GUEST POST: Your Diet, Your Health: How to Eat Well, Feel Better, and Save Money

Do you think eating healthy is too expensive or wonder why you should bother? A healthy diet can shrink your waistline, but weight loss isn’t the only reason to choose nutritious foods over empty calories. Just look at these mental and physical benefits of a nutritious diet:

  • Better moods and fewer mood swings.
  • Improved focus.
  • Better sleep.
  • More energy.
  • Improved athletic performance.
  • Clearer skin.
  • Reduced digestive problems.
  • A stronger immune system.
  • Lower risk of chronic lifestyle diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.

Eating well doesn’t have to break the bank, either. If you think healthy eating means shopping organic at high-end stores like Whole Foods, think again. While eating well on a tight budget might require more planning, it absolutely can be done. Don’t believe us? These six budget-friendly shopping and cooking tips will show you how.

Buy in Bulk

Why pay for packaging? Instead of buying grains, beans, nuts, and other pantry staples pre-packaged, shop for these items in the bulk section. At most stores, bulk goods are considerably cheaper than packaged foods, and by transferring to a reusable container when you get home, you can keep these foods fresher for longer.

Use Coupons

When you do buy packaged foods, use coupons to score a lower price. You’ll find the cheapest prices on packaged foods at big box stores like Walmart. If you do a little digging before you shop, you can pair Walmart promo codes with coupons to save on everything from groceries to supplements.

Go Meatless

Beans aren’t just one of the healthiest foods you can eat, they’re also one of the cheapest. Instead of eating meat with dinner every night, cook a meatless meal once or twice a week. Opt for cost-effective vegetarian proteins like black beans, lentils, or tofu over meat substitutes, which can be expensive and aren’t always made with healthy ingredients. Not sure what to do with beans? Check out this list of 24 vegetarian recipes that even the most devoted meat-lovers will enjoy. Just be sure to prepare beans properly to avoid gastrointestinal problems.

Know When Organic Matters

You’re better off skipping the boxed macaroni and cheese entirely rather than spending more on the organic version — most highly-processed foods simply aren’t good for you, organic or not. However, some foods are worth buying organic, even if it means spending a little more. Foods on the “dirty dozen” list, including strawberries, apples, leafy greens, tomatoes, dairy, and beef, are the best use of your organic dollars, whereas foods on the “clean 15” list use fewer pesticides to grow and are less important to buy organic.

Shop In-Season

If you really want to save on produce, buy what’s in season. Seasonal produce varies depending on location, but in general, you can count on leafy greens, snap peas, and broccoli in the spring, tomatoes, peppers, melons, and sweet corn in the summer, and winter squash, cabbage, and apples in the fall. Eating seasonally also keeps your menu interesting!

Understand Your Supplement Needs

Even the healthiest of eaters need to supplement their diet sometimes. However, that doesn’t mean you should add a multivitamin to your daily regimen. To avoid getting too much of some vitamins and too little of others, tailor the supplements you take to your specific dietary needs and health goals. Talk to your doctor about which supplements can improve your health, and shop carefully to find high-quality supplements. If you buy from a company that doesn’t stand behind their product, you might spend money on something that doesn’t do what it claims. Don’t forget to be on the lookout for coupons for vitamins and supplements — brands like One A Day almost always offer them on their site.

Everyone deserves to fuel their body and mind with a nutritious diet, no matter what their budget looks like. Instead of assuming you can’t afford to improve your diet, try using these strategies on your next shopping trip. You’ll be amazed at just how much money you save!

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About the author: Sheila Olson has been a personal trainer for five years. She created Fit Sheila to spread the word about her fitness philosophy and encourage her clients to stay positive. She incorporates mindfulness and practices for reducing negative talk into her sessions

If you’re interested in being a guest blogger on No Ordinary Liz, feel free to contact me with your creative ideas!!

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GUEST POST: No Ordinary Guide to Moving Interstate: 5 Most Practical Tips of All Time

Moving, like having your legs waxed or cavities filled, is a task that is expected to be far from fun. However, not liking it won’t change the fact that it must happen when it needs to be done. Daunting as it may be, relocating to another state can become a lot easier and less stressful.

Resourcefulness and rational thinking can get you a long way in terms of relocating. From planning and packing to dealing with the actual move, you should be fine if you know (and follow) the five most practical moving tips of all time:

1. Create a Moving Calendar

Like other important tasks, being organized with your move can help you get through the entire process without fainting from exhaustion and stress. And this can be achieved by creating a moving calendar.

As the name suggests, this is a timeline for important tasks that need to be done and the right time to do it. It should also indicate a task list that is organized according to importance to help you focus on what needs to be prioritized during the long process of moving, such as buying supplies, packing, and dealing with the necessary paperwork for the move, among others.

2. Pick a Reliable Moving Company

The importance of getting the best removal services cannot be overstated. While you may opt to DIY your move, an interstate relocation may just be too challenging for you to tackle on your own. That said, make sure to take advantage of professional help by hiring not just the best in the business but also by choosing those who can offer the perfect deal for your allocated budget, schedule, and specific needs.

3. Utilize Clever Packing Hacks

Packing is an essential part of the moving process, but it is also one of the most excruciatingly tiresome of them all. To ensure that you get this task done efficiently, here are some clever packing hacks you can try for your interstate move:

● If you want your new home to feel like the old one, take a photo of every room to know which items go where.

● Prepare a moving toolbox that contains all your important packing and organizing supplies, so you can bring them anywhere in the house.

● Save on packing nuts and bubble wrap by using towels, socks, and beddings to protect breakables during the move. This way, you can use standard packing supplies for really valuable, fragile items.

● Put a rubber band across the doorknob on all rooms in your old home to prevent them from closing while you pack.

● Organize cords and wires using toilet rolls to prevent tangling and damage. You can also take a photo of your electronic devices, including the side where all the cables are still attached.

● Tape cords and cables to the appliances they go with before packing them for more organized unpacking.

● Keep clothes on their hangers and put plastic over them to avoid soiling them on moving day. For last-minute moves, it is also wiser to keep folded clothes in their respective drawers and transport them as is.

● Box items according to the rooms they belong to. Aside from labeling, this will ensure that you don’t drown in the mess and forget which item goes where.

4. Prepare an Essentials Bag

An essentials bag is just as it sounds—a bag of the most basic items you need to survive the first few days in your new home. This should include at least three sets of clothing, toiletries, food and beverages, beddings, and a first aid kit complete with maintenance medications. If you’re still unsure what to put in your essentials bag, remember this: the key is to pack as if you’re going on a weekend getaway.

5. Reduce Your Load by Decluttering

Moving costs more if you have more belongings to pack and transport, so make sure to declutter before you relocate. Decluttering doesn’t need to be a nightmare if you strictly follow a specific rule for segregating the items you should keep from those you need to get rid of.

● Allow ample time for this process (at least two weeks before the move) to make sure you get through everything without making rash decisions.

● When dealing with consumables, try to use up as much as you can before the move. This means you should forego a trip to the grocery store unless absolutely necessary.

● Segregate non-consumables according to three container categories: to keep, to donate, and to throw away.

● After that, bring all three containers to each room and put items in them as you go depending on what you plan to do with each item.

Make Moving a Breeze

No move is too challenging if you have the right tools and know how to accomplish it. Make relocation a manageable part of your life by following these tried-and-tested tips so you have a stress-free interstate move.

About the Author:

Craig Jones is the Managing Director at Aussiemove, Australia’s largest independent moving alliance. Craig is a respected member of the removalist network in Australia, having served in senior positions, including the President of the removal industries governing body, the Australian Furniture Removals Association (AFRA). With 23 years of experience at Aussiemove, he has the skills and the highly trained team to move families safely and reliably, in Adelaide, across Australia and around the world.