Data and Research

Healthy Lifestyle Important to Retirement Planning

People aspire to a more active retirement lifestyle, and staying in good health can help achieve their goals.

By PLANSPONSOR staff | June 06, 2017
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Retirement has become an active stage of life—one people have positive ideas about. For example, they aspire to stay socially connected, participate in their communities and remain economically active, according to the 2016 Aegon Retirement Readiness Survey.

Globally, the majority (72%) of people associate positive words with retirement, including “leisure” (46%), “freedom” (41%) and “enjoyment” (31%). People ages 65 and older have more positive associations with retirement than do younger people, ages 18 through 24.

The two most widely held retirement aspirations among respondents are traveling (62%) and spending time with friends and family (57%). Twenty-six percent mention some form of paid work as a retirement aspiration.

Achieving retirement aspirations requires more than saving, investing and planning, however; it also depends on staying in good health, the survey report notes.

Globally, 68% of respondents characterize their overall health as good (51%) or excellent (16%). One-third say their health is only fair (29%) or poor (3%).

People report having concerns about their health in older age. Forty-three percent say their health is a primary concern, and 39% say it is a minor concern. Despite these worries, only 43% of respondents agree with the statement, “I think about my long-term health when making lifestyle choices,” and 57% say “I eat healthily.”

Workers in excellent health (78%) are more likely to say they are very/somewhat aware of the need to plan financially for retirement compared with workers in poor health (63%). They are also seven times more likely to say they are extremely/very confident of achieving a comfortable retirement (49% compared with 7% of those not in excellent health).

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