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Are You Fit to Climb the Corporate Ladder?

Healthy Body, Healthier Paycheck

-- By Leanne Beattie, Health & Fitness Writer

College degree? Check.
Professional resume? Double check.
Perfect health? Ah, not so fast.

What does your health have to do with your career? Plenty. Besides having the right skills and qualifications for your profession, you may also want to make sure you’re healthy—if you want to get ahead financially, that is.

A recent study published in the British Medical Journal showed that the healthier you are, the richer you are. Researchers found that healthy employees are more productive at work, earn more and spend more time in the workforce because they take fewer sick days. Employees in poor health, on the other hand, are more likely to be out of work for extended periods of time or forced into early retirement—two factors that reduce overall earning potential.

Research conducted by Professor Martin McKee and his colleagues at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine yielded similar results. They found that an employee's salary is dependent on some seemingly unconnected factors, such as height. Taller people earn more than those of average height. Apparently your adult height reflects your overall childhood health—meaning the healthier you were as a kid, the taller you are as an adult.

The High Cost of Poor Health
Employers have long recognized that healthy employees cost less. Absenteeism due to sickness (related to obesity and inactivity) is expensive and employers are now convinced that good employee health saves money in the end.

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