Tips to Eat Healthy, Save Money & Get In Shape

I’m always looking for ways to eat healthier without spending too much money. Thanks to Lifehacker I was able to come across the following article to save money on food without cutting out the nutrients. By eating many small meals you can also speed up your metabolism to shed any pounds you are hoping to.

The article originates from Little People Wealth, a website I occasionally visit for bargains and online coupon codes. Here are the tips to eat healthy, spend about $5.00 a week & also get in shape:

1. Eat smaller meals and increase meal frequency.

6 small meals a day rather than 3 large ones will increase your metabolism, helping with weight loss. The good part about this is that most of these small meals should include raw fruits and vegetables, which tend to cost the least of any food group in the grocery store. Eating raw fruits and vegetables is like giving your digestive system a workout, which increases its functionality, also helping in weight loss.

2. Combine simple ingredients.

Celery with peanut butter and raisins, or frogs on a log, is one of the healthiest, easiest, and cheapest complete meals to make (not to mention those flavors happen to go quite well together; frogs on a log is quite tasty). Fruit smoothies are also one of the cheapest forms of healthy, tasty eating around. Buying a fruit blender will pay for itself in spades, not to mention saving you trips to those overpriced smoothie and coffee joints.

3. Buy meats raw and fresh and combine them with cheap bases and raw vegetables to form excellent soups.

Complete meals come quite cheaply in soups, if you are willing to mix the ingredients yourself. Great bases include water, egg, and tomato puree. Though meat is relatively expensive, if you want it, you can divvy it up among the week so that the daily cost is quite low. Meats are quite unhealthy in the quantity in which we eat them. Try smaller portions.

4. Buy in season and buy local.
Often you pay for the shipping costs of certain items without even knowing it. Regular trips to the farmer’s market can remedy that problem. Also, buying in season is basic economics — more supply equals lower cost. If you buy out of season, there are less of that item to be had, so people will feel justified in charging you more. Buy fruits in season and freeze them for later.

5. Hunt the coupon sections.

This goes without saying, but those annoying leaflets that your mailbox gets spammed with sometimes have some great deals. Be prepared to show the cashier, as many times they are not even aware of half the deals that are being offered.

Cutting the Cost of Cold

During the winter it’s hard to be happy about the cost of the heating bill. Each year I tend to try and deny I live in Minnesota where it’s winter from November – March. Granted this past fall was beautiful and we had warm weather into the month of November, the snow came hard and heavy and now the cold is here to stay for awhile.

Leading up to Christmas I understand it’s going to be cold. Between Christmas baking, gifts & travels I know I’ll be spending money throughout the month. For some reason once the New Year hits and the weather is still cold the idea of paying a good amount to heat the house is no longer appealing.

This past year I’ve really attempted to “go green” and save on energy and costs where I can. Over the past month I’ve really tried to continue with this by developing some routines to keep me warm but the thermostat down. Here are a few simple tips to stay warm during the final winter months that hopefully also result in a lower heating bill.Please keep in mind I do all of the following because otherwise I’d probably be cold if I only did one!

1. Turn down the heat. I’ve found that even turning down the thermostat a few degrees, whether it’s before you head out the door for work, or during the evening will cut down on cost. During the day I keep the house around 60 degrees. When I arrive home I turn it up to about 62 or 64 depending on my mood. For sure before bed I turn it up to 64.

2. Layers. Whether it’s layers of clothes or the number of blankets on your bed it makes a difference. In bed I have several layers, varrying from a sheet to a wool blanket. I also have a fleece blanket, an afgan and a sleeping bag. This allows me to sleep comfortably and not have to keep the heat up during the over night hours.

3. Rice isn’t just for cooking! Taking the tip from one of my husband’s college roomates, I filled an old sock with rice. Before heading to bed I put the sock in the microwave for about 30 seconds. I place the sock by my feet to warm up my bed and keep my feet warm as I fall asleep

4. Warm up a room, not a house. By turning on a space heater in the room you generally spend the most time it you allow the rest of your house to stay cooler. I generally spend time on the computer or in the living room. I close the door to allow the entire room to be heated. So, not only am I cozy on the couch I know I’m not heating rooms more than needed that I’m not in.

5. Get out. Try to find activities or things you can do outside your house or with friends that allows you to not spend as much time at home. Whether you go away for the weekend (and turn the thermostat down during that time) or at least spend a few more hours a week working out at a gym, hanging out at Barnes & Noble or check out the library, you can cut the cost of heating the house for a few more hours a week .