Being healthy and wealthy go together. If you don’t enjoy good health, you may not be able to put the same level of energy and commitment into work and business as you could if you were fit. Even being overweight can affect your earnings. A 2014 survey of Swedish, American and UK men found that those who were obese earned on average 16% less than their slimmer brothers.*
But the financial benefits of a healthy lifestyle don’t stop there.
Saving money by staying healthy
Of course, smoking and alcohol are unhealthy and expensive habits. A pint a day in a London pub could cost you more than £1000 a year. Smoke just a single cigarette with it (outside of course) and you are already burning through another £150.
The effect of coffee on health is still a matter of debate. But the effect of adding a Danish when you order that skinny latte on your way to work is not. Budget for another £500 a year, and a massive extra calorie intake.
The costs are more than financial. Unhealthy living means a cost to your wellbeing and even your life expectancy, as well as to your wallet.
Save money by cutting down on your unhealthy indulgences, and the savings mount up.
If you can who can show your insurance provider that you lead a healthy lifestyle you may be able to save up to 15% on your private medical insurance.
Those seeking out a life insurance policy will probably find themselves hit with higher premiums if they’re overweight, as they’re perceived as more at risk of a whole range of medical problems including heart disease.
What can you do?
A January detox after the excesses of the Christmas break could be a good start. Going to the gym, or at least walking rather than taking the car could also be a new year resolution worth keeping.
But while it’s true that a healthy lifestyle can significantly improve your chances of staying well, Illness and accidents can strike anyone, including the young, healthy and active.
There are obvious financial implications to you being ill. If you are your family’s primary income earner, your income could dry up, and the mortgage, rent and utility bills don’t stop coming in simply because your salary does. Even if you are not the main breadwinner, there is a financial impact for everything that you do. Taking children to school, for example might not seem to have a cost apart from the time it takes. If you need a taxi to pick them up and drop them off, the costs become substantial.
In just the same way, the simple things, going shopping, cooking and cleaning could all become costly if you had to pay someone else to do them for you.
Protecting your finances against illness
Health insurance can help take care of the cost of treatment, but not the cost of recovery, or for the additional costs that result from not being able to take of the everyday things we all take for granted.
That’s why it makes sense to consider other forms of health-related insurance cover, such as critical-illness cover or payment protection insurance. These can help replace an income if you were to become ill, on a temporary or permanent basis. The costs can vary widely, and to get the best solution for you and your family you really need expert, individual advice.
At Continuum, we are ready to help. Call us now on 0345 643 0770, or email us now at [email protected] to get your year off to a healthy start.
*The Economist – One Big Problem – October 7th 2014