For lots of people, January means a fresh start or perhaps trying that little bit harder to eat more healthily and fit a bit more exercise into their lives. Eating healthily can often come across as being very expensive though, and I think that probably put lots of people off, or gives them an excuse not to bother even trying! Working out how to be healthy on a budget is not always that easy, and it can take a bit of planning, but is definitely doable.
I know not everyone wants to eat Quinoa or drink veggie smoothies every day, but we do all want to be generally healthy and to live a long and healthy life, so if we can be eat better and fit in a bit of exercise in 2017, without spending more money, then I think that’s great.
My Voucher Codes have put together a video based on this, with lots of tips showing you how to save money whilst staying healthy. You can watch it here:
I tend to eat pretty healthily anyway, but we are looking for ways to save some money right now and I have just started exercising again, but it’s not always easy; so there are lots of these tips that I really want to put into practice.
Some of my favourite tips from the video and the ones I particularly want to use are:
- Make a list and stick to it only buying what you need – We’re very bad at this at the moment; we tend do lots of little shops when we need things and nip to Aldi or Lidl regularly which are cheaper than other supermarkets, but that can make us lose track of what we have actually already bought as well as buying a few extra bits every time we go, therefore spending more money than if we’d made one trip.
- Plan your meals then batch cook and freeze when you have time. Life is busy and we don’t always have the time or energy to think of something for dinner every evening, that Ava will actually eat, won’t take ages, and is good for us. By roughly planning meals for the week we eat so much better, save money, and I am much more likely to start the dinner when I get the chance during the day. Batch cooking also works brilliantly for our family – we make big portions of spag bol, chilli, or pasta sauce with tons of veg in (and then blended so Ava has no idea!) and then freeze them in portions so we always have something quick and healthy for dinner if we need it, especially when we don’t have much time but I still want A to have a healthy meal.
- Check out the reduced section of your supermarket for bargains. I’m one of those people who is slightly obsessed with the reduced section in supermarkets (I got it from my mama), and I may admit to stalking the man with the gun (in related news: I used to reduce all the bread to 10p when I was 16 and worked on the Bread and Cakes section at Tesco). I would like to visit some local shops (particularly the M&S food near me!) at certain times of day more often though, at times when I know I am likely to get some bargains. It can make a huge difference to your shopping bill by getting a few of your meals for that week for a fiver! Then I’ll freeze them and get them out the morning they are needed.
- Buy cheaper cuts of meat – I love meat, and while a lot of our meals are completely meat free, we do still eat a decent amount. I would really like to find some great recipes for dishes that use slightly cheaper cuts of meat that aren’t so popular, but are still really tasty. I’d also like to find a few more meat free recipes to cook sometimes.
- Bring your own lunch into work rather than buying sandwiches on the go. This is more for the boy than for me – he tends to buy his lunch out rather than making sandwiches at home to take with him. We really need to save some money at the moment though, so he’s trying to take his own lunch which will also be better for him.
- Ditch the takeaways and make your own healthy ones at home – we actually very rarely have takeaways, plus I’d rather go out for a meal if we are going to spend that much on food. But sometimes we do fancy one but don’t really have the spare cash to spend, so I’d love to be able to make a few dishes that not only save money, but are also much healthier than getting them from a takeaway. I really want to make this Vegetable Curry soon, and I really love Thai food so I’d like to try to cook this Veggie Thai Red curry with tofu too.
- Trying to walk more – 30 minutes a day (or 10,000 steps) is recommended. Try walking a bit more rather than driving or taking the bus – it saves you money, but you’re also getting in a bit of exercise into your day. I know it’s not possible to walk everywhere, but you can walk to the shop round the corner sometimes rather than jumping in the car. I need to do this more.
- Don’t buy costly fitness DVDs or feel like you have to join a gym. Use YouTube videos for exercises. I think this is a great tip – since I started exercising properly I have used FitnessBlender videos on YouTube or their website and I actually think they are way better than fitness DVD’s that you can buy. You don’t get bored listening to the same spiel in video every time you exercise, and you can search for the type and length of exercise that you want. There are tons of great trainers on YouTube now, and their workouts are completely free! If you don’t have weights then you can use stuff around your home to work out with, like bottles of water or tins of beans.
I hope some of these tips have inspired you to try and be a bit healthier in 2017, and save some money at the same time! You can find out more information here.
Let me know in the comments if you have any more tips for how to be healthy on a budget.
This is a collaborative post.