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Having No Money Is No Excuse For Bad Health – 33 Ways To Upgrade Your Health For Free

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“I don’t have enough money to eat healthy or go to the gym.”

I hear and read it all them time.

Welcome to the world of excuses.

I’m not judging you. I have the same thoughts from time to time. But then I remember: There are various ways to deal with this excuse. Let’s look at three of them.

Illustration by Wren McDonald
Illustration by Wren McDonald

What would you do?

Buy a lottery ticket? Go to Las Vegas? Open a lemonade stand?

All valid ideas, but the ones making the most money realized that $5 is almost nothing to begin with, so they changed the question to: “What can we do to earn money when we have $0?”

Through this way of thinking they got rid of the money as a limited resource. You can do the same with your health. Stop using money as an excuse for your bad health. There are a lot of free things you can do.

Below I’ll list 33 things you can do to upgrade your health without spending any money.

  1. Once an hour stand up and walk around for 5 minutes. Studies have shown that too much sitting is bad for your health. This also works great with the “Pomodoro technique” which advises to have a 5 minute break after 25 (or more) minutes of focused work. (You can use the “Time Out” app for this, it’s free).
  2. Drink your coffee without the sugar.
  3. Don’t drink soda.
  4. Go outside (in the sun) for at least 10 minutes. Sunlight will promote vitamin D production in your body, which is a good thing since 40–75% of people are vitamin D deficient. Sunlight during the day also helps your circadian rhythm and lets you sleep better at night.
  5. Avoid bright lights and screens before bed. They worsen your sleep.
  6. Exercise at home. Pushups, squats, planks. You don’t need a gym for that.
  7. Floss.
  8. Use a nail brush to clean your nails. Nails are often the “dirtiest” spot on the body. Try to keep them clean. (If you don’t have a nail brush, this might cost a few bucks. Sorry :/)
  9. Sit on the toilet the better way.
  10. Think of 3 (or more) things you are grateful for. Write them down if you want to. Try to list 100.
  11. Once a day give your eyes a break and only look in the distance for at least 30 minutes.
  12. Install f.lux on your PC. (Since there is a chance that you are using a pc or mac to read this, you can install f.lux (it’s free) which decreases the blue light (which is bad for your sleep) in the evening.)
  13. Take a walk or go jogging/running.
  14. Laugh. Did you know that kids laugh around 300 times a day and adults only 5 times? What happened? Laughing is very good for your health, so do it more often! Watch a youtube video or read a joke.
  15. Meditate. Studies have shown that meditating is good for all aspects of your health.
  16. Do a breathing exercise. 4–7–8 is a popular breathing technique. 4 secs in, 7 secs. hold, 8 secs. out (with a noise).
  17. Eat slowly.
  18. Eat only until you are 80% full. This a popular advice from the Blue Zones and they seem to be healthy.
  19. Fast. This will not only cost nothing, but save you money and time. Do it for 12 hours, 24 hours or a few days, but educate yourself before doing it.
  20. Don’t worry. Worrying is bad and unnecessary. Think about your most recent worries, weren’t they useless? Worrying gets your away from the present and into the future, which is, as I said, useless most of the time.
  21. Don’t stress yourself. It’s the same as worrying: useless.
  22. Don’t smoke. (Obvious, but also generic. I admit it. No matter it even saves you money.)
  23. Avoid sunburns. You should go into the sun, as mentioned above, but at the same time you should avoid sunburns.
  24. Put your phone in airplane mode when going to bed. This decreases the amount of radiation during your sleep and decreases the probability of unnecessary interruptions during the night.
  25. Drink a glass of water after waking up. It gives you energy and restores the fluids you lost during the night.
  26. Hug somebody for at least 6 seconds. This releases oxytocin, a chemical in our body, that let’s you feel good and promotes health.
  27. Play. Whatever you like: play a game (you can borrow them somewhere), play catch, etc.
  28. Take a cold shower.
  29. Walk barefoot.
  30. Finally start using all those spices and herbs you already have at home. Most of them will be beneficial for your health.
  31. Switch your coffee for tea sometimes (if you drink coffee. Choose green tea which is really healthy. This also prevents you from getting “addicted” to the caffeine.)
  32. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  33. Drink enough water.

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