What lifestyle Factors Impact Your Health Insurance Premium?
We all dream of leading a healthy life but it is amazing how often we forget to take care of our health. Very few are conscious about the fact that with just a few lifestyle changes, they can easily reverse the cycle of dwindling health and can lead a far more happy and longer life. It might surprise you that a good lifestyle also helps you in reducing the premium that you need to pay for your health insurance. Here, we look at a few factors, especially the lifestyle factors that can impact your health insurance premiums.
Age is the first determinant for deciding the premium amount that you need to pay for your health insurance. Ideally, the premium amount is less with a low age as compared to a higher age. This is understandable as you are less likely to fall sick or need hospitalization if you are a young individual.
The second most important deciding factor is gender. Generally, a woman has to pay a higher Health Insurance Premium compared to a man. This is because a woman is more vulnerable to certain chronic diseases and female-specific diseases that increase their probable visits to a doctor and chances of hospitalization higher. Maternity insurance including prenatal and postnatal care is also available for them which takes their premium amount to go higher.
- Body Mass Index
It is a known fact that people with a higher body mass index have to pay a higher premium in contrast to those with a lower body mass index. A high BMI means obesity that is the root cause of a plethora of diseases like diabetes, hypertension and other heart diseases, joint problems, etc. A high BMI also increases the risk at the time of pregnancy. With increased chances of the health policy getting claimed; people with high BMI need to pay a higher premium. However, if you are exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, your premium amount is likely to go down.
- Tobacco use
It has been comprehensively established that consumption of tobacco, alcohol, snuff, cigarettes, etc. Increase the risk of serious and critical diseases like cancer, liver problems, kidney failure, etc. Many insurance companies even refuse to provide health insurance coverage on this ground. Any usage causes the premium amount to go substantially higher. But if one is consciously making an effort to let go of the habit; the risk starts to decrease gradually and you may see your premium amount going down. You might even be covered for quitting efforts like nicotine patches, nicotine gums, etc. If prescribed by the doctor.
- Family medical history
There are several diseases like diabetes, hypertension, etc. that are hereditary in nature. But the good news is that you can delay it or even avert it by maintaining a healthy lifestyle like exercising regularly and eating a healthy diet. If you have a family history of certain diseases; you are likely to be charged a higher premium amount. But if you can prove a healthy lifestyle and a healthy body, then your premium amount is likely to go down.
- Location of stay
It might seem inconsequential but your location of stay also impacts your premium amount. This is because insurance companies believe climate, cultural aversion to exercise, sedentary lifestyle, lack of healthy food options, etc. often hail from the same region. As a rule, metropolitan cities attract a higher premium than rural areas.
- Choice of profession
Your profession also has an impact on the premium amount. If you work in an environment that exposes you to hazardous chemicals, radiation or higher risk to injuries; you will be charged a higher premium due to increased health risk. Likewise, if you have an extremely sedentary profession like sitting behind the desk all day, you might be charged a higher premium. This is because a sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of getting cardiovascular diseases. If your job requires you to travel intensely especially on an international level; even then you might attract a higher premium.
- Marital status
While no authentic reasons have been proved but married people are considered healthier than single people. Being married gets your premium amount to go down, especially for males.
- No prior insurance
If you are purchasing health insurance for the first time, you are likely to be charged a higher premium. It is believed that they are procuring the policy to get covered for various medical treatments.
Lifestyle factors play a significant role in deciding the premium amount. While a few are beyond your control, you can manipulate several to make them work in your favor.