Healthful habits can help you improve your physical and mental well-being, and they can also help you save money. Here are five ways to improve your health and finances:
Eat less meat.
Studies show that people who eat less meat tend to be leaner and are less likely to gain weight. Numerous studies also have shown that switching to a vegetarian diet can lower cholesterol levels. Plus, you can cut your grocery bill by replacing meat sources of protein with beans and vegetables. A can of beans usually costs less than $1.
Quench your thirst with water.
Water is your best bet for hydration because it's calorie-free and inexpensive. Considering households spend on average $850 a year on soda, and drinking just one soda every day can add 10 pounds of extra weight in a year, according to Drink Water First, water is a good choice. Just skip the pricey bottled stuff.
Drink less alcohol.
Consumers spend an average of $445 a year on alcoholic beverages, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Cutting back or eliminating your alcohol consumption can save you several hundreds of dollars every year. What's a moderate amount? One glass of wine a day for women and men older than 65 and two for men 65 and younger.
Exercise with friends.
Exercise is an easy way to improve your health. Not only does physical activity help you control your weight and combat chronic health conditions, it can also make you feel happier, relieve stress and give you more energy. Exercise can also lead to higher wages because it boosts productivity, according to a study published in the Journal of Labor Research.
If health warnings haven't convinced you to kick the habit, consider smoking's hefty price tag. A pack-a-day habit adds up to nearly $2,300 a year on cigarettes, plus almost $13,000 annually in estimated related costs, according to the American Cancer Society. It's pretty simple math.