Ten simple tips to help you lose weight on a tight budget

Do you want to save money and live and healthier lifestyle? The Healthy Mummy can help you lose weight, tone up and shop on a budget for the entire family and actually SAVE DOLLARS.

To help you get started, we’ve pulled together the ULTIMATE guide of tips to help you with every aspect of your lifestyle.

10 tips to help you lose weight on a tight budget

1. Limit your options

Just because your meal plan offers different meals and a variety of snacks each and every day, that doesn’t mean that you have to cook them ALL!

For instance, on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge we provide our mums with a new meal plan each week loaded with different snack ideas and main meals for every day of the week.

This is because we want to give our mums a variety of options to suit tastes, seasons and budgets (while seeing awesome weight loss results). But if you want to cook something for dinner and then have it the next day for lunch, that will save you time and money.

2. Cook in bulk

Bolognese collage

If you know you’re going to cook up something like Bolognese or Chilli con Carne, plan ahead to make a big batch and reuse it. For instance you could make it into nachos, a pie or a wrap for the next night’s meal.

Same goes with sides like quinoa – serve it with your dinner and then use leftovers to make porridge in the morning.

3. Plan your snacks

Don’t go making a new morning and afternoon tea each day. Choose a couple of options to make on Sunday to enjoy for the rest of the week. For instance you might make some bliss balls, some dip to enjoy with chopped carrots, and some healthy slice.

4. Check the calendar

It’s important not to overextend yourself on days or weeks that you know you’ll be busy. So if you have to work late or the kids have activities on a Tuesday afternoon, factor that in so that you have a pre-prepped meal or something easy for dinner that night.

5. Avoid buying snacks out and about

Banana Berry Breakfast Muffins

A café style muffin or bliss ball seems like a quick option when you’re getting your caffeine fix, but crunch the numbers. It’s probably around $3-4 for a muffin and maybe $3 for a bliss ball.

Check out the ‘cost per serve’ information on all of our budget recipes and you’ll soon see how much more you’ll have in your wallet at the end of the month (plus being homemade means they’re a LOT healthier).

6. Buy on sale and store

We all have items we buy all the time, so look out for special offers. For instance if your family love blueberries you can stock up when they’re on offer and pop them in the freezer to use later (they thaw very quickly, or can be used frozen in a smoothie).

If you have pantry space, stock up on things like tinned tomatoes or legumes when they’re at a good price.

7. Switch it up

Just because your meal plan calls for fresh prawns, doesn’t mean you can’t use something else. Swap them for some chicken breast or thinly diced beef if you prefer (or if it’s cheaper).

Same goes for things like fruit or nuts, most of our recipes are very adaptable to suit most other options.

8. Use cheaper options


If you want to save your pennies you might want to avoid certain ingredients and use alternatives instead. For instance you might use dried basil instead of fresh in a marinade, or tinned tomatoes instead of fresh in a pasta sauce.

Frozen fruit is often a lot cheaper than fresh too (think raspberries and mangoes especially).

9. Grow your own

Gardening tools and plants on land

If you have the space (even one pot!) try growing some fresh herbs and salad leaves at home. Parsley is really easy to grow, and when you buy a bunch at the supermarket you could be paying around $14 per kilo.

You could also try growing cherry tomatoes, chives, rocket and chilli – these work even in small spaces.

10. Take a list (not your appetite)

Get Your FREE Meal Prep Recipe Pack

As part of the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge you’ll be able to download your own customised shopping list to take to the supermarket with you. Take this along and remember the golden rule NEVER SHOP WHEN HUNGRY and you’ll be well on your way to filling your trolley with healthy goodies to help you lose weight.

To help you SAVE MONEY – we’ve also pulled together EVERY single money saving tip we can get our hands on for saving, food shopping and lifestyle. Check it out here.

Be sure to also download our FREE Meal Prep Essentials Guide + Recipes.

10 Easy health and fitness tips for busy mums

1. Don’t compare yourself to others

transformation pic

You may not be able to help yourself from looking at other mums (especially celebrity mums on social media) and think “They make it look so easy!”

The truth is that everyone is different – with different schedules, budgets and responsibilities so there is no point in feeling guilty or jealous of someone else. The best thing to do is figure out what works best for YOU and your family and go from there. You know yourself best!

2. Multi-task with exercise

Hanging out the washing squat

Exercise doesn’t mean just running on a treadmill for an hour! If you have a busy day ahead of you and don’t have time to hit the gym, there are plenty of ways to sneak in a little exercise.

Do some squats while hanging out the laundry, dance around the kitchen while you’re cleaning or even try doing some bicep curls with your grocery bags!

3. Cook in bulk and save the rest for the week

It may sound full on, but by spending a few hours in the kitchen and meal prepping for the next few days, you will save a lot of time and effort later on in the week.

So when it’s the middle of the week and you’re feeling tired and unmotivated to cook, you just have to grab something out of the freezer and dinner is sorted!

4. Use what you have in the kitchen


Save money and time by going through your pantry, freezer and fridge to see which ingredients you already have. Leftover veggies?

Whip up a quick stir fry or roast them up with some pasta for an easy hearty dinner! You can customise your meal plan and swap ingredients and meals on our 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge app.

5. Go vegetarian for a few nights to save money

Meat is one of the more expensive ingredients so next time you’re at the supermarket, opt for the cheaper cuts or simply go vegetarian.

Eggs, nuts, legumes and tofu are some great replacements for meat that won’t break your bank balance either!

6. Buy what’s on sale


Plan your meals around what is in season or on sale. If a smoothie recipe calls for berries but they aren’t in your budget, go for the frozen options or swap them for a fruit that is on special, it will still taste delicious!

7. Surround yourself with support

Positivity and support are SO important when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle. If your family and friends aren’t giving you much, our Healthy Mummy Private Support Group is full of likeminded mums who are there 24/7 to give you support and encouragement on your health and weight loss journey.

 8. Include the kids in your workout

Steph loves DanceFit with the kids

Kids LOVE being active and moving their bodies, so next time you go to the park, don’t sit on the sidelines but get involved! Play a game of soccer, take a bike ride or have a dance party in your living room.

They will LOVE it, especially as kids love copying their parents!

9. Exercise when the kids are asleep

Sometimes though, us mums need a bit of “me time.” Once the kids have gone to bed, take that time to focus on yourself and squeeze in a workout of your choice. That way there will be no interruptions!

10. Repeat meals

bolognese recipes

When you’ve figured out which healthy meals are your family’s favourites, cook up extra big batches of them to eat throughout the week.

For instance if your family are big Bolognese fans, enjoy it with pasta one day, mash and veggies the next or even on toast! Get your free meal prep recipe pack here.

Top 6 tips on how to begin planning your weekly meals

1. Utilise your appliances!!

Kaitie Purcell Appliances mealprep
Slow cooker, rice cooker, electric frying pan, stovetop, oven. When doing a bulk cook up I always pre-plan how I can get the most out of my appliances!

2. Bulk dishes out with veggies and lentils

Kaitie Meal Prep
I add lentils and grated vegetables to most meals, this helps to bulk out meals at a small cost. I also love that I am squeezing more nutrients into my family’s meals.

3. Shop online and look at sales!

Kaitie budget shop

I love planning my meal prep around the current shop sales to get the most bang for my buck!If on a strict budget shopping online can be a game changer! You can always see the total before reaching the checkout, you can easily compare prices and you can limit impulse shopping!

4. Freeze all your leftoversMeal Prep kaitie

Freeze EVERYTHING!!! All leftovers – curry paste, tomato paste and liquid stock, place in an ice cube tray and transfer into labeled ziplock bags to reduce wastage. Freeze herbs in an ice cube tray with a little olive oil, bananas going bad? FREEZE them, perfect for smoothies or defrost when you are making banana bread next time!

Always label and date food you are freezing, whether it is uncooked meat, curry paste, bananas, meals or prepared snacks. All containers should be labelled with the date and you should make sure you rotate if you are adding extras to the freezer regularly.

5. Use the ingredients you have on hand and make a plan to cook a variety of meals that use similar ingredientskaitie App

Pick recipes from the Healthy Mummy App which use the same ingredients so you can buy in bulk and save money that way, this will also make your meal prep day a lot easier. If mince is on sale you could make:

You could add lentils to bulk these out and use the same grated veg for each recipe – carrot, onion, zucchini and capsicum.

6. Make a plan!Kaitie Purssell meal prep list

Planning is key when it comes to meal prep and weight loss! It helps you set yourself up with the correct ingredients and it helps you get the most out of your time in the kitchen. Having a weekly meal plan and sticking to it really helps with smashing weight loss goals but it also helps with weekly budgeting.

10 tips mums swear by to make sure they hit their weight loss goals

Mel Golding before and after

1. Reassess your goals – are they achievable?

2. Check your BMR if you aren’t seeing any changes. 

3. Find a buddy to check in with daily.

4. Count calories if you need more accountability.

5. Go back to basics, drink more water, move your body, eat fresh food.

6. Make small daily goals to complete such as drinking your water OR HAVE A SMOOTHIE INSTEAD OF SKIPPING A MEAL.

7. Be kind to yourself. This is a journey for a reason. You can expect to make mistakes, and have bad days but they only lay the foundation for good days. 

8. Save money and customise dinners or use leftovers to ensure you are not wasting food and energy cooking.

9. Make time for ‘me time’ and plan your week and set goals.

10. Stop and appreciate the efforts you are making and celebrate the WINS, that can be anything from being organised with meal prep to waking up earlier and doing Dance Fit. Every small change will make a HUGE DIFFERENCE in the end.

Healthy Mummy founder Rhian Allen’s top 6 for timesaving and eating on a budget

1. Start earlyrhian lunge

I wake up before everyone else so I can fit in a workout before it all gets hectic with work meetings, school drop-off and all the other distractions!

2. Meal prepping makes life so much easier!rhian featutred

I like to do a big cook on the weekends and freeze meals so that on the nights I don’t have time to cook I can pull out a healthy, family-friendly meal and have it on the table in minutes.

3. Keep a diarydiary

Writing down your goals and seeing them will keep you accountable so you can track your weight loss and health.

4. Use a list when you do your grocery shopping and stick to itshopping list

Take note of what you already have in your fridge, freezer and pantry and remember you can always swap ingredients for what you already have.

5. Buy in bulkfull shopping

You can save heaps of money by buying large amounts of certain ingredients like meats, frozen fruit and veggies, pasta, rice and tinned goods.

6. Shop online!

after pay

If you’re often tempted by the unhealthy things you see on special, you can avoid being impulsive with your purchases. It’ll save time and money as you can compare prices and you don’t even need to leave the house!

11 tips for staying on track with your weight loss journey

1. If you are finding it difficult to find a whole hour to workout during the day then try to do a few quick workouts a day. You don’t have to do a full hours block, it all adds up.


2. Set your alarm for earlier than the kids wake up and do a quick morning workout in peace! It’s a great way to start the day.

3. Make a plan and stick to it! Set a time/day to exercise and just DO IT! Push yourself, NO EXCUSES!

4. Reward yourself on a regular basis for sticking to your plans/smashing your goals. Treat yourself to something you want to have or want to do.

chelseas goals

5. Cheat meals occasionally are ok! You have to live! If you have a dinner out with friends/partner etc, just go and enjoy yourself! By not restricting yourself so heavily, then it’s sustainable. It’s a lifestyle change. You want to have fun!

6. If you have a dog… walk it! Your dog will love you, you will love it and walking is great exercise! We don’t do it enough, but if you have a Fitbit/health tracker use it. Try to do your steps. 10,000 steps a day is recommended. The average office worker does half that.

Read 17 creative ways to reach 10,000 steps a day and How walking the dog helped this mum lose 17kgs & tackle mental health issues.

Walking the dog

7. Make water your best friend. Our bodies need it, and it is essential for weight loss!

Read Why drinking water with lemon juice can help with weight loss.

8. Every mistake or “fall of the wagon” is a learning curb. Don’t beat yourself up about it, it’s not a fail. Learn from it. Why did it happen? Was there a trigger? Try to work out how to not let it happen again.

9. Not a morning person? Lay out your workout clothes the night before or sleep in.

10. Try to get enough sleep, sleep is so important!

Tips for staying motivated

11. Never EVER give up! You can do this. Believe in yourself. Make yourself a priority. You deserve it.

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