New year healthy living on a budget

New Year Healthy Living on a Budget

  • Jd Harris
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One of the most popular ways to improve your health with clean eating and exercise is to follow the Paleo diet, but it can work out to be quite expensive. So how does the family on a budget eat healthily?

The key point of the Paleo diet is to eat like cavemen in order to stay healthy and disease free. It also requires movement and exercise as our ancestors would have been far more active than we are today with our sedentary lives, trapped behind a computer screen for hours on end. You don’t have to go full Paleo to reap some of the benefits of this fad diet, and you can apply some of the concepts and stick to your budget!

Eat local, eat seasonal

The best fruits and vegetables to eat are those that are in season and grown locally, and usually they are the ones at the best prices in the fresh food section of your local grocery. Rather than filling your trolley with ready-made meals or processed foods, choose more vegetables and fruits. See if you can get eighty percent of the food in your trolley from the fresh food section. Choose a range of colours and types: green leafy vegetables, root vegetables, seasonal fruit, and legumes. This kind of eating is also a very good way to control pre-diabetes. Not only will eating this be good for your waistline, but it will be a natural way of getting a range of vitamins and minerals in your diet!

Try new proteins

Paleo diets are not protein heavy, like some believe. However, they do require high-quality fresh protein alongside healthy vegetables, which does not mean eating loads of sausage rolls but using meat creatively and wisely. Certain cuts of meat are far cheaper than others, while providing all the nutrients you need, including healthy fats. Chicken thighs can be bought cheaply, and are a great addition to a meal of roasted fresh food. Try new meals from other countries that utilise cuts of meat you might normally not consider. Chicken liver piri piri from Mozambique or pork trotters in a traditional Zimbabwean recipe. Think creatively and you’ll be surprised just how much you can do with cuts of meat you might previously have ignored.

Have fun on the run

Healthy eating is only one aspect of a healthy life, to have that lean, muscular body, we need to do some exercise. This doesn’t mean taking out a costly gym membership because of a New Year’s resolution, but incorporating exercise into your life in a fun and natural way. There are a whole range of body weight exercises that you can do at home without any extra expensive equipment. Many free smartphone apps exist that will train and encourage you to begin an exercise routine such as doing push-ups or building you up to run 3 miles. You’re more likely to do exercise if you enjoy it, so take up something you’ve always wanted to do and get fit without resenting your exercise.

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