Lower Your Body Fat, Promote Wellness, and Sleep Better-on a Budget

By Karen Weeks

At any age, too much body fat can cause detrimental health effects. By reducing your body fat, you can achieve better sleep, enhanced wellness, and many other health benefits. Here’s how—without overextending your budget.

Invest in Affordable Workout Wear and Gear

Starting a new workout regimen often means adding in workout wear and gear, and you can save by shopping at retailers like Dick’s Sporting Goods. You can go online and find Dicks Sporting coupons and promo codes to save even more on your purchases.

Choosing gear like fitness trackers can also boost your motivation to keep active. Studies suggest a positive correlation between activity trackers and increased physical activity in older adults. Fitness trackers can monitor your heart rate, step count, and even sleep trends, providing data that can be useful for improving your habits.

Assess Your Sleep Habits

Having new athletic gear can give you the motivation you need to start losing excess weight. But did you know that losing fat and improving your overall health can also affect your sleep? Studies suggest that losing fat—especially belly fat—enhanced “sleep health.”

After losing 15 percent of their body fat—along with about 15 pounds—participants in one study experienced fewer episodes of sleep apnea, fatigue, insomnia, and other issues, notes Hopkins Medicine.

Of course, dropping weight is healthy regardless. But knowing that lowering your body fat percentage can improve sleep offers additional motivation to reach your fitness goals.

Cook Healthier and Cheaper at Home

It’s no secret that cooking at home is more affordable than eating out. In fact, ordering restaurant delivery can cost four times as much as cooking at home. Unfortunately, meal kit delivery isn’t much better at nearly three times the cost of home-prepared meals. And eating fast food involves excess calories, sodium, unhealthy fats, sugar, and cholesterol that can impact your health and weight-loss progress.

But preparing healthy meals can be a part-time job on its own. One way to eat better without spending all day in the kitchen is by investing in a pressure cooker. Before you begin shopping, consider reviews, pricing, and ease of use on each model to select the best option.

Healthy foods you can bulk-cook include steel-cut oats, lentils and beans, sweet potatoes, chicken, and soups and stews, explains Very Well Fit. With simple recipes that take little time to prepare, you can enjoy a warm meal every night of the week.

Make Protein Your Priority

While truly healthy meals require a balance of nutrients, protein should be a priority for seniors. Older adults need protein to maintain muscle mass, preserve strength, and support bone health, notes Kaiser Health News. Studies have shown that consuming protein also helps seniors stay healthier longer—and that includes cognitive well-being, too.

Eating more protein than carbohydrates and fats means fewer calories that contribute to fat buildup. In short, prioritizing protein in your diet can mean you eat fewer empty calories and boost your metabolism. Studies have also shown that older adults with high protein intake experience fewer bone fractures.

Choose Bone-Healthy Exercise

Seniors are often at risk for conditions like osteoporosis, which means some exercises can be hazardous for your health. Fall risks are also a concern for older adults, especially if you live alone.

Fortunately, low-impact exercise, like yoga, is healthy for people of all ages. The benefits of yoga practice include a lower risk of hypertension, stronger bones, and lower body weight. You might notice you feel more balanced and stronger, too.

Other low-impact exercises like water aerobics, walking, and cycling can add variety to your fitness routine and help you shed excess fat.

The positive effects of weight and fat loss on your overall wellness are priceless, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend a lot to become well. The initial investment in fitness gear and healthier food options won’t break your budget, and the payoff will be worth it.