You should make caring for your health part of your focus. After all, your health and wealth are connected. In fact, the American Journal of Public Health confirms Americans at lower income levels are less healthy than those in higher income brackets.1
It may not be surprising the very poor are in worse health than the very rich. But what is surprising is the study shows each economic class is healthier than the one below them. And children aren’t immune. There are higher rates of chronic diseases like asthma, hearing loss, digestive disorders, and obesity in lower economic classes.
To some extent, income and wealth directly support better health. Wealthier people can afford the resources that protect and improve health. In contrast to many low-income families, they tend to have more stable and flexible jobs. These jobs provide good benefits, like paid leave, health insurance, and worksite wellness programs. They usually have fewer occupational hazards too. Finally, wealthier people have more disposable income. This means they can more easily afford medical care and a healthy lifestyle. In turn, these benefits extend to their children.
Health and income affect each other in both directions. Poor health and disabilities means it’s harder to succeed in school or to secure and retain a high-paying job. Coming out of a pandemic where COVID-19 didn’t target certain wealth classes, we understand why the struggle to regain health and wealth is hard at any income level.
The solution isn’t easy or a quick fix. It requires attention in many sectors, including health care, education, community development, business, and the overall economy. However, the idea that health and wealth are connected lends more credence to strategic planning for your financial stability right alongside improving your health.
While our office may not provide you a gym for improving your health, we do have a team of experts ready to assist with strengthening your wealth. We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have.
(1) Adapted from Urban Institute