how to be healthy on a budget

Countless times I have heard people say that they can't follow a healthy lifestyle because it's too expensive: pricey organic food, gym memberships, fancy running shoes, etc. I won't disagree with this, because it's not necessarily untrue. Health is an industry much like every other interest out there, & where there is money to be spent there are people willing to take it.

Between me & my husband, we're not exactly ballin'. We are young, trying to create a life together in the midst of bills & car repairs & medical expenses & such, like everyone else. Despite this fact, we manage to follow a plant-based diet, consisting of mostly (around 80%) organic food. I'm not strapped for cash at the end of my month, & still manage to save a decent amount of money. 

If you are interested in following a more healthful lifestyle, you can either choose to spend freely, or, like myself, save yourself the unnecessary expenditures. Here are some tips on living healthy on a budget.

Home-made, not pre-made. When you're trying to jump-start your new healthy lifestyle, it's really easy to get discouraged if you don't really know how to prepare food. But cooking is actually quite simple, & recipes are so easy to access. Making food at home rather than buying a packaged or pre-made meal is always the better option. For example, I never buy boxed granola. It's too expensive for what you get & sometimes you are led to believe you're eating something very wholesome, when really it's kinda terrible for you. You can buy all the ingredients to make granola & churn out tons of batches from them. This doesn't only save you money, but you know exactly what's going in your food as you have full control. Making things is not hard, just initially a little intimidating. Browse around for recipes, & learn that you don't have to be a chef to cook a delicious meal.

Buy seasonal. The easiest way to know whether something is seasonal or not is that usually it will be on a special sale in the produce section of a store. These items are not only at their prime while seasonal, but much cheaper than non-seasonal ones. For example, buying strawberries in the middle of winter for $7 a pint is ridiculous. Instead, buy a citrus like tangerines or grapefruit. Not only will they be cheaper, but think about how amazing Mother Nature is to provide you with all this naturally-derived Vitamin C during the times you're more likely to get sick. Wait for summer, & those strawberries will go down to $3.

Plan for everything. Whether it's your budgets or your meals for the week, planning is really key. Knowing roughly what you're going to eat, for example, & sticking to it really helps you from getting lost in the grocery store & buying stuff you don't need. I like to set a weekly budget for myself, where I buy certain fruits & vegetables that can be used in a wide variety of ways. In this way, I have nutritious food to make, even if it's a humble meal of roasted veggies & rice, for the entire week.

Don't get lost in translation. Being healthy doesn't mean buying a $6 juice from Whole Foods in the morning & paying $30 for a yoga class. It can seem like such an appealing thing, but in reality you can make a smoothie at home for about $.30 a day, follow a Yoga routine online & save yourself a lot of money. It's the same for buying workout gear: don't overdo it! Commit to something full time before you go out & spend hundreds on gear. Make smart choices, & stay grounded! Healthy does not necessarily equate fancy or high-end.

Use the internet to your advantage. If you're reading this, then you most likely have access to the internet at any given time. The web is a great thing, mostly, & it can be a wonderful guide through a healthy lifestyle. I use Youtube for workouts: I do Yoga almost every day, no gym membership required. Pinterest is a great way to find healthy, affordable recipes from all around the web, & I use it all the time.

Know that it's worth it. I know that I spend a little bit more on food that the average person, but it's just that: a little bit more. Spending those extra $15 on ensuring most of my food is organic is very important for me, because it ensures that I'm putting something pure in my body. I save money already from not shopping all the time, or spending tons of money on beauty products. As much as I'd like to do that frivolously, not only is it beyond my possibilities but unwise, because I would rather live this lifestyle! Choose what is important for you, & make those sacrifices accordingly.

I hope you find my tips helpful. I had to learn all these things on my own, & I'm so glad I did. Always keep in mind that being healthy has many definitions, but mainly for me it means being happy with the choices you are making. Following a lifestyle like this has many benefits, so don't become discouraged by the image another person is portraying.

Do you have any tips for living healthy on a budget?
Good luck, & thanks for reading!

Until next time, xo


  1. All good points. I'm on a pretty tight budget, but I do my absolute best to incorporate the healthiest foods into my diet. :)

    Jenny // Mish Mosh Makeup

  2. Thanks for the tips! I also think you can make small changes to have a healthy lifestyle without having to spend a lot a money! Internet is our best friend for free workout! ;)

    ps: just saying that but maybe you could increase your font size, it will be easier to read ;)

  3. This is such a great post, Sofia! There is always a misconception that eating healthy requires a lot more money when in reality it doesn't have to be when done right. I have some staples in my kitchen such as oats, quinoa, almonds, walnuts, whole wheat pasta, etc.. Just things that don't go bad quickly that I always eat. I just buy large amounts of these items whenever I spot them on sale so I'm never forced to purchase them when they aren't because I have run out. xx

    Celina | The Celution | Bloglovin’

  4. Great post Sofia! I think nowadays with so many sources you only spend a lot if you want to! :) XX

  5. Love this kind of posts <3

  6. I love this post - I completely agree with everything. It really is possible to live a healthy life on a budget and all these tips were really helpful!

    Emma |

  7. 1000000% agree that DIY is the way to go about saving money. Things like granola/breakfast cereals/smoothies are SO expensive when you purchase them prepackaged, not to mention all of the extra sugar/preservative/salt that they add to extend the shelf life.

  8. Being a full time student I spend all my money on food and equipment for college, luckily I've just got a job so things will change once my access ni comes through (thank god).

    I used to be a regular gym goer but that quickly fizzled out when I found a love for running/walking and using equipment of my own as well as the PumpUp app :) it means I can save a fortune preferably £20+ a month! And I'm not one for buying ridiculous amounts of exercise clothing especially if most of it takes place inside the walls of my house. I find using old clothes just as great! I can't wait to focus more on the diet side of things now :) x

  9. You're so right about the internet, there is so much accessible advice that gets lost!

    Annabel ♥
    Mascara & Maltesers

  10. Excellent and informative post. Thanks for sharing your tips :)

  11. Yess the internet has so many simple, but healthy recipes. Definitely agree about home-made food, I find myself succumbing to the convenience of fast/outside food. And wow I had no idea you were married!

    Sheri | Behind The Frames

  12. Great post. I've been trying to be more healthy recently and I find it really difficult as I suffer with quite severe food allergies to most fruits etc. homemade smoothies are a great way to save money.

    alice x | beautybyalicee

  13. Great post lily- i
    definitely agree that it's not more expensive to eat healthily. I've been
    vegetarian since birth and have been brought up on healthy and wholesome food
    on a tight budget. I've carried this on throughout university when I've been
    really strapped for cash. Making things yourself and knowing the ingredients
    you are putting into your body is so important, especially with things like
    granola which can have so much sugar and additives in! It also helps you
    understand what your body responds well to, and what things you need to feel
    fully nourished.

    from Nomad Notebook

  14. This looks delicious! Thanks for the tips! :)

  15. I completely agree with you, & am really glad you enjoyed my post! Thanks for reading xo

  16. I love smoothies! They're filling, quick, & pretty affordable. I'm sorry to hear about your difficulties based around food, hopefully you can find an answer to your problems! xo

  17. It's so easy to go for the quick option, obviously! But I always feel so much better knowing exactly what's going into my food, & that it's not contaminated with any nasties. Yes, I've been married for a few years now! xo

  18. I do the same thing! It's so helpful, because you can always build a meal around staple foods (like rice!). I agree with you. The point is, It can be so expensive to live any lifestyle - but that's ultimately up to you! Thanks for reading!

  19. You can make so many little changes here & there that reap huge results. It's just about dedication, not about fancy ingredients or expensive fitness classes.
    I'm sorry that my font is hard for you to read! It looks fine on my laptop, but I know that things tend to look smaller on wider screens. You can press ctrl & the '+' sign simultaneously to increase page size. It might make it easier to read! Thanks for reading! xo

  20. Thank you! That's the best you can do! Good luck <3

  21. Siobhan Amelia HattersleyFebruary 25, 2015 at 2:39 AM

    Thank you for the tips, really going to start eating more plant based. Thanks! xxx

  22. Hopefully it all works out for you! Keep posted on my blog if you're interested, I'm planning for a lot more food-based content xo

  23. Gorgeous blog design! Personally, I find trying to stay away for processed, convenient food the hardest! X

    Silk & Sparkles outfit post is up on my blog-

  24. Thanks darling! I understand, that can be such a challenge! I try to do the same thing, although sometimes I fail miserably :D Thanks for reading!


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