By Liran Hirschkorn
Everyone knows that living a healthy lifestyle with plenty of exercise and a healthy diet can lead to your body looking and feeling great, but there are also financial and logistical reasons that could motivate you to lead a healthy lifestyle and to promote it throughout your family. Many people think that it is expensive to live healthy because the cost of food is much higher, but the overall benefits should outweigh the perceived fallbacks (which are no better than excuses to not try) of living healthy – and you may find you save money in the long run.
Fewer Doctor Visits
Maintaining a healthy diet includes physical exercise that keeps your body strong, and a balanced diet of natural foods that keeps you fueled and fit when paired with the exercise. This combination means that you and your family will be making fewer trips to the doctor, especially later in life. Being overweight leads to many health complications like diabetes, joint problems, higher risk of heart attack or strokes, high blood pressure and maladies like fatigue, shortness of breath, and other common ailments that bring people into the doctor’s office. Having the proper diet with low amounts of processed sugar should also mean you’ll be going to the dentist less than someone who consumes a lot of sweets such as soda or candy.
Lower Insurance Costs
Going hand in hand with doctor’s visits; people who are active and healthy often experience lower health, life, and even disability insurance costs – especially if your plan requires a physical. Lowering the likelihood that you’ll have health issues, like the ones mentioned above, means that the insurance companies will be more confident that they won’t have to pay benefits should you become hospitalized or take a lot of doctor visits and you’ll be able to experience lower premiums and rates as a result.
Waste Not, Want Not
Everyone’s going green now, and surely you don’t want to be contributing to the staggering amount of waste that is being produced daily around the world. Eating naturally (and locally) helps to keep your carbon footprint down. Those processed foods that are terrible for your body are also terrible for the environment. They’re basically manufactured at large plants that have their own large carbon footprint, and many of these foods are wrapped in all kinds of plastics and other materials that wind up in landfills. Fresh produce that is grown locally has a small carbon footprint and there is little you’ll be throwing out. Plus, you can even use the byproducts of produce to start a compost bin which can help to fertilize a home garden which helps lower your food expenses.
If you’re buying local produce and exercising using local gyms or resources then you’ll be benefitting the local area. Buying local often means going to farmer’s markets where you’ll be surrounded by the freshest foods that are all in season. Foods grown in season will always taste better and provide better nutritional value than the same food grown out of season and shipped in from across the country (or world, for that matter). If you’ve ever bitten into a bland and juiceless cantaloupe you’ll know what I’m talking about.
If you’re buying fresh produce and staying away from processed and prepackaged foods then you’ll need a way to prepare healthy and delicious meals. Before I made a lifestyle switch I used to eat a lot of pasta and ready-to-eat meals that I could just heat up in the microwave or oven. This took no creativity on my part. Preparing meals from scratch or trying out a new recipe has turned me into a capable cook (in my opinion) and I’ve developed a decent set of skills that I didn’t have before. This also saves me from eating out as much since I can create great dishes myself which saves my wallet, and I get to control exactly what I’m putting in my body. I’m also feeling better about myself and have a more positive outlook now that I’m exercising regularly and eating healthier.
Don’t let the cost of fresh produce or a gym membership be an excuse not to eat and live healthier. The benefits go far beyond just losing weight and can actually help you save money throughout your life if you start young.
– Liran Hirschkorn is the founder of ChooseTerm.com and promoter of healthy lifestyle choices. He helps individuals across the country get the best term life insurance rates.