How To Eat Healthy On A Budget
Are you trying to eat healthier to lose weight, but don’t want to lighten your wallet? Follow these 10 easy tips below to maximize nutritional benefits while keeping within your budget.
Cut Out The Junk
Avoid refined foods such as cereal, crackers and cookies. Although the clever packaging on processed products can be very appealing, your body will benefit much more if you stick with the nutrient-rich foods at the perimeter of the store. Make it a goal to choose whole foods over processed products. Grabs some nuts and fresh fruit instead of granola bars. Swap the cheese and crackers for baby carrots and hummus. Lastly, opt for fresh or frozen fruit for dessert.
Drink More Water
Soft drinks, sports drinks, sweetened teas, caffeinated concoctions, low-fat milk and many alcohol beverages provide shocking amounts of sugar, artificial sweeteners and other hazardous ingredients. Ditch the sugar habit by drinking more water. Add variety to plain H2O with zesty citrus wedges, cooling cucumber slices, spicy grated ginger or refreshing frozen berries.
Although the clever packaging on processed products can be very appealing, your body will benefit much more if you stick with the nutrient-rich foods at the perimeter of the store.
Shop With A Plan
“Failing to plan is planning to fail”. Be prepared by making a list of the items you need. Know that in-season produce will usually be better priced. For example, buy butternut squash in the winter and fresh berries in the summer. Lastly, eat before you hit the store or you’ll be buying every “drool-worthy” item in sight.
Stock Up On Sales
Look up the grocery store website before you go for coupons, weekly sales and monthly specials. Stock up on items you use often such as butter, olive oil, sea salt, ground meats, eggs, bananas, organic peanut butter or frozen spinach.
Buy In Bulk
Items such as nuts, seeds, gluten-free grains, dried fruits, coconut flakes, herbs and spices tend to be cheaper in bulk bins. You can also stock your pantry with dried items sold in bulk packaging at a discounted price.
Frozen fruits, vegetables and meats can actually be much cheaper than fresh foods
Be Freezer Friendly
Frozen fruits, vegetables and meats can actually be much cheaper than fresh foods, especially for organic options. Many of the produce items contain the same amount of nutrients, if not more, because they’re frozen when ripe instead of being picked before ripening and shipped a long distance to the market.
Learn To Cook
Dining out is certainly convenient, but can be quite costly. It’s time to terminate take-out and ditch the drive thru by learning to cook quick and delicious meals at home. With homemade meals, you know exactly what you’re eating and it’s made with love. You can also save money by packing leftovers for lunch the next day.
Use a Slow Cooker
Make mouth-watering lunches and dinners without spending much time in the kitchen by using a slow cooker. A slow cooker or crock pot costs about $30 and is excellent for tougher, cheaper cuts of meat. Get started with these recipes.
Most store-bought dressings are loaded with refined sugars, man-made fats and additives. Boost nutrients and benefit your budget by making your own fresh dressing using olive oil with citrus juice, apple cider vinegar or balsamic. Add fresh/dried herbs and spices for extra flavor. 10. Make Organic Count Opt for organic with animal products such as eggs, butter, chicken, yogurt, etc. Local farmers will often give you a good deal if you buy in bulk or if they know you’re a frequent customer. Also go organic with the following produce: apples, celery, berries, peaches, nectarines, grapes, bell peppers, potatoes, lettuce, and leafy greens (kale, collards, spinach).
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