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Best Life Insurance Companies for Diabetics

Finding the best life insurance company as a diabetic can save you money. Read on to see how.

Diabetes is an ailment that affects a large number of people in the United States. Data from the CDC shows that nearly 10% of the country’s population is diabetic.

Over 80 million people – nearly 35% of the population – have prediabetes, which leads to type 2 diabetes in most cases.

One of the problems with being a diabetic is that you are typically seen as a high risk consumer by insurance providers. Diabetes is known to increase the risk of several diseases as well as the overall risk of mortality. So, diabetics are generally charged a higher rate compared to non-diabetics.

It does not, however, mean that life insurance policies for diabetics are always prohibitively expensive. Even if you have diabetes, you can still find reasonably priced policies if you know where to look.

In this article, we take a look at the best life insurance companies for diabetics, the impact of diabetes on your insurability and how you can get the lowest possible rates as a diabetic.

Top Five Life Insurance Companies for Diabetics

lincoln financial

1. Lincoln Financial

  • Established In: 1905
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: A+

Lincoln National is known for providing excellent coverage for diabetics at very affordable rates. As a diabetic, you can qualify for standard non-smoker rates or even preferred non-smoker rates if have managed to keep the disease under control and do not have any diabetes related complications.

prudential life insurance

2. Prudential

  • Established In: 1875
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: AA–

Prudential is known for its lenient approach towards diabetics. The company does not group diabetics into a single category and charge them high rates. Instead, it determines the insurability of diabetics on a case-by-case basis and pays close attention to the specifics of the disease before deciding on a rate class.

If you have managed to keep the disease well under control without depending on insulin and do not have any diabetes related complications, you can qualify for standard non-smoker or even preferred non-smoker rates.

john hancock life insurance

3. John Hancock

  • Established In: 1862
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: AA–

John Hancock accepts people with Type 1 as well as Type 2 diabetes, as long as the disease is under control. The rates are among the lowest in the industry, especially for people who do not have any major health problems and lead an active lifestyle. This does not mean you have to be competing for a triathlon but it does mean you should be exercising multiple times a week – perhaps even 20 minutes a day.

In fact, John Hancock is the only company to actually reward policyholders for leading a healthy and active lifestyle. The company’s Vitality program offers reward points if you exercise regularly, eat healthy, and see your physician at least once a year for a complete checkup.

You can use your reward points to get great discounts on various products and services and even reduce your annual premiums by as much as 15%. It is a salient plan for diabetics, as it not only offers you life insurance at competitive rates, but also helps you save more money on premiums over the long term through the reward points system.

protective life insurance

4. Protective

  • Established In: 1907
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A+
  • Moody’s: A1
  • Standard & Poor’s: AA–
  • Fitch: A+

Protective offers life insurance policies for diabetics at extremely competitive rates. The company has partnered with Health IQ, an insurance company which specializes in providing coverage for diabetics who lead a healthy lifestyle, to provide life insurance at affordable rates for Type 2 diabetics who keep their blood sugar levels under control through dietary and lifestyle modifications.

aig life insurance

5. AIG

  • Established In: 1919
  • Financial Ratings
  • A.M. Best: A
  • Moody’s: A2
  • Standard & Poor’s: A+
  • Fitch: A+

AIG offers reasonably priced policies for people suffering from Type 1 as well as Type 2 diabetes. If your blood sugar levels are under control and if you are free of diabetes related complications, you can qualify for standard non-smoker rates.

The Impact of Diabetes on Your Insurability

Life insurance companies take a wide range of factors into account while determining the insurability of diabetics.

Type of Diabetes

This is the most important factor that insurance providers consider during the underwriting process. The three main types of diabetes include – Type 1, Type 2, and gestational.

  • Type 1 – Your body is not capable of producing insulin, as a result of which you have to inject yourself with insulin every day. Type 1 is not as common as Type 2 diabetes.
  • Type 2 – Your body is capable of producing insulin, but is resistant to it and cannot utilize it properly. It is the most common type of diabetes, accounting for over 90% of diabetic cases.
  • Gestational – It affects women during the course of their pregnancy. It is a temporary condition which goes away after childbirth in most cases. If it does not, it might lead to Type 2 diabetes.

If you have Type 1 diabetes, you are likely to be charged a higher rate compared to someone with Type 2 diabetes, since the condition can be kept under control only with the help of insulin injections and not through dietary modifications or lifestyle changes.

If you have Type 2 diabetes, you can qualify for lower rates as long as the condition is under control and you do not have any other health problems. Since Type 2 diabetes can be controlled with the help of dietary and lifestyle changes in most cases, it does not have as big an impact on your insurability as Type 1 does.

Insurance providers generally do not take gestational diabetes seriously, since it is a temporary condition in most cases. If it persists after childbirth, it might affect the person’s insurability.

Age at Onset

The age at which you develop diabetes is also a factor that insurance companies take into account while determining your insurability. People who are diagnosed with diabetes at a young age are typically more likely to develop health problems later in life compared to people who are diagnosed with the condition in their 40’s or 50’s.

So, if you have been living with diabetes from a very young age, you are likely to pay more for a policy compared to someone who developed the condition much later in life.

Severity of the Condition

It is important to note that insurance companies do not charge a flat rate for diabetics. Someone who has managed to keep the disease under control is most likely to be charged a lower rate than someone with out-of-control blood sugar levels.

Insurance companies determine the severity of your diabetes on the basis of your A1C levels.

  • If your A1C level is anywhere from 6.0 to 6.9, it means the disease is firmly under control and it is not likely to affect your insurability or policy costs to a great extent.
  • If your A1C level is between 7.0 and 7.9, you will be charged a higher rate than someone whose A1C level is below 7.0. Still, your rates are likely to be lower than what someone who is classified as a high risk consumer pays.
  • If your A1C level is above 8.0, you are likely to be classified as a high risk consumer and charged a much higher rate compared to what low-risk consumers pay.

How You Manage Your Diabetes

Insurance companies also want to know how you control your diabetes. Is it through dietary and lifestyle changes? Is it through medications? Or is it through insulin shots? If it is through medications or insulin, they might also want to know the type and dosage of medications you take and the number of insulin units you need every day.

Insurance providers generally have a more favorable view of people who control their diabetes through dietary and lifestyle modifications than those who control the disease with the help of medications and insulin.

At the same time, keeping the disease under control – regardless of the method – is far more paramount than being careless and allowing your blood glucose levels to increase to dangerously high levels. This is common prudence.

Diabetes Related Complications

If you have diabetes related complications like retinopathy, neuropathy, nephropathy, and ketoacidosis, you are likely to be charged a higher rate than someone who is diabetic, but is free of other health problems.

Medical Checkups

If you see your physician at least three or four times a year, get yourself checked up regularly, and take your medications as and when needed, you are a model patient and are likely to keep your diabetes under control.

It means you can qualify for a lower rate class compared to someone who rarely sees their physician and does not take the necessary precautions to keep their blood glucose levels under control.

Exam vs. No Exam

It should be noted that all the companies listed above require you to undergo a medical exam or at the very least need you to answer a number of health-related questions. They might also require access to your medical reports to get a clear idea of your health condition.

If you have diabetes related complications or if you have been turned down by several companies before, you can look for companies that offer guaranteed life insurance policies.

Some of these companies do not even require you to answer any health related questions. The downside is that the coverage amount is usually lower than what is offered by a fully underwritten policy.

Depending on your age and the severity of your diabetes, you can decide if you need a fully underwritten policy or a no-exam, no-questions-asked policy.

How to Get the Best Rates as a Diabetic?

There are several things you can do to keep your diabetes under control, which in turn can help you get a favorable rating from insurance providers.

  • Lose Weight – Being obese or overweight in addition to being a diabetic not only affects your insurability, but also increases the risk of a number of diseases, not to mention your overall mortality risk. So, change your eating habits and lifestyle and try to maintain a healthy BMI.
  • Exercise Regularly – Regular physical activity can not only help you maintain a healthy weight, but also keep your blood sugar levels under control. Exercise plays a key role in increasing your body’s insulin sensitivity and reduces your dependence on medications and insulin shots.
  • Eat Healthy – Your diet should primarily consist of brown rice, brown bread, non-starchy vegetables, beans, legumes, eggs, skinless chicken, fatty fish, tofu, and nuts. You should avoid eating deli meats, sugary drinks, and pastries. It is a salient idea to avoid processed food to the extent possible. Portion control is also important, as overeating can increase your blood sugar levels.
  • Regular Check-Ups – You should see your physician at least twice a year and get yourself thoroughly checked. Your physician is likely to check your blood pressure, AIC level, cholesterol level, and creatinine level. You should also see an ophthalmologist and a podiatrist on a regular basis and get checked for signs of diabetic retinopathy and neuropathy.
  • Stop Smoking and Drinking – Smoking and drinking are habits that can affect your insurability considerably, even if you do not have any health problems. If you are a diabetic who smokes and drinks regularly, insurance companies are likely to turn you down or charge you exorbitant rates. So, the sooner you quit smoking and drinking, the better are your chances of qualifying for an affordable rate class.

Life Insurance for Diabetics

The key to qualifying for preferred or standard rates as a diabetic is to keep the disease firmly under control. It is certainly not as hard as many people think, especially if you are a Type 2 diabetic. Except in rare cases, you can keep your blood sugar levels in check by following your physician’s instructions as well as the guidelines given above.

How NoExam.Com Can Help Diabetics

We at noexam.com can help diabetics buy life insurance at affordable rates. We can get personalized quotes from the top insurance companies in the industry today and help you choose the right policy from the right company which caters to your needs as a diabetic.

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Jonathan Holloway
November 2, 2018
Jonathan is a licensed life insurance agent at NoExam.com that writes about insurance, personal finance, lifestyle, and sports. See our pages on life insurance, life insurance rates and life insurance companies for more.
Disclaimer: We make every attempt to make sure our information is up to date, but since things change often it is best to double check the data. This review is an opinion. Clicking on links may result in NoExam.com being compensated.