh” stuff that they’re pushing.

Kimberly - January 13, 2012

I thought you were shunning the frozen veggies in addition to feeling like they don’t think you are eating well. I could see where you would be bothered by it… I guess I like to think the concept of they are doing comes from a good place though? I would be willing to bet that a lot of people with high blood pressure do not eat well. What if this does help them to eat better?

I read your blog because I really enjoy hearing about the ingredients you are using and the meal planning, etc., but we whole-foodies are in the minority! I think a lot of people need incentives to eat better. All this being said though, I am not naive enough to think all of this comes from a completely good place on the store’s part, of course they are encouraging people to spend more in their store though.

Of course not! I’ve got my own stash of frozen vegetables! But I have tried those microwave-steam veggie packs that they’re pushing now, and, honestly, I don’t like them. They taste like. . . plastic. 😦

And truly, I understand the coupon thing, and even “here’s a coupon for healthy-ish food” – but surely they could just hand them out with all prescriptions, rather than singling out just the high-BP fatties. It just seems so. . . I don’t know. Judgy.

3. Kimberly - January 13, 2012

Here is an article about it: http://www.eatingwell.com/nutrition_health/nutrition_news_information/fresh_vs_frozen_vegetables_are_we_giving_up_nutrition_fo

As I said, I don’t take issue with frozen vegetables – I take issue with a supermarket assuming I don’t eat vegetables because of one prescription. . .

4. Alicia - January 13, 2012

I don’t think you are being overly sensitive… but your rant does point out the flaws in their logic.

Thanks. . . I’m kind of conditioned, I think, to assume that I’m probably being unreasonable. . .but man, this has been bugging me for a long time!

5. anne - January 13, 2012

I think you should make up some cards with the URL of this blog, and hand one to the pharmacist when you get your prescriptions filled. Perhaps if they’d read your blog, they’d know better than to try to sell you canned beans!! And herbs?? Duh ……

I am always amused with the grocery “valuable customer” cards and their associated offers. I get a couple every week, and supposedly they’re hand picked offers just for ME. Invariably, they include a chub of ground beef or Jimmy Dean sausages or something. Surely my records show that I haven’t purchase any meat products in the last several years!??!?

And I sure hope the WalMart pharmacy isn’t tracking my purchases recently. They’ll be calling the CDC. Anti-inflams (me); Prednisone (dog); antibiotics (dog); gall bladder cleaner (dog). They really must wonder what is wrong with me!!

Heh, Anne, maybe there’re trying to “help” you out with the meat! 😆

Our supermarket prints “just for me” coupons at the checkout, too – they keep trying to push Hot Pockets on me. 😕

6. susanklement - January 16, 2012

Yeah, that would irritate me a bit, too. I have people surprised at what I eat all the time, but it is possible to eat lots of fruits and vegetables and still be overweight! Geez, as you say, judgy much?

Still, I would think they are trying to do something nice while at the same time promoting sales in the store (i.e., the word may have come from the grocery store chain, not the pharmacist), and that sort of thing is everywhere, so I would try to ignore it. People will be ignorant, you can’t change them. You can only control your response, so I try to just not let them get to me. Who really cares what they think anyway? Especially when they have demonstrated that they don’t know what they are talking about. Lots of thin people have high blood pressure anyway.

Susan, you’re right. I can’t change anyone else. And I know it’s a store policy – this supermarket chain is based here in town, so I’m very familiar with their policies. Not fair to blame the pharmacy department for something that’s probably automatically generated. . . though maybe it wouldn’t hurt to offer some “customer feedback” regarding this issue. Politely, of course. 😉

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