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How to stay healthy on a budget

These days, it seems like a new wellness trend is popping up every week. Magazines, bloggers and celebrities seem to regularly tout the benefits of pricey superfoods, expensive supplements and treatments that cost an arm and a leg. The truth is that being healthy doesn’t need to cost a fortune.

Here are a few ways to stay healthy on a budget:

Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables

Many people spend a fortune on expensive supplements or programs, without meeting the daily recommended servings of fruit and vegetables. Ensuring that you have a diet that’s packed with nutrient-dense whole foods is a great way to make sure your body is getting all the vitamins and minerals it needs to function correctly. As a minimum aim to eat five serves of vegetables and two serves of fruit daily. And buy produce in season to save even more.

Buy frozen produce

Not everyone can afford to purchase fresh organic produce; what’s important is making sure that you’re consuming a variety of different fruit and vegetables. Whether they are fresh or frozen is entirely dependent on your preference and budget. There’s nothing wrong with having a good supply of frozen fruit and veggies on hand to fortify your diet with nutrients. In fact, they can be just as nutritious as fresh - if not more so, as they are often quickly frozen after being picked, so they retain their nutrients.

Keep an eye out for bargains

One way to save money on fruit and vegetables is to keep an eye out for discounted produce. One way to do this is to visit your local markets at the end of the day when sellers will often reduce the cost of their products to ensure that they are sold by the close of business.

Another option is to purchase ‘ugly’ produce. These misshapen fruits and vegetables aren’t considered ‘market worthy’ and are therefore sold at a lower price. Despite their appearance, they are equally nutritious as regular produce. Not only will your wallet thank you, but so will the planet, as you’re preventing unnecessary food waste.

Get your fitness for free

You don’t need an expensive gym membership to stay fit. Walking, running, hiking, swimming and bodyweight training are all free or low-cost ways to move your body and keep healthy. Not only does regular exercise help to maintain a healthy weight, but it’s also excellent for your heart, immunity and total wellbeing. Plus, by exercising outdoors, you’re exposing your skin to sunshine, allowing your body to boost its Vitamin D. Just be careful which time of day you do your exercise outdoors! Try to get at least thirty minutes of activity every day to stay healthy and well.

There are also lots of different ways to move your body from the comfort of your home, including workout videos, yoga, dance and plenty more. Check out our tips on at home exercises to get you moving for some ideas.

Get enough sleep

When it comes to health and wellness, the importance of sleep can’t be overstated. Getting enough sleep can help us to think clearly, maintain healthy body weight, increase our ability to fight off infection and disease, manage our stress levels, and much, much more. This incredibly valuable resource is readily available to us all and doesn’t cost a cent, so make sure you’re getting eight hours of sleep per night to stay healthy. If you find it challenging to get to or stay asleep, be sure to check out our tips for a better night’s sleep.

Relax and recover

Chronic stress wreaks havoc on our body, causing an array of different problems for our physical and mental health. Keeping stress levels to a minimal or at least manageable level will do wonders for your health. You don’t need to invest in massages or expensive treatments to keep stress at bay. There are lots of ways to manage stress that are low cost or completely free. Deep breathing exercises, meditation, journaling, reading, spending quality time with family and having a laugh are all activities that can help to reduce stress and help to keep you happy and healthy.

Switch to generic brands

Many products are available as generic brands. Everything from pasta to skincare products is usually available at a lower price under a generic brand - so shop around to make sure you’re getting quality products at an excellent price. Even medicines, both prescription and over-the-counter are available at a lower cost under a generic brand. If you’re in doubt or unsure, speak to your local Capital Chemist pharmacist.

You may also be interested in the following:

5 healthy recipes for the whole family
A smoothie bowl recipe for healthy skin