UpFront | Published in July 2012

Healthy, Wealthy and Wise

Good health leads to retirement savings

By Rebecca Moore | July 2012
Illustration by Dave Calver

An increasing number of employees view working longer as the solution to securing adequate retirement savings. However, many employees are forced to retire earlier than planned due to health or disability issues. To help employers better prepare their workers for retirement, the Principal Financial Group introduced a new approach in a white paper “Wellness = Retirement Savings.” For employees, wellness plans can reduce out-of-pocket medical expenses, leaving more discretionary income for retirement savings.

“Health and wealth go hand in hand,” says Lee Dukes, president of Principal Wellness Company, a subsidiary of The Principal. “Without good health, acquiring significant wealth and being able to enjoy it through retirement become more difficult to achieve for employees. It’s a matter of a shift in thinking. Instead of only focusing on saving more for retirement, employers can put a much greater emphasis on helping employees stay healthy, so they spend less on health care. Spending less means they will potentially have more to save.”

The white paper provides considerations for employers implementing wellness plans, including: aspects of a good wellness plan; addressing health and wealth management through total wellness; and best practices for structuring a wellness plan.