Too often, we separate our lifestyle choices from our finances.
However, one of the money lessons I’ve learned is that the lifestyle choices we make have a direct impact on our finances.
One of the biggest ways lifestyle matters to money is in the area of health. Your health situation can have a huge influence on your long-term financial fitness. Here are 4 ways that better health can help your finances:
1. Reduce the Chance of Chronic (and Expensive) Conditions
In my own family, and in my husband’s family, I have seen the financial impact that certain chronic conditions can have. Heart disease, hypertension, and Type II diabetes are all conditions I’ve seen first hand. And these situations get expensive.
Problems related to obesity, including the conditions listed above as well as liver and kidney problems, are also expensive health situations I’ve seen first hand.
If you want to avoid these mostly-avoidable chronic conditions, you need to improve your health. You’ll save on everything from medications to insurance premiums. Live a healthy lifestyle now, and you’ll have a great choice of avoiding these expensive health problems later.
2. Lower Health Insurance Costs
Better health often means lower health insurance costs. While premiums are likely to go up each year, no matter what you decide to do with your coverage, you can limit the pace at which your costs increase. The fewer health care visits you make, and the fewer services you need, the slower the rate of your insurance costs.
Being in good health also gives you more options. I’m a big fan of the high deductible plan because it’s much less expensive. I don’t have to worry about meeting the deductible, since my family is fairly healthy. We put the savings into a HSA that can grow for our benefit.
3. Fewer Sick Days at Work
Some companies are switching away from making a distinction between sick days and other personal days. You have a set amount of paid time off, and that’s it. Once it’s gone, time you take off will cost you in terms of lost wages. Healthy habits can lead to a better immune system and fewer sick days. That way, you can use your paid time off for fun things like vacations and hanging out with the family.
When you are unhealthy, and sick regularly, you can end up having to give up pay at work in order to stay home and get better. If you want to make more money throughout the year (and your life), it can make sense to stay healthy.
4. Increased Productivity
One of the best ways to ensure that you are as productive as possible is to remain healthy. When you exercise, eat right, and get enough sleep, you are more likely to be productive. This means you get more done. You can channel that productivity into building a business, or making more money with a side hustle.
On top of that, we make better money decisions in general when our minds are clear. Good health habits lead to better decision-making based on logic and facts, rather than poor money choices based on anxiety, fear, and lack of discipline.