Invest in Your Health with AIB’s Top Budget Friendly Tips

Woman running by the sea at sunset.

It’s true that fresh and healthy food is often more expensive. According to a study carried out by the Harvard School of Public Health, it can be around €1.30 more each day to eat a healthy diet compared to an unhealthy diet. While this may not seem like much, for a family of four over the course of a year this equals nearly €2,000. We all know are lots of nice things this cash could go towards but compared to the cost of an unhealthy lifestyle, this figure is slim pickings.

According to a recently published report by the World Health Organisation, if the trends at the moment continue, about 89 percent of men in Ireland will be overweight by 2030. Waist bands stretching at this can lead to a surge in certain health conditions which in turn places a heavier burden on our health system. While not all of these diseases are preventable, many of the major contributing factors can be kept under control by not smoking, exercising regularly, reducing alcohol consumption and eating a balanced diet.

To help you get back on track just in time for summer both financially and in terms of your health, AIB brings you our guide to investing in being healthier with these top ten budget friendly tips:

1.Cut out the goodies
Give the crisps, chocolate and can of coke a skip today or at least start cutting down. While the first few days may be tough, after a week you won’t know yourself! Go the extra mile and stop taking sugar in your tea and coffee. It might taste a bit dull at first but your pallet will adjust in no time.

2.Swap red meat for veg protein

By changing out some of your red meat for vegetable protein, you’ll be doing your heart the world of good. Healthy dishes like lentil soup taste great, are cheap to prepare and store very well.

3.Eat out less

Put a budget on the meals you eat out in restaurants. Prepare dinners at home and take left overs with you for lunch. Both your wallet and waistline will thank you here as you will save money but also know exactly what’s going into your meals.

4.Avoid the local chipper

Despite what the big, bright signs would have you believe, take away foods aren’t really all that cheap. There’s more ‘super savings’ in a ‘mega family meal deal’ that you prepare yourself in your kitchen from your local supermarket. Again, this one’s a winner on both the funds and the hips.

5.Earn your running shoes
When you invest in a new pair of flashy trainers, they’ll normally last you about 800km. Next time you’re going to splurge on the latest trendy gym footwear, make sure you’ve earned them first.

6.Don’t break the bank to look the part at the gym

The latest swanky Under Amour gear may make you feel a little cooler in the gym, but odds are it won’t help you lift heavier or last longer on the treadmill. Invest in good, durable gym wear that will last.

7.Walk more

Walking more often is not only a great way to stay active, it will also help you cut down on expensive transport costs, weather permitting of course.

8.Trade screen time for outdoors

As the summer approaches, swap your time indoors browsing Facebook or Netflix for some outdoor activities. Go for a jog in your local park or ask your dog if he’d fancy a second walk today. Chances are he’ll be up for it and you’ll feel great without spending anything. Plus, you can always read that Buzzfeed article or watch the rest of ‘Better Call Saul’ later.

9.Become a mobile 'tech head'

There’s a whole host of free apps and planners available from the App Store on your iPhone or Google Play on your Android device. Try one of these and you’ll be surprised how much easier it is to stick to an exercise regime or a healthy eating plan when you track your progress.

For more information on how you can get your budgeting and saving in check, visit our AIB Banking Tools page for handy how-to videos, easy links to our downloads and apps, our loan calculators and links to the AIB Support Channels.

Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.