(ModernSurvival.org) – When a person begins considering living a healthier lifestyle, they usually focus on the physical benefits such as looking and feeling better. But there are many financial benefits to consider as well. As the saying goes, “the greatest wealth is health.” A healthy lifestyle will improve your overall quality of life and swell your bank account. Here’s how:
Remove Costly Unhealthy Habits
Unhealthy habits cost a person a lot of money while at the same time destroying their body. While changing those habits might be a daunting task, the financial benefits of doing so are often shocking. Consider the following habits and the costs associated with them.
It’s a universally known fact that smoking is bad for the body. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), smoking causes an alarming number of health issues including:
- Heart Disease
- Lung Disease
- Chronic Bronchitis
Not only does this habit wreak havoc on a person’s health but the costs associated with it pile up quickly. In the United States, the average price of a pack of cigarettes is $8. For a two-pack-a-day smoker, this is nearly $6,000 per year.
Excessive alcohol consumption isn’t just bad for your wallet and your health, it’s often deadly. In fact, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) lists this as the third leading preventable cause of death in America.
The costs associated with excessive alcohol consumption are generally less than cigarettes on a per-drink basis ($2.05). However, the price skyrockets when the side effects of intoxication are added in. CDC data shows that damages from drunk driving collisions cost $13 billion annually in America. The price tag associated with a DUI averages out to $4,100 once the fees and fines are calculated.
While the occasional snack isn’t necessarily a bad thing, eating junk food regularly isn’t good for you or your bank account. Replacing salty and sugary snacks with healthy food options leads to a reduced appetite and spending less money on food.
Cooking at home is a great way to start saving money as well, considering Americans dish out $1,200 a year on fast food. Not only will cutting out trips to your favorite fast food joint save money on the food itself and the gasoline used to get there, but it will also improve your health. Consumption of fast food has been directly linked to obesity, which comes with a variety of costly health issues.
Get Moving to Save Money
To many, the thought of starting an exercise program is comparable to volunteering for torture. The idea of getting up and running, stretching, or lifting weights seems like a chore at best. However, the benefits of exercise on the body are of great value.
Consider that $117 billion is spent annually in America on healthcare associated with inadequate physical activity. According to the CDC, over 41% of Americans are obese, putting them at risk of health conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, gallbladder disease, and Osteoarthritis, to name a few. Inactivity is also the cause of 1 in 10 premature deaths in the United States.
An active lifestyle doesn’t just help prevent costly medical bills. It’s proven to increase attention, improve memory, and boost mental health. In turn, these benefits improve a person’s quality of life and professional performance.
Long-Term Financial Benefits of Living Healthy
Cutting out unhealthy habits from your life and becoming active will immediately benefit your financial stability. However, the real effects of these decisions appear further down the road.
Cheaper Life Insurance
The healthier a person is, the less likely a life insurance company will have to pay out, and therefore their life insurance rates tend to be less than those who make unhealthy choices. This is why life insurance companies ask about a person’s lifestyle during the onboarding process. Healthier choices lead to lower premiums.
Fewer Medical Costs
Taking care of your body is the best way to avoid massive medical bills in the future. On top of that, it also helps avoid the income loss that comes with chronic illness. Many of the top diseases plaguing Americans, such as heart disease and obesity, are preventable with a healthy lifestyle.
The benefits of living a healthy lifestyle are multi-tiered, from saving money to feeling better and having more energy throughout the day. While exercising, quitting bad habits, and eating right might be overwhelming to some, the costs of living an unhealthy lifestyle shouldn’t be taken lightly.
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