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8 affordable healthy habits that will enrich your life

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Healthy Habits

Making some small changes towards your new healthy lifestyle needn't cost the earth. Find out how to get started with our 8 affordable healthy habits...

We’re often so caught up in this rat race called life that we forget it’s not always only about money. The famous Roman poet Virgil noted already over 2,000 years ago that the “greatest wealth is health.” You don’t necessarily need loads of money to live a healthy life. But money can contribute to a healthier lifestyle through organic foods, health checks and less stress about finances. This article is about habits for a healthy body and mind that you can adopt right now. Some are free, some are modestly priced, and others might even save you money.

1. Jog and exercising at home

If you already have trainers, you are well on your way. Jogging itself doesn’t cost anything except sweat, time and effort. On the other hand, the rewards are well worth it. Studies have shown that jogging can add years to your life. It’s beneficial to your immune system, as well as your circulatory system. Jogging is also energising and mood-lifting.

Also, people mistakenly think that they need to go to the gym to get fit or bulk up. Push-ups, pull-ups, lunges and jumping jacks are just a couple of ways to exercise at home without any extra equipment. Buy yourself a set of dumbbells or a kettlebell and see even more benefits from home strength-training

2. Get good night’s sleep

It’s a well-known fact that sleeping enough is essential to living a healthy life and your body and mind need time to recharge. Did you know that some studies have found that sleep deprivation can impact everything from your heart, to your circulation – and even your mental performance.

Like for children, adults can benefit from sticking to a set sleeping schedule where you aim to go to bed around the same time each night. Most experts recommend around 7 to 9 hours of sleep for adults, and more for children and teenagers. When bedtime approaches, turn off the tv and put down your phone to let the body start to wind-down for the night.

3. Eat healthy foods

You don’t have to spend lots of money on organic, GMO-free foods to have a proper nutrition. But nutritional guidelines are placing more and more emphasis on regular consumption of fruits and vegetables. Actually, cooking with frozen vegetables can have similar benefits to fresh ones.

Also, don’t forget about protein, and other minerals and vitamins whether you are a meat-eater, vegetarian or vegan. Take an extra moment to read the nutritional information about food you buy and try to set at least some time each week to cook home meals.

4. Limit junk food

As the name implies, junk food is probably not the best nutritional choice. However, it can be convenient and not necessarily that easy to spot. These are full of “goodies” like fats, sugars and salts, which give the taste a boost. No wonder they can be addictive and contribute to overeating.

The best policy is to try to limit fast foods, sweets, chips and soft drinks. A treat occasionally is OK but try to reach for a glass of water or an apple whenever you can. Usually a piece of fruit is cheaper than a candy bar after all.

5. Avoid smoking

There are so many reasons to quit smoking, yet so many people do it and it can be deadly. Smoking kills millions of people every year and it’s the leading cause for lung cancer, mouth cancer and contributes to dozens of other health problems.

If you haven’t already, it’s not too late to kick the habit. There are good resources online to help in your journey and don’t hesitate to reach out to your doctor for advice. You’ll see the health and beauty benefits right away and your wallet will thank you – you'll save hundreds to thousands a year.

6. Read books

Knowledge is power and reading is the best way to gain it. Still, the benefits go beyond that. Reading fiction develops imagination, empathy, as well as critical and analytical thinking. Many studies show that reading can also alleviate depression, reduce stress and even lower the chances of Alzheimer’s disease.

A new book can come with a new price tag, but there are other options like second-hand bookstores for cheaper books, even the classics. Reading books is perhaps the cheapest and most effective way to get inspired, mentally and even spiritually.

7. Practice meditation

Trying not to think about anything is a lot more difficult than it sounds. The process of redirecting your thoughts is like going to the gym and exercising your “focus muscle”. It’s more than that, in time you’ll come to know yourself better by being more aware of your own thoughts. Why not start now? You can start practicing meditation any time – just find a quiet place and breathe.

8. Take in some sunlight

Sunlight aids the production of vitamin D, an essential ingredient for overall health and processing of other nutrients for the body. Furthermore, sunlight helps regulate serotonin levels, thus having a positive effect on mood. Just remember to keep sun exposure in check – for hot days, stay hydrated and make sure protect yourself from too much sun with sunscreen, hats and sunglasses.

Hopefully, you were inspired by some of these affordable healthy habits. Let’s get healthier – starting today!

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Warning: Late repayment can cause you serious money problems. For help, go to moneyadviceservice.org.uk. Representative example: APR 1270% if borrowing £400 for 4 months. Interest rate: 292% p.a. (fixed). Total amount repayable: £665.48 by four instalments of £166.37. Maximum representative APR: 1604% if full loan repaid after 7 days.