Monday, March 27, 2017


It Is Possible To Become A Healthier & More Active Family Without Breaking The Bank.

September 14, 2016 by  
Filed under Health & Wellness, Money, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThySistas.comThere’s a common misconception that in order to lead a healthier life, you have to spend more. Because of this, a lot of families who are living on a budget believe that they can’t afford to live in a healthier and happier way. However, the fact is that’s not the case. Admittedly, being healthier can be more expensive, but that’s not to say it has to be.

If you ask someone who makes it their life goal to live healthier about how they afford it, you’ll be shocked by how budget-friendly it can be. Living healthily can be expensive, but if you know how to stick to a budget, it doesn’t have to be. The most important thing is being savvy about where you shop and where and how you and your family exercises.

It is possible to become a healthier and more active family without breaking the bank. It’s just a case of making a few small lifestyle changes and taking note of all the best advice for being a little savvier with your spending. Hopefully, the below tips will help you to do just that.

Storm your supermarket’s reduced section

Obviously, in an ideal world, you would be able to fill your fridge with lots of fresh produce for a low price. However, the price of fresh fruits and vegetables is incredibly high. This means that it isn’t always affordable to get all the produce that you need. The good news, however, is that if you opt to buy reduced food, it’s much more affordable. Most supermarkets have a reduced or clearance section where all the fruit, vegetables, meat and fish that is going out of date is stored. The food in this section will be marked at a much lower price than its fresher counterparts, making it more affordable. The fruits and vegetables found in the reduced section tend to last 2017black-family-eating_excludefor at least three days in the fridge, sometimes longer. Or, if you opt to freeze them, you can keep them fresh for months. The same applies to meat and fish; most items will last for a couple of days after their best before date if stored in the fridge. Or, if frozen, will keep for months. By buying reduced foods at a lower price, you can make it much more affordable for you and your family to lead healthier lives.

Make walking your mode of transport

Did you know that walking is one of the very best ways to get in and stay in shape? Walking not only burns fat, but it also tones your entire body. So it’s a fantastic way to get yourself and your children healthier. Instead of taking the car here, there and everywhere, make walking your new mode of transport. Just think, by opting to walk whenever you can, you’ll not only become healthier but will also save money on the cost of running your car. The money you save can be put towards your new, healthier lifestyle. Don’t drive to work or to drop the kids off at school, leave half an hour earlier and walk. It might take a little longer to get places but walking is a great form of free exercise, so it’s worth making the time and effort. If the kids don’t like to walk, perhaps they could use a scooter or bike to get around?

Be savvy about how you shop

When it comes to shopping, be it for food or for sportswear for your new healthier lifestyle, be savvy about it. Don’t just shop at the first place you see, take the time to find the places that offer the best deals. A great way to go about this is by comparing store prices online – there are plenty of comparison tools for doing this. So whether you’re shopping for groceries or sportswear, you can check which company offers the best price. Another way you can be a savvier shopper is by finding ways to save. We’ve already mentioned buying reduced produce, but how else can you cut the costs of your healthier lifestyle? One option for keeping living costs low is to buy gift cards from a gift card exchange store for a low price and use them to do your shopping with. When it comes to where to grab gift cards from, there are plenty of stores that offer reduced price gift cards. These tend to be for popular stores like Walmart and Dicks Sporting Goods. These are a great way to save money as for a $50 gift card; you’ll probably only pay $30, meaning you save $20.

Find ways to stay active for free

We’ve already mentioned walking instead of driving, but how else can you and your family stay active for free? Gyms can be great places to work out, but the problem is they’re expensive to use. So if you want to become healthier on a budget, the best thing to do is to find ways to be active for free. There are plenty of options to choose from; it’s just a case of choosing ones that work well for you and your family. Cycling can be a good one, as it’s fun and everyone in the family can take part. If you’re not too keen on the idea of cycling on the roads, find a local cycle path to use instead. You could pack up a picnic and spend a day cycling as a family – just think how enjoyable that would be. Or, how about building an assault course in your garden and spending the weekend challenging each other to it? Kids love these types of activities because they’re fun and exciting. They’re easy to create and are a great way to burn calories and keep in shape. If you’ve got a beach near where you live, how about going for a dip a couple of times a week? Swimming is a fantastic form of exercise and one that kids tend to love. Of course, if your local pool isn’t too expensive, you could swim there. However, if it is pricey, the sea could be a better option.

Bulk meals out with grains

Brown rice, couscous, pearl barley, and quinoa are all healthy grains that are ideal for using to bulk out meals. They’re full of protein and fiber and are fantastic for making meals go that little bit further. If you want to ensure that family mealtimes are healthy as well as affordable, bulking your meals out with grains could be the answer. Not only do whole grains make meals go further, but they also help to keep you and your children fuller for longer. This means that you’ll snack less, and so, will eat less overall. To make meat dishes go further, serve them with rice or couscous. Or, how about using rice as the main part of the meal and making a vegetable packed risotto or chicken or fish paella? Grains don’t just have to bulk meals out; they are also ideal for using as the main part of a dish. It might not be a grain, but the same could be said for potatoes. They make a great way to bulk a meal out or can be the main part of a meal. They’re healthy and filling, which makes them ideal.

Grow your own produce

It’s no secret that buying organic fruits and vegetables is better for us. However, due to the high prices that come with organic foods, it’s almost impossible for families who are on small budgets to afford. The answer to this problem is simple – grow your own produce. Believe it or not, growing your own fruits and vegetables is much easier than you would think. Admittedly, it may take some time and hard work, but it’s fantastic way to make being healthier more affordable. You can grow a whole patch of carrots for under a dollar – the price a small bag of non-organic carrots would cost to buy. By growing your own produce, not only is it cheaper to lead a healthier lifestyle, you can also teach your children about where food comes from. This is an important life lesson that all children should learn. By learning about their food and where it comes from, your children can make informed choices about what they put into their bodies.

A lot of people believe that to be able to lead a healthier lifestyle; you need a large budget. However, that’s not always the case. If you’re smart about where you shop and how you shop, as well as the meals you serve, it is possible to eat healthily without breaking the bank. As for exercise, you don’t need a gym membership to keep yourself and your family in shape. There are plenty of ways you can stay active without spending a penny; it’s just a case of being willing to get creative. The gym isn’t the be all and end all of exercise, walking, cycling and swimming in the sea are all great ways to workout without having to spend.

Staff Writer; Sheila Green


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