Happy New Year!
It’s that time once again when people feel compelled to make new resolutions – whether it’s because they have a new, unspoiled calendar or they’re jumping on the bandwagon with various friends and family. If history tells us anything, many of the them will be based on self-improvement or finances. What if I told you that you might be able to check the box for self-improvement and finances with one new resolved habit?
Resolving to live a healthier lifestyle can make a significant difference to your finances. Yes, it’s possible that getting new gym equipment or investing in new cookware for your healthy eating campaign could make a short-term dent in your bank account. But, I’m talking about long-term impacts.
Do you know how much healthcare is expected to cost in your retirement years? It will be substantial and few of us will have the luxury of employer-provided retiree health insurance. Preparing for and managing those costs will be critical.
One way to help with these costs is maintaining a healthy weight. According to the State of Obesity – The Healthcare Costs of Obesity, “Obese adults spend 42 percent more on direct healthcare costs than adults who are a healthy weight.” Imagine the effect those healthcare costs have on your retirement years. Having higher medical expenditures may mean that you have to delay retirement and may have to forego activities and experiences due to financial constraints. And these are just the financial considerations.
Your weight can have other financial impacts as well. If you need life insurance beyond a group policy through your employer, you may pay extra due to your weight. Insurers have a range of expected numbers when it comes to your height/weight ratio. If your ratio falls outside that range, either above it or below it, you will likely have a higher insurance premium. This increase can be substantial and can really add up over the term of your contract.
While these are just a couple of financial aspects of the “Get healthier” New Year’s resolution, the quality of life considerations are even more compelling. I’ve never met anyone who has said that they wish they hadn’t spent so much time taking care of their health, but I’ve met many who say they wished they had taken better care of themselves when they were younger. You’re never going to be younger than you are now – so take better care starting now!