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Save Money, Become Healthy!

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How to save money and become fit and healthy! What many people don’t realize is that they can save lots of money on a yearly basis by adjusting their lifestyle or changing their product choices. As an online personal trainer, nurse and nutritionist I figured it was a good idea to show you some easy to apply, money saving tips.

#1 Home VS Big Brands

Don’t buy big brands, but rather stick with home brands. A banana is a banana. Most foods come from the same producer with only some minor differences that can bring up the price a lot more. There are products that you shouldn’t try to save money on such as good quality furniture that lasts a lot of years opposed to cheap chairs that fall apart after using them for a couple of years. However, foods are eaten and literally turned into poop. Why spend so much extra money on a brand product than on regular foods? Most of the time, the home brands have better or equal nutritional values too. Usually it’s just a matter of getting used to the cheaper home brand, because lots of people complain they don’t like it as much as the big brands. Taste can change in a very short amount of time, so don’t let taste be the main factor for you to buy a food from an expensive brand.

Yes, organic foods are usually more expensive than other brands, but you don’t necessarily pay for a much healthier food. I say ‘much’, because I do think organic food always has a slightly better health outcome than non-organic foods. You can save up to half the costs when you stick to home brands instead of big name brands. I think it’s safe to estimate that you’ll save approximately $20 a month applying this tip. That already is $240 a year. It may not seem a lot, but combined with the following money saving tips you’ll get a great vacation out of it.




 

#2 Bottled water

Drinking water generally can be considered a money saving tip if you drink it instead of soda or other flavored drinks. However, not if you buy bottled water. If your drinking water is bad, buy a filter so you can still drink tap water safely and get yourself some kind of bottle that you can use to refill endlessly. Besides being way cheaper, it’s way better for the environment. It’s an absolute waste to buy bottled water as making the bottles themselves requires way more water than is actually in the bottle. Don’t even refill a plastic bottle; just buy a decent long lasting bottle that you can refill endlessly. I tend to avoid using plastic products as much as possible due to negative side effects using certain kinds of plastic. It’s known to increase your estrogen levels, which is bad for both men and women.

There are tons of awesome, good quality water bottles that can last a lifetime! Invest $15-30 dollars for a good product and never pay money again for your drinks. According to www.treehugger.com you can save up to $1400 when you replace bottled water with tap water. My own calculations (with the amount of water I drink) came down to saving 675 euro a year. That is with using home brand bottled water with a discount on it though. If I choose a popular brand it would cost me 963 euros a year. That’s insane.

#3 NO supplements

I am not known for my support of supplements. In contrary, I hate the supplement industry. I have had so many offers from supplement companies that I could have made a fortune for myself promoting their nonsense products. Instead I rather lobby against their scams.

The use of supplements is pointless by itself, but you must understand it costs you lots of money too. Supplements are not a necessity. Very few supplements are proven effective and many have not been researched properly. Besides, they give you only a minimal edge, not worth the money if you don’t have a lot to go by to start with. It’s not uncommon for people to spend well over $30 on supplements every month. That’s $360 on a year basis. You may think that’s not a lot, but it actually is for something that doesn’t do you any good. Buy some extra food to get your protein and vitamins instead. Vegans like myself may need vitamin B12 supplements. That’s different as in this case it is a necessity. B12 supplements are very cheap though, so that shouldn’t be a problem.




 

 

#4 Weight loss products

Losing weight should not cost you more money, but rather it should cost you less money. You have to eat less than you did before, hence you shouldn’t be paying more money now, should you? Weight loss products are total scams! With many of them comes the warning: this product only works when you have an optimal diet and work out regularly. So do you lose weight by using the product or because of the lifestyle change? I can’t understand why people fall for these stupid scams, but oh well. The only weight you’ll lose is weight from your wallet by paying for this nonsense.

This is a difficult estimate to make because it really depends on what products we are talking about. Whether it is some stupid ab workout machine or weight loss bars, all of these products are heavily overpriced. Let’s say you pay 100-200 dollars on this on a yearly basis as a minimal average. Of course not everyone falls for this, but I’m pretty sure we have all fell for a scam like this in our lives. Some people keep making the same mistakes and fail to realize that the only way to lose fat is to burn more calories than you eat. It’s so simple, but it’s not what most people want to hear.

 

#5 Buying Superfoods

The term superfoods is a marketing technique as science doesn’t really support this concept. If you have the money for it then all these fancy exotic superfoods can have a place in your nutrition plan, but if not, don’t feel sorry for not eating ‘healthy’.  The healthiest foods are still the cheapest, such as rice, beans, brocolli, carrots, potatoes. Buy seasonal fruits and vegetables to safe some extra money. Rather buy organic and or local foods if possible, but otherwise stick to regular healthy food. Organic and local food isn’t necessarily much healthier than non-organic foods, but you do miss out on all the chemicals used to combat bugs, which is always good. It’s also way better for the environment.

Don’t buy the stupid myths about how bad potatoes or bread are either. They are not bad! They are healthy as long as you buy the whole grain versions of bread for example. Carbs are NOT bad! The stupid low carb craze has to stop. Superfoods are crazy expensive. Safe well over $200 by not falling for the expensive Superfood myth.

 

#6 Gym memberships

One of the biggest money wastes on this list is gym memberships. This is not the case for all people though, keep that in mind. Some benefit from it as they make use of things you won’t be able to get in your cheap home gym. I’m mostly talking about people who drive their cars to the gym to run on a treadmill. Seriously, how dumb can you be? Run to the gym instead and immediately run back with all your money in your pocket. Whether you waste money or not also depends on how often you visit the gym. I hear people pay $30 memberships and only go to the gym 2 hours a week to do some basic exercises you can do easily at home. Gyms make massive amounts of money from inactive members who are too lazy to give up their memberships.

Even if you only pay $20 a month for a gym membership, which is about the minimum you’ll find, you still pay $240 a year. Now how much of the gym do you really use? Some may use a lot of machines that are insanely expensive and use lots of weight, but if you’re just looking to get fit and slim, you won’t need all that much. My gym costs about $500. I have used most of my equipment for over 5 years now and it’s still doing its job. I did buy a lot of equipment that is not really necessary to have though, but that I enjoy using (such as an EZ curl bar, gymnastic rings, an extra set of dumbbell bars). If you only buy the bare essentials to get in good shape, which are a set of adjustable dumbbells and a pull up bar you can get away with less than $60. Working out outside using pull up bars and everything you find in there doesn’t even cost a single dollar. Money saved when you give up your gym membership is a bare minimum of $240 going up to $600 on a yearly basis.




What’s the damage?

Here is the total damage of all these money wasting tips.

 

Brands $240

Bottled water $1000-1400

Supplements $360

Weight loss products $100-200

Superfoods $200

Gym memberships $240-600

 

Total savings:

$2140-3000

 

I sure can think of better things to invest that kind of money in and I am sure you can too!

Sources:

http://www.treehugger.com/clean-water/save-1400-a-year-by-drinking-tap-water.html

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/6-ways-to-beat-pricey-gym-memberships-2014-03-21

 

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