Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Living a Healthy Lifestyle on a Budget


Health and wellness is a privilege that everyone should be able to afford even in difficult economic times. With the right experience and know-how, anyone can make smart choices about healthy living while also being wallet wise.

Dr. Jennifer Trachtenberg has mastered the art of staying fit, while also being financially responsible. She is a busy mom of three, runs a private practice in New York City and serves as chief pediatric officer for RealAge.com – an informative Web site that helps people live healthier, longer lives. Through her extensive experience of balancing work, life and wellness, she has learned how to keep living a healthy lifestyle, while keeping out of the red.

Dr. Trachtenberg shares her top five tips for staying healthy on a budget:

Tip 1 – Buy Frozen for Good Nutrition
The fresh produce section at the grocery store can be a budgeter’s nightmare as pricey fresh foods can really add up. The budget-conscious can find much needed relief in the frozen food section. Frozen fruits and vegetables typically have the same levels of nutrients as their fresh counterparts, because the produce is frozen at the peak of its ripeness, locking in the maximum amount of nutrients .

Tip 2 – Get Fit in the Great Outdoors
No matter what the season, the outdoors is a great place to move your body and bond with family and friends without the confinement and encumbering expense of a gym membership. Calorie-shedding activities can be enjoyed year round:

* Winter – Ice skate at a local rink or work the biceps with some snow shoveling

* Spring – Get some friends together and form a softball league, or ride a bike on weekends

* Summer – Try to walk instead of driving short distances or take up swimming

* Fall – Get some cardio by raking leaves or challenge yourself to participate in a local road race

On rainy or chilly days, visit the local library and check out a workout video. It can be a lot of fun and doesn’t cost a thing.

Tip 3 – Let the games begin!
Lately, board games are making a major comeback with the reinvention of the traditional Family Night. Flexing your mental muscle by opting to play cards, trivia games or parlor games of yesteryear can help cut costs on expensive movie rentals and excessive cable charges. Plus, leisure time spent with friends, family and neighbors is always a healthy and fun way to de-stress.

Tip 4 – Drink to your health!
Water is a necessity and getting the recommended eight glasses a day is important to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Switching from bottled water to tap can save hundreds of dollars (not to mention it also eliminates the amount of plastic bottles that get discarded!). To ensure tap water is healthy and clean, consider a PUR Water Filtration System, which could save up to $600 each year in comparison to bottled water. PUR is certified to reduce many unwanted contaminants to help ensure drinking water is clean and healthy. Visit www.purwater.com for more details.

Tip 5 – Sweet Dreams
Getting much needed sleep no matter what your age is crucial to mental, emotional and physical health. You will feel better, be more productive at work, have increased levels of physical and mental alertness, and your body will get the rest it needs to fight off diseases. For these reasons, make a commitment to schedule your day so you get the recommended seven to eight hours of sleep. Children, depending on age, might require more.

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