There are already many good reasons why you should be healthy, but I’ll add one more to the list. Being healthy can help make you wealthy. Granted, no one will be out there paying you to be healthy, but when staying healthy, there are tons of ways you’ll be saving money. You can use that extra cash to pay off debt, pump up that emergency fund, or invest—the usual suspects.
Let’s dive in and look at all the ways being healthy will make you wealthy!
You’ll Have Fewer Doctor Visits
One of the biggest perks of being healthy is that you’ll have fewer trips to take to doctor’s offices. This will be beneficial to you in many ways. For one, you can avoid any unpleasantness that may come with these doctor visits, because let’s face it, they are never fun.
As far as money goes, there are two substantial benefits to fewer doctor visits. Suppose you’re not going to a doctor. In that case, you won’t be paying for them too, right?! Regular visits are typically cheaper than seeing a specialist. Still, these visits can add up quickly if you are regularly going.
The other important factor to consider is all the time you’ll be saving by not spending it on with doctors. Another unavoidable truth to doctor visits is that they are rarely quick. Even though you might only spend a few minutes actually speaking to a physician or medical professional, the entire endeavor can be lengthy. Add up the time spent driving there and back (also now saving on gas!), sitting in the waiting room, getting into the exam room, waiting some more, and then taking care of any additional items that need your attention. This is typically hours out of your day.
Why is this time important? Because all time is important! Time equals money, right? You could be spending this time doing a million other things that you need to fit into your day, or even make some money doing a side hustle!
You Won’t Need Medications
Think of all the medications that are out there. Most help correct issues caused by being unhealthy:
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol
- Heart Problems
- Joint Issues
- Weight Loss
It’s great that we can help solve health problems with meds, but you won’t need them if you stay healthy in the first place! Savings will vary based on your health insurance, how often you get a refill, and other factors, but there is no denying that not needing to pay for medications is cheaper than paying for them at all.
Paying Less For Insurances
Insurances are an expense we all have, and we hope never to use or at least use as little as possible. The two insurances most of us have are health insurance and life insurance. Being healthy can help save money with both.
When healthy, because you’ll now need fewer doctor visits and medications, you might be able to lower the amount and types of coverage you need making your overall plan much cheaper. You can also attempt to change your deductible based on your new health spending.
With life insurance, being healthy when initially taking out the policy will result in a lower premium. Even if it only lowers your monthly contribution by $10 a month, that’s $120 a year and about $3600 over the course of the policy. Being a much lower risk to the insurance provider will likely save you much more than that, but this just shows that even a small change can make a big difference over time.
You’ll Be Less Likely To Need Surgery
Being unhealthy doesn’t necessarily mean that you will need surgery one day. Still, it will undoubtedly raise your likelihood of needing it one day. Heart conditions come to mind, as do complications due to weight issues. I’m sure there are many other surgeries you could avoid by being healthy; these are just the ones off the top of my head.
By being healthier in general, you can avoid a lot of unnecessary costs. Insurance will cover most of your surgery, but the amount left on you won’t be pocket change. What if there is physical therapy needed afterward? That’s additional money out of your pocket too. Meds to manage pain, we’ve already talked about how prescriptions can add up quickly too.
You Won’t Miss Work
The funny thing about having surgery is that you typically can’t go back to work immediately. Your body will need time to recover, and you won’t be able to perform your job as best you can if you are on some powerful medication. Many companies will offer long and short-term disability pay, but it’s not always your total salary. By not making as much money as you usually would, the surgery and time away from work is taking that much more money out of your pocket.
Be The Best You That You Can Be
Being healthy will mean that you’ll be able to be the best version of yourself, and that will go a long way. When you are healthy, you’ll have more energy, you’ll have increased brainpower, and overall, you’ll be a happier person.
Any one of these reasons can help you earn more. With more time and energy, maybe you get more done at work and get a better review, perhaps even a promotion! With all the time saved from doctor visits, you’ll have time to start a side hustle or two. Thinking more clearly will again help you at work and, in general, make better decisions with money and everything else.
The benefits of being happy are limitless as well. When you’re happier, you’ll make things happen you never thought possible. Don’t let an unhealthy lifestyle hold you back.
The True Cost of Being Unhealthy
We’ve gone over a few costs of being unhealthy and benefits of being healthy, so let’s take a minute to add these costs up, shall we? These are all estimates which can vary greatly, but I’m attempting to prove a point here!
Doctor Visits – $1000
Time – Priceless, but if I had to put a number on it, let’s go with $500
Prescriptions – $500
Insurance – $240
These are all savings or additional income per year. Add these numbers up, and you get $2240 per year just for being healthy! I don’t know about you, but that certainly seems worth it to me.
Oh, but we’re not done yet. What if you took that 2k and invested it? With an average 7% return rate:
After 10 years, you’d have $4406.
After 20 years, you’d have $8668.
After 30 years, you’d have $17000!
This is just investing the $2240 one time! If you continually invested the money saved by being healthy year over year, with an average 7% return rate:
After 10 years, you’d have $35,335.
After 20 years, you’d have $100,498.
After 30 years, you’d have $228,644!
Seriously, 228k for being healthy; what are you waiting for?!
How to Stay Healthy
Now that we’ve seen the actual cost of being unhealthy, it’s time to start taking our health more seriously. Here are a few guidelines for the best ways to get in and stay in good health.
Eating right is a critical part of being healthy. Many people think that being healthy means buying expensive organic food or eating nothing good, but that’s not the case. In fact, you can save money while getting healthy, and there are plenty of diets that won’t cost a lot. It’s also best not to think of it as a diet which has a temporary connotation. Think of it as a lifestyle change for the better.
Avoid Sugary Foods and Drinks
Ok, so most people, if not everyone, knows that sugar is bad for you in so many ways. Avoiding candy, sodas, desserts, and other obvious foods will certainly help, but the problem is that sugar is in a ton of foods you wouldn’t even think of. Bread, peanut butter, ketchup, yogurts, sports drinks, and many other foods that most of us don’t think of as unhealthy are absolutely packed with added sugars. Before you buy anything, make sure to check the labels.
An effortless way to keep your body in tip-top shape is to simply stay hydrated. The power of drinking good old water can’t be overstated. Being well hydrated allows your body to function to its full potential. Sixty-four ounces of water per day can be hard to hit for most of us, but it’s certainly a goal worth shooting for every day.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep, something too many of us don’t get enough of. It’s estimated that 1 out of 3 adults in the US aren’t getting enough sleep regularly. Lack of sleep can cause havoc on your body. Health risk from lack of sleep include:
- Tired\Lack of Concentration\Memory
- Weight Gain
- High Blood Pressure
- Risk of Diabetes
- Weaker Immune System
The list goes on, and any of these symptoms can cost you money for various reasons. The easy fix here is to get yourself into a bedtime routine at a reasonable hour. Make sure you get the recommended amount of sleep and watch your health improve.
Again, nothing you likely didn’t know already, but you need to get yourself motivated to do. Along with eating right, exercise is the other crucial factor in being healthy. You don’t need to go on long runs, lift tons of weights, or do 1,000 situps. What you do need to do is raise your heart rate for a good half hour every day. How you choose to get that done is up to you.
Don’t Drink Too Much
This one won’t likely be a fan favorite, but it’s true. There is room for most of our lives for alcohol, but only to an extent. Excessive drinking can lead to a multitude of health conditions or, at the very least, give you a beer gut. I’m not saying to cut it out entirely but cut back to only a couple of drinks a week. Avoid mixing with those sugary drinks too, and you’ll be well on your way to better health.
Who wouldn’t want an extra 228k in their pocket, right? Well, it can all be yours for the low, low price of simply living a healthier lifestyle. Saving money on doctor visits, prescriptions, insurance, and a variety of other areas will not only help you now, but by using simple investing strategies, you could literally have hundreds of thousands of dollars in earrings, just for being the best possible you!
Jeff is a fan of all things finance. When he’s not out there changing the world with his blog, you can find him on a run, a Mets game, playing video games, or just playing around with his kids.