The connections between health and wealth are numerous but easily overlooked when we’re too focused on improving one or the other. It’s easy to forget that health issues can devastate our finances and poor health may lead to us making bad financial decisions. On the contrary, the benefits of maintaining good health can include better productivity, less time off sick, and a more positive outlook on life, all of which make it easier for us to make smart financial choices.
Here are a few bad habits that if kicked, would make you both healthier and wealthier:
Cutting our cigarettes is an easy way to add years to your life. You’ve heard the health risks that come with smoking: heart attack, stroke, lung cancer, coronary heart disease and more.
In addition to the money you’d save on purchasing cigarettes (an average of $6-$8 per pack), stopping smoking will also save you on health care costs. Insurance premiums for smokers almost always cost more than those of nonsmokers.
Cut the excess calories from fast food and high calorie processed foods. A balanced diet leads to a healthy weight. Being at a healthy weight means better health both mental and physical.
In turn, better health means you’ll have lower insurance premiums as well as lower life insurance rates. It’s estimated that healthy people save, on average, $1,429 more each year than people who are obese.
You don’t need to follow an aggressive exercise program to be active. Merely adding a 30-minute walk each day can drastically lower risks of developing a chronic health problem.
Adding exercise, even if it’s minimal, is similar to the way we increase wealth. Exercise includes setting goals, staying disciplined, and maintaining positive habits. If you can do one or the other, exercise or saving, you can do the other.
Whether you aim to increase your wealth or to better your health, work to find a balance between improving both.