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Most of us have some habit we know we should kick, whether that’s indulging a sweet tooth or eating out less or skipping exercise. We know we need to make healthy choices for our own sakes and our family’s. But here’s some extra motivation: being healthy saves money.
Studies from a 2018 National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) found that people who are unhealthy earn less, save less, and accumulate less wealth over the years than healthy people. Why? Being unhealthy can affect a person’s ability to work, increase their medical costs, and shorten their life, losing time for investments to grow. Let’s look at some numbers:
Even knowing that unhealthy choices hit your wallet as much as your quality of life, it can still be tough to resist temptation. It can help to break it down and think about how much each of those small choices can cost. Let’s look at how the numbers could add up, using a person living in Texas in 2020 as an example:
If those yearly numbers don’t give you pause, remember that these numbers are based on average prices and behaviors for one person for one year. Adjust those numbers for what you typically spend for your family and multiply that out for a lifetime, and you’ll see the numbers add up. Factor in how your health can affect your income, medical and insurance costs, and savings potential, and you’ll see just how much you can save by making healthy choices.
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