Social media, work from home improve physical, mental wellness

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The country’s Wellness Index has risen to 72 after falling to 66 in 2020, though it is still less than the pre-Covid level of 78 in 2019, as per an ICICI Lombard study. The survey was conducted by Kantar among 2,011 consumers in the age group 18-50 years in 19 cities.
Though physical and mental wellness continue to be the top factors for defining overall wellness, financial wellness has risen to 12% from 9% last year. Significantly, women in tier 1 towns are driving this growth in financial wellness, even as they are starting to take better care of themselves, both physically and mentally.

Men, on the other hand, are showing significant growth in work-life balance due to the hybrid model of work and working from home. Overall, the wellness index was higher at 71% for the salaried employees who were working from home and 67% for those following the hybrid model, compared with 63% for those working from office.

Another factor that is improving the overall wellness is ownership of health insurance. The overall wellness score was 78% among those who had health insurance, compared with 67% among those who didn’t have it. Among the sub-types of wellness, physical wellness was at 87% for health insurance owners as opposed to 71% for non-owners.
In another surprising revelation, physical wellness (81%) and mental wellness (76%) were found to be higher for those who used social media, compared to those who didn’t (72% and 65%, respectively). As many as 77% respondents used social media to express or talk about it, with Facebook being the most used platform, followed by Instagram and YouTube.

The study also traced the impact of Covid on savings, with 46% respondents saying that 5-10% of their savings were impacted, and another 25% claiming the impact was 10-20%. Those who were not impacted by inflation had a high overall wellness of 75%.

As per the study, stress and depression among respondents have not come down in the past two years, with 26% facing changes in weight and appetite, and 26% suffering from fatigue. This has translated to a mental wellness index of 73%.

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