Category: Frugal Living Tips

Why Diet and Exercise Are The Keys to The Healthy Life

the healthy lifeThe keys to a healthy life are available to everyone, although they don’t always appear in the same way.

This is because there is a whole world of resources available to change your life for the better. Everyone’s body and mind works differently, which means defining the healthy life for you will likely be unique from what works for someone else.

However, there are a few basic principles to remember when beginning your fitness journey.

Here are three rules to live by when taking the steps to a healthier life.

1. Your Diet Is Your Fuel

Our bodies work like machines, and they need the proper fuel to perform their best.

Looking at food as fuel means understanding more than carbs, fats, and protein. You have to be aware of the nutrients and added benefits some foods can have. Beyond energy levels, the food you eat every day has a significant impact on your mood, memory, and more.

As such, it works better to focus on improving your eating habits rather than dieting for a temporary amount of time. Habits are more permanent. They can open new doors to the healthy life without feeling restricted to a set plan.

However, diets are a great way to start exploring these new habits. They get you excited to try new foods and eating styles while educating you on what works best for your body.

Over time, you become more mindful of how you feel throughout the day as a result of the food you intake.

2. Exercise Goes Beyond Physical Benefits

Speaking of being more mindful, you will likely see a boost in productivity, positivity, and focus as a result of regular exercise.

This is because an increased level of movement to burn calories also increases the level of blood and oxygen reaching your brain.

If you aren’t sure which form of exercise is right for you, the best advice to take is don’t be afraid to find out. Remember, exercise can be anything from walking for an hour a day to swimming, yoga, lifting weights, or biking.

To discover your go-to movement, take it one step at a time. Go to a yoga class or sign up for a week of training at a gym. Maybe even check out a roadmaster bike review, get yourself a pair of wheels and hit the trails!

3. Combining Your Efforts Boosts Performance

No matter if you start your journey to the healthy life with better eating habits or more movement in your body, you have to combine these efforts.

Think about it this way – without a healthy diet, you may just be wasting your time at the gym. Similarly, eating well will only take you weight-loss journey so far without some added physical activity.

For the best results, work as hard in the gym as you do in the kitchen and grocery aisle.

This will transform your body from the inside out. You will feel the differences as you look in the mirror and take note of your energy throughout the day.

Live the Healthy Life You Deserve

Ready to begin making better health choices?

Clean out the kitchen and start fresh with delicious eating options your body will love.

Get a jump on your new, healthy life with one of our quick and easy Weight Watchers recipes here.

The Energy Saving Solutions That Save You Money

energy saving solutionsWant to cut a few bucks off your utility bills?

Who doesn’t?

In 2012, over $3,000 was spent per person on energy in the US alone. So there’s obviously some room for improvement.

But how exactly do you cut back on your energy spending?

The good news is, it’s not as hard as you think. There are a few simple steps you can take right now to save you and your family some serious dough each month.

Read on to find out!

Heat and Cool Your Home the Smart Way

When most people think about saving money on energy costs, heating and cooling are probably the first things that come to mind. After all, these costs are a big chunk of your bill.

But you don’t need to move into a geothermal home to save money on heating and cooling. You can save money today by doing things like:

  • Using ceiling or floor fans to help out your AC in the summer
  • Getting a programmable thermostat and turning the temperature up or down (depending on the season) when you’re sleeping or away from the house
  • Replacing air filters for your heating or cooling system more often, so they’re running more efficiently.

Replace Those Old Light Bulbs

Did you know that CFL or LED light bulbs use anywhere from 25-80% less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs?

They also last a whopping 3-25 times longer than traditional light bulbs.

While the initial cost is a little higher, switching to energy efficient bulbs could save your family a healthy chunk on electricity every month.

Keep Your Home Sealed Up Tight

If you’ve ever stood near a single pane window in an older home on a cold day, you know how much energy windows can cost you every month.

While replacing all your windows is probably not an expense you want to take on lightly, you can do your monthly budget a lot of good by ensuring your windows are properly sealed.

Over time the caulking around the exterior of windows tends to dry and crack, allowing heat or cold to flow into your home. This can be prevented by checking and caulking around the exterior of your windows annually.

Be Smart With Your Electronics and Appliances

After heating and cooling, your large appliances and electronics account for the biggest chunk of your family’s energy bills. While one solution is to use them less, sometimes you’ve got to do that extra load of laundry.

Using modern, energy efficient appliances is a big help here, along with being smart and waiting to do that load of laundry or dishes until you’ve got a full load.

Some other ways to save on electricity with your electronics are:

  • Turning off electronics — like TVs or computers — that are not in use
  • Unplug phone or other chargers that are not in use. These can still draw electricity even if they aren’t charging anything

For help with more energy saving solutions, click here.

What Energy Saving Solutions Are You Using?

These energy saving tips are just the beginning. The truth is, there are tons of little thing you could be doing every day to save your family money on energy.

What are your favorite energy saving solutions? Leave them in the comments below!

5 Tips to Keep a Clean and Tidy House On a Budget

tidy houseKeeping a clean and tidy house can seem like a daunting, and expensive, task. We’ve all seen how shiny those homes are in magazines, right? Everything’s crisp, fresh, organized, and there’s nary a crumb in sight!

You don’t have to hire a troupe of maids to keep your home spotless, however. Here are 5 tips that will help you keep your house sparkling and tidy, without breaking your budget.

Do It Every Day

While you don’t need to suit up and scrub down your entire house from top to bottom every day, doing some tidying and cleaning daily can help keep things nice. This is especially true if you have children or pets.

Wiping down hard surfaces quickly, picking up stray toys and clothes, spot dusting, and doing a light sweep of hard floors daily is a great way to keep your home tidy and neat. Depending on the size of your home, it probably will only take you 45 minutes to an hour, max, and then your home is refreshed and ready for the day.

Not only will doing the smaller things daily help you save time, but it will also make your deep cleaning tasks easier. This also saves you money; when your tasks are easier, you’re not using as many cleaning items or products! You’re also not spending more money on products designed to tackle hard or nasty messes.

Go Natural

Considering using natural products for your daily cleaning tasks can go a long way towards helping your budget. They are often multipurpose, less expensive, and take up less space in your cleaning cabinet. Not only will that help make keeping a tidy house easier, but you also have fewer chemicals to worry about.

Baking soda, for example, makes an excellent scouring paste for gritty jobs. It also has great odor-absorbing properties, making it perfect for freshening your carpet.

Vinegar also makes a fantastic multipurpose cleaner. It’s streak-free, so it’s perfect for cleaning windows and metal surfaces you’d like to shine!

Don’t Skip The Professionals

There are times when you’ll want to have professionals do some of the cleaning in your home, such as carpet and upholstery cleaning. While it’s fine to do spot cleaning yourself, every so often you’ll want to have it done by the experts.

They can get the deep-down dirt that home cleaners can miss, refreshing and extending the life of your carpets or furniture. If you’re worried about price, consider going with a locally-owned business such as Raleigh Carpet Cleaning Pros.

Re-Use

Disposable cleaning products may make your life easier, but they’re also more expensive in the long run. Consider getting items that you can wash and re-use easily, such as microfiber dusting cloths and mops.

You can also re-purpose items around your home. Used dryer sheets can make good dusters, and old t-shirts and clothes can make good cleaning rags. They’re washable, and you can always throw them away if it’s a nasty project.

Don’t Forget Sales And Coupons

Sales are a great time to stock up on cleaning and organizational supplies. If you need to replace your vacuum, consider doing it in April. Memorial Day sales are also a great time to pick up big-ticket items for cheap.

Back-to-school is a great time to stock up on your organizational essentials. With everything marked down for getting dorms ready, you can get some real steals.

For times when you find you’re out of something and need it now, don’t forget to check and see if you can find any coupons. There’s almost always something for cleaning supplies if you look!

How Do You Keep A Tidy House?

This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to ways to keep your house clean and tidy on a budget. We’d love to hear some of your top favorites! Leave them in the comments below, join in on our Facebook page, or drop me a line!

5 Natural Health Supplements to Help You Get Healthy

natural health supplementsIt’s nearly impossible to get all the nutrients your body needs from the average American diet.

A lot of people turn to natural supplements to give their body what it needs. Before you roll your eyes, natural health supplements are way more than just little pills.

Supplements actually defend your body from multiple diseases while increasing your body’s natural strength and health.

Check out this list of five natural health supplements.

1. Krill Oil

Krill oil contains a fatty acid called omega-3, but most people trying to increase their omega-3 intake normally use fish oil instead.

Krill oil is better.

Krill oil is the purest form of omega-3 out there. Because krills don’t feed on other fish, the oil doesn’t have any of the mercury or other toxins found in fish oil.

Not to mention it doesn’t have that gross fishy aftertaste.

Krill oil is one of the best natural health supplements for your body. This oil helps prevent heart disease, strokes, and arthritis. It lowers inflammation, has anti-depressive effects, and can even improve neurological development in newborns.

Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary for optimum health, and because your body doesn’t naturally produce them, krill oil is the best way to get them.

2. Avocado Oil

You already know avocado is a super food, but the real power of this fruit is in the oil.

Avocado oil contains a lot of oleic acids, which benefits all different parts of the body. It helps prevent cancer, heart disease, and auto-immune disease, and it even speeds up the bodies healing process.

This oil also keeps your skin healthy and strong and lets your hair grow faster and fuller. Perhaps the best yet, when paired with a good diet and proper exercise, avocado oil also helps your body lose weight!

3. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is another great supplement choice because it improves memory and brain function, even serving as a natural treatment for Alzheimer’s Disease.

It’s full of fats called medium-chain fatty acids, which are easy to digest and give the body energy. They also protect your body against heart disease, high blood pressure, some cancers, gum disease, and many other illnesses.

Coconut oil is also easy to take because you don’t have to swallow it in pill form. You can instead put Nuton MCT Oil (natural, liquid coconut oil) into your everyday drinks like coffee and protein shakes.

Its neutral taste won’t overpower your favorite flavors.

4. Flaxseed Oil

A lot of natural health supplements include traces of flaxseed oil, but to get the best flaxseed benefits, you should look for a pure flaxseed oil.

This oil contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, and these acids lower cholesterol, protect against heart disease, fight lupus and inflammation, and helps prevent gallstones.

If you like long nails, you should consider including this supplement into your everyday diet because it encourages the growth of strong nails. It also keeps your hair healthy!

5. Essential Oils

Essential oils are organic oils extracted from plants, and they have tremendous healing properties.

Some of the most common essential oils are made from lavender flowers, lemons, mint, and frankincense. Adding just these few essential oils can help you recover from colds quickly, relax your body, alleviate sore muscles, and reduce wrinkles and other skin conditions.

Essential oils also have strong smells, which help put your mind at ease. It only takes a few drops of these oils to help your body feel better.

Be Smart About Natural Health Supplements

Supplements can benefit both your mind and body, but make sure you do your research before you take any. You should always check with your doctor to make sure your preferred supplement will work for you.

Remember, every supplement works best when paired with a healthy lifestyle, so check out some other ways to stay healthy!

5 Healthy Living Products You Need to Try

healthy living productsAre you trying to live a healthier life?

If the answer is yes, then you’re definitely not alone. Wellness foods and other products are on the rise in 2017 and show no signs of losing popularity anytime soon.

As with any trend, many companies try to jump on the bandwagon. It can be difficult to find products that are truly good for your health and know which ones aren’t worth your time.

To make it easy, we’ve created this short guide to 5 products that have proven health benefits. Here are some healthy living products to add to your diet right away:

1. Coconut Oil

You’ve probably heard all the hype about coconut oil and there’s a good reason everyone is obsessed. Coconut oil offers many different vitamins and minerals, but it won’t just improve your health on the inside.

Coconut oil also has benefits when used externally too. It makes a great natural moisturizer, hair conditioner, makeup remover and more.

Swapping out coconut oil for some of your chemical-ridden beauty products is an easy way to live more healthfully.

2. Maca Powder

Maca powder might be the most exotic on the list, but it’s been proven to be beneficial to overall health. Maca is high in vitamin C, as well as copper, iron, and other essential minerals that are hard to get in the typical diet.

Not all maca powder is created equally. It’s important to choose a high-quality, all-natural supplement, such as Isula Nature maca tablets and powder, to get all the benefits that maca has to offer.

3. Omega-3 Supplements

Omega-3 supplements are essential to many functions of the body. They’ve been proven to help with many different conditions such as anxiety and heart disease, and helping to support a healthy pregnancy.

One concern many people have with omega-3 is the taste. Omega-3s often come from fish, which makes fish pills a popular choice for those seeking the vital nutrient.

We suggest trying a gummy vitamin or liquid form of omega-3, as this can often eliminate a ‘fishy’ taste.

4. Green Tea

Green tea is a healthier way to get your caffeine boost in the morning. It’s loaded with crucial antioxidants as well as vitamins and minerals.

Most of us have heard green tea is beneficial, but still, most don’t want to switch over from their classic cup of coffee. To make it a little easier, try adding green tea into your everyday meals. It goes great mixed with a fruit juice or in a smoothie.

5. Nuts

One of the healthiest snacks you can eat is something you probably see in the grocery store all the time. Nuts are full of healthy fats and protein which make them of the healthiest snacks you can reach for.

To get the most health benefits, try to select raw ruts. Many nuts are covered in a salty outer layer, but remember that excess salt consumption can be bad for you.

Living a healthier lifestyle doesn’t have to be complicated. For best results, add these five items into your diet and you’re almost guaranteed to feel a little better.

Do you have other go-to items to be healthier? Share them in the comments below.

5 Rejuvenating Wellness Activities You Deserve to Try

change your mindsetHave the stresses of daily work and home life been weighing on you recently?

Did you know stress can affect numerous aspects of your health, both physical and mental?

While stress and its side effects can seem never-ending and exhausting, there are some simple lifestyle tweaks that can help you manage stress-related symptoms.

Here are five rejuvenating wellness activities that you can try to alleviate stress in your life.

1. Watch What You Eat

While dieting can seem overwhelming on a list of wellness activities, you don’t have to jump into a rigorous regimen to reap the benefits.

Start with simple diet goals. For example, you could try to cut back on foods that irritate your digestive system.

If you’re a breakfast person, try including berries which often contain high levels of vitamins and antioxidants.

Green vegetables such as spinach or broccoli are another source of healthy foods that you can include in your wellness diet.

2. Hydration for Wellness

Along with some simple adjustments to your diet, be sure you’re giving your body enough hydration. Doctors recommend eight glasses of water each day.

Try to start each day with a glass of water with lemon to give your body a jump-start and flush out your system

If you enjoy coffee or tea, you’re in luck. Both contain high levels of antioxidants, which are beneficial for your immune system. Just be careful not to overdo it, as the caffeine present in these drinks can counteract your hydrating activities!

3. Exercise and Yoga

When you exercise, you’ll boost your endorphins and serotonin levels which act as natural anti-stress chemicals in your brain.

Try to get at least 30 minutes of exercise each day, especially if you work in an environment where you are sitting all day long. Your daily exercise can be as simple as a jog or brisk walk, or as strenuous as weightlifting.

If you’re interested in trying new wellness activities, yoga can help relieve pain, increase flexibility, and balance your stress levels. Learn more about how chiropractic and massage professionals can help with stress-related pain.

4. Focus Your Breathing

Along with yoga, one simple wellness activity is to spend some time each day focusing on your breathing.

Learn to take slow breaths using your diaphragm. Imagine your belly expanding and contracting as you inhale and exhale. On its own, or paired with meditation or prayer, breathing exercises can give you a sense of peace and relaxation.

5. Set Realistic Goals

While work-related activities may not seem standard among other wellness activities, they are important.

If you find yourself stressed over work, try to break your days up into simple tasks. Start by making sure your daily to-do list is manageable. Only write down three or four things that need to be finished immediately.

By tackling only the most crucial tasks, you’ll find yourself worrying less about staying on top of work.

De-Stress with These Wellness Activities

Fitting these five simple wellness activities into your daily or weekly routine can have a major positive impact on your stress levels and overall health.

Do you have a favorite wellness method that works for you? Let us know in the comments!

5 Tricks That’ll Save You Money on Your Next Water Bill

save you moneyDid your last water bill give you sweaty palms and a racing heart? Huge bills are frustrating and can feel like you’re flushing your cash down the toilet.

If your bills have suddenly spiked with no warning, it’s likely that you’ll need to talk to some blocked drain plumbers to see if something has gone wrong.

But if they’ve been consistently high, here are 5 tricks to save you money on your next water bill:

1. Make Some Home Improvements

A few smart home improvements can make a big difference The first step is to inspect all of the appliances in your home. Look for drips and leaks, as these can quickly add up and impact your bill.

Pay attention to dishwashers, faucets, and toilets, as they’re the most likely culprits when it comes to sudden leaks.

You may also want to consider installing low-flow toilets or even converting your current toilets. This significantly reduces how much water they use, and can save you 2-5 gallons each time you flush.

2. Check Your Bathroom Habits

You may think that you and your family are doing your best to avoid using water unnecessarily. But most of us have at least a few water-wasting habits in the bathroom.

Here are some examples:

Take Shorter Showers

Simply shaving off a couple of minutes can make a huge difference and save you money on your water bills. Some people even use the Navy Shower technique and will turn off the shower while they’re lathering up.

Shave and Brush Wisely

Running the water while you’re shaving or brushing your teeth can quickly add to those bills. Instead, turn off unless you’re rinsing.

Flush Occasionally

Another option? Encourage the family to flush the toilet only when necessary, and “let the yellow mellow.”

3. Be Smart in the Kitchen

Many people make changes in the bathroom, but forget about how much water they use in the kitchen.

Consider reusing your dishes. Often, you don’t need a new plate or cup each time, which will mean fewer loads in the dishwasher and less water usage.

Hand washing your dishes is also a no-no. Dishwashers are much better at using water. If you don’t have a dishwasher, fill up the sink once and wash them all together.

4. Shop Around

If you think you may need a plumber, take the time to look into your options. There is a wide range of rates, and a plumber with an excellent reputation could charge up to $275 an hour.

If you just need a drain unclogged or a leaky faucet fixed, there’s a high chance you don’t need this level of expertise. Instead, ask for recommendations and find a plumber with reasonable rates.

5. Choose Quality Parts

It can be tempting to buy the least expensive appliances and parts. But many of them are cheap because they use plastic parts that won’t last as long as ceramic or metal.

They’re also less likely to be energy efficient. This means they’re more likely to break down, often need to be replaced, and cost more to run.

These Tips Will Save You Money

There’s no question that large water bills are a pain. But with the above tips, you can slash your bills while saving the environment.

Do you have any other great tips for saving money on your water bill? Or a question you’d love to have answered?

Leave a comment below or get in touch today.