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Answers from the BJC Experts

Ask the BJC Expert allows you to get the answers you need about a variety of health, medicine and exercise issues to help you live a more healthy life.

Please browse the most recent questions below or use the search the questions feature to see if the answer to your question is already given. If not, please submit a new question for our experts.

I noticed a lot of recommendations on eating better, but eating better may not be possible for all. Fruit is not cheap. Leaner meats cost more. So, what can a person do if they have limited means, as most of us do. Most of the BJC exercise places want some kind of money, as well.

You can still eat healthier on a budget. Limit the amount of margarine or oil you use in cooking. Bake or grill meats instead of frying. Trim fat off meat. Rinse hamburger after it's been cooked to help reduce fat. High-calorie foods like chips and cookies aren't cheap either, so buy baked chips, pretzels, lower fat snacks. Buy generic brands, shop for sales and choose such things as graham crackers for snacks.

Canned fruit can be cheaper, just avoid the heavy syrup. Look for sales. Canned vegetables can work, be sure to drain and rinse in a colander if you are watching your sodium.

Portion size is important. Even if you can't eat the fully healthy foods, decrease your portions. Look at what you're spending on fast food, chips, candy and cookies to see if you can save any money for the healthier foods.

As for exercise, walking is the best and easiest form of exercise there is. You don't have to pay to exercise, just put on your tennis shoes and walk. If that is difficult, consider mall walking or renting an exercise tape to do at home. Just increasing activity such as parking farther, taking an extra trip walking through the store can be beneficial. Be sure always to check with your doctor before beginning an exercise program.

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