Guest Post: 6 ways to keep your body – and your wallet – happy

by A Guest Writer · 10 comments

in Guest Posts

This is a guest post from Jonathon at Master Your Card. If you enjoy this post, why not subscribe to his feed!

I once read a very interesting article about a man who was late into his seventies and boasted about the fact that he had fewer prescriptions than his dog.  This guy was quite healthy and he made the claim that the reason he was enjoying such good health so late in life was because he and his wife only shopped in the outside aisles of the grocery store.  That means lots of fresh produce, meats, and dairy items while staying away from anything heavily processed.  He added daily moderate exercise to this regime, and what he got was good health late in life.

Eating healthy can save you money in the long term because of the benefits your healthy eating will have on your body.  You’ll pay less for medical care and you’ll have fewer missed days at work because you’re healthy…and that’s half the battle.

Here are six ways to keep your body – and your wallet – happy:

1.    Eat pure foods.  The fewer processed foods you eat, the better.  This will certainly take some getting used to if your usual dinner fare is frozen pizza and boxed mac & cheese, but by sticking to natural foods
you’ll wind up saving a lot of money on your grocery bill as well as get a little healthier while you’re at it.

2.    Pick and choose your organic items.  Organic foods are great, but they can get awfully expensive.  Figure out what you absolutely need to purchase as organic and what you can get away with getting that isn’t
organic.  Organic strawberries? That makes sense.  Organic shampoo? You can probably do without that.

3.    Buy local.  If your town has a farmers market then try to buy vegetables and fruits there.  The food is usually pretty healthy and the prices are sometimes less than a grocery store.  Just be sure to stay away from the booths offering crafts and other things that will cost much more than the person spent to produce them.

4.    Forget the gym.  An expensive gym membership may help you to stay healthy if you actually use the facility, but you can do most of the same exercises at home or in a park without the machines.  Spend a couple of dollars on a book that explains how to get fit without machines and then cancel your membership.  You’ll save the money and might even find that you enjoy working out in the great outdoors.

5.    Ditch your car.  How much money would you save if you didn’t have a car payment, car insurance, or needed to buy gas? How much healthier would you be if you walked or rode a bike to work? You might not be able to give up your car altogether, but if you can scale back on your car usage then you’ll wind up saving money while also getting more physically active. That’s a win-win.

6.    Drink water.  Instead of drinking coffee or soda throughout the day, drink water.  Drink it straight out of the fountain instead of buying bottled water.  You’ll save a bunch of money, and you’ll make your body happy.

When you’re trying to keep your wallet healthy there are some things you just probably won’t be able to do in the name of healthy living.  More than likely you won’t be able to indulge in detoxification treatments or cleansing rituals or membership fees to the trendy yoga studio downtown or whatever else it is healthy people are doing in your city.  Try to keep it simple. You can be healthy without breaking the bank.


1 fitwallet September 10, 2008

Here’s one I’m trying this month: don’t drink alcohol, or limit your consumption. Especially if you go out to a bar, that can add up very quickly. I figure quitting drinking for one month is going to save me $75-100 and a few pounds 😉

2 Dana September 10, 2008

Good Ideas.. the only one I’m not 100% sold on yet is buying organic. Is it really worth almost double the price?

Dana’s last blog post..Paint is Awesome!!

3 Kelly September 10, 2008


It is worth it to buy organic for certain things, although not everything. The general rule of thumb is that the thinner the skin of the fruit or vegetable, the better it is to buy it organic. Check out this post Five Things It’s OK to Spend a Little More On in which I linked to some good sites to determine which foods should be bought organic.

I admit it, there are a lot of times that I let budget take precedence over principle, especially when it comes to things like recycled toilet paper versus the cheap stuff. But some things really are better choices organic.

4 FruGal September 10, 2008

All these are really good tips. I actually find that being fit goes hand-in-hand with being frugal – if I’m out running at least I’m not out shoe shopping! 🙂

FruGal’s last blog post..Good FruGal, Bad FruGal

5 Erlyn3 September 10, 2008

You mention cars- while I have a car, I don’t really need it and I’m seriously considering selling it and joining ZipCars. I’d have the membership to pay for, but I’d save by not paying for car payments, gas, and maintenance.
Has anyone ever used ZipCars before, or heard anything about it?

6 fitwallet September 10, 2008

Erlyn, we have Zipcars and two other companies here in Philly. Philly Car Share is the biggest and most popular as it’s a local nonprofit, and there’s also Flex Cars. All three companies are doing very well and with gas prices so high, more people are joining. In our area, I can walk about 5 blocks in any direction and find a few cars from each company. When our car was in the shop for a month we signed up for PCS and used the service several times. It was great! It’s safe, convenient, and there’s no hassle with insurance, parking, etc. The only problem is reserving a car on weekends, when everybody wants to go somewhere.

7 Vintage Mommy September 11, 2008

I began to read this post just as I was considering a cup of tea and a bit of chocolate – I hope a treat now and then is okay!

I exercise regularly, including running and walking, but I love my gym membership. Going to classes and lifting weights there is as much a social thing as a health thing for me. Luckily my gym is really close and the dues are very reasonable – and worth every penny to me!

8 Randy September 11, 2008

Nice list, although I do take issue with the suggestion to cancel the gym membership. Having tried the DYI route, I feel comfortable saying that I have a lot more success when I have access to the right equipment. Gyms cut deals all the time, so shop around a bit…my current membership, including access to a swimming pool and sauna, runs less than $13 a month.

9 Tabs September 12, 2008

Jonathon is right I have been doing this for a few months now and while forgetting the gym will not my “behind” happy, I am saving money, eating healthier since I am cooking and it makes budgeting so much easier.


Tabs’s last blog post..How to Think The Certain Way Using the Science of Getting Rich

10 Dorea September 12, 2008

Erlyn3– We don’t have a car, and zipcar is really great for those times we just really need a car (which honestly, is hardly ever, but it’s nice not to mooch off of our friends when we do). If you don’t rely on a car for commuting, it can be extremely cost effective to use zipcar instead of financing a whole car yourself. We also found that renting by the hour shifts the economics so that you really realize how much a trip by car costs. You end up figuring out ways to do things other ways (by bike, train or bus) once you realize how much you can save.

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