Financial professionals can be key players when it comes to making sure clients are prepared for a prosperous retirement. You already knew that.
But having enough savings isn’t enough to ensure that your clients enjoy a long prosperous retirement. A complete approach to retirement includes another element of clients’ well-being: health.
Financial professionals who integrate health and wellness discussions can help clients focus on the total picture of retirement, one that includes not just a comfortable income, but also the ability to enjoy the activities they’ve spent a lifetime imagining: travel, visits with family, and exciting new hobbies.
One source cited by the study, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reports obesity is a risk factor for high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, gallbladder disease, sleep apnea, some cancers, general body pain, and “low quality of life” and “all causes of death.”
That’s quite a list for packing a few extra pounds.
More than a third of all Americans under the age of 75 are considered obese, according to the Stanford study. And obesity rates among those 25 to 54, and those over 75, are significantly higher now than they were 12 years ago.
It’s not entirely our fault, the study suggests.
Diet guidelines are constantly changing, and while more of us understand that exercise is good for us, we’ve become too sedentary. Again, not all our fault, considering a shift from manufacturing to “desk jobs,” not to mention that 60-inch high-definition TV and a hundred channels with movies on demand.
“Americans are sitting for longer stretches,” the study reported. “A majority across age groups are sedentary for five or more hours per day.”
One article cited in the study even dramatically reports, “sitting is the new smoking.”
What can financial professionals do to help clients get active?
- Instead of an expensive pen or other gift for a valued client, consider a health tracking aid. So called “wearables” (think Fitbit) are popular. Stanford researches said “wearables are emerging as a powerful means to monitor and nudge individuals to engage in healthy behavior.”
- Skip the big client dinner. Think activities instead. One successful Colorado advisor takes clients skiing and golfing. Wells Fargo sponsors an entire weekend of client skiing and racing at Winter Park resort each year.
- Sponsor a community activity, such as a 5k run or a bike tour. Check out Transamerica’s sponsorships.
- Organize a client day with Habitat for Humanity or other active charity.
- Instead of hosting client one-on-ones at a table, go for a walk. The Stanford study suggests walking during meetings is a good start.
It’s not unusual for clients to ask financial professionals for help with areas outside financial guidance, such as help finding a good tax professional or a good attorney. So why wouldn’t your clients follow your lead when it comes to living a healthier, longer life? What good is having retirement savings if clients aren’t healthy enough to enjoy it?
Neither Transamerica nor its agents or representatives may provide medical, tax, investment, or legal advice. Anyone to whom this material is promoted, marketed, or recommended should consult with and rely on their own independent tax and legal advisors and financial professional regarding their particular situation and the concepts presented herein.
Transamerica Resources, Inc. is an Aegon company and is affiliated with various companies which include, but are not limited to, insurance companies and broker dealers. Transamerica Resources, Inc. does not offer insurance products or securities. The information provided is for educational purposes only and should not be construed as, medical, insurance, securities, tax, legal or financial advice or guidance. Please consult your personal independent advisors for answers to your specific questions.