Are you looking for ways to become healthier or even lose weight? What if there were ways to reduce calories and your energy bills at the same time? Some of the best strategies to live a healthier lifestyle will also benefit your wallet and the planet.
Use your car less and bike more
Americans spend an average of $150 per month on gasoline to power their vehicles. According to a study conducted by the National Household Travel Survey, 35 percent of car trips are less than three miles. If you left the car at home and rode your bike for three miles instead, you could save hundreds of dollars in gas each year. Plus, biking is a great way to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors. In the time that it takes you to bike three miles, you could burn about 100 calories. And the avoided stress that comes from driving in traffic will work wonders for your blood pressure and overall well being.
Lower your thermostat
In the cooler months, you can save a lot of money by lowering your thermostat. Did you also know that this can reduce your body fat too? Cooler temperatures cause your body to use more energy to maintain its core temperature. A study found that people who wear light clothing in a 60 degree room burned between 100 and 200 calories per day more than normal. If you do this all winter, you could drop 5 to 10 pounds.
Go to bed an hour earlier
There is no need for your TV, laptop, or kitchen lights to be on if you are sleeping. So the more you sleep the less electricity you’ll need to consume (make sure these devices are actually off before you go to bed). And there are big health benefits from getting an extra hour of sleep. A recent study found that people who sleep five to six hours per night gain 88 percent more weight over a six year period than people who sleep seven to eight hours each night. Sleeping more can also help you improve your memory, lower your stress, increase your creativity, and live longer.
Get everyone off the couch and off their phones
Instead of plopping onto the couch and turning on the TV after dinner, take a walk. Instead of playing video games, tell your kids to play outdoor games in the backyard. Your electrical devices cost you money and take time away from healthier activities. Make a goal of spending one hour a day without the TV, computer, or phone on. You will find plenty of ways to fill that time, and you may want to increase your goal over time.