Staying Healthy Means Lower Life Insurance Quotes
When insurance companies offer you estimates on their policies, they are essentially taking a gamble on your health. Nobody likes to gamble a losing hand, of course, especially when that player is a publicly traded company with an overwhelming profit motive. It is for this reason that insurance companies take pains to protect themselves against undue risk. How do they do so? By evaluating and projecting your health over a period of years and decades. Often such evaluations rely heavily on family histories and recent physical benchmarks, meaning you can do something to alter their value.
There is some truth to the old adage that “healthy means lower life insurance quotes.” Individuals who are in shape tend to command far lower premiums and higher coverage than those who are not, and nowhere is this distinction more clearly drawn than in the realm of body mass index (BMI). Obesity is associated with a host of health problems, from diabetes and cancer to depression and heart disease, so insurance companies often use it as a foremost indicator of overall health. Losing some weight before you go in for tests can save you literally thousands of dollars over the lifetime of that policy.
Other risk factors may take a bit more work. Habitual problems such as smoking and sleep apnea will almost certainly raise your premiums as well, and with good reason. The evidence tying smoking to cancer and heart disease is overwhelming, and chronic sleep apnea tends to significantly increase the risk of stroke. Drug abusers face similar health problems and consequences, particularly if the insurance company performs its due diligence with a battery of tests. The same holds true for alcoholism, hypertension and other theoretically curable disorders.
One thing you cannot control is your family’s medical history. Although there is much we don’t understand about genetics and disease, good data suggests certain issues such as cancer and heart disease may be heritable. Your genetic endowment is hardly the final word on future health, of course, but insurance companies tend to hedge their bets if they believe you have a predisposition toward one disease or another. A good way to counteract such punitive rates is to look around for a company that specializes in that particular health problem. It’s not unusual to get steep discounts simply by working with people who possess a deeper understanding of the medical issues involved.
Your health and your life insurance tend to go hand in hand. Many experts feel that this is empowering, as it allows you to influence your financial future simply by exercising and eating right. Whatever your feeling about it, there remains little question that you will pay more money over a lifetime if you fail to take care of your physical well being. Look around the Web for good tips on healthy living and be sure to get your heart rate up regularly if you want to lower cholesterol and lose weight. Often a few basic preventive measures can extend your life expectancy and quality of life.