Eating Healthy on a Budget
I asked on Instagram a couple of weeks ago what the biggest obstacle was in regards to eating healthy. The number one feedback I received was "cost!". Admittingly, I do tend to spend a little too much on food sometimes. There are certain things I see as more of an investment in my health so will opt to spend more money on, like high quality supplements for example. I am also lucky that a lot of times I get sent products to try, but I know the average person won't (and shouldn't) have a cupboard full of trendy and expensive supplements and superfoods. You do not need fancy mushroom coffee mixes, expensive supplements or to always buy everything organic.
Here are my top tips for eating on a budget:
1. Plan your meal in advance. For me one of my biggest pet peeves is going to the grocery store multiple times during the week. I have gotten pretty good at getting all the things I need in one or two trips. Take a minute at the beginning of the week to plan out your meals.
2. Shop in bulk, especially if you are buying things for baking. It can get expensive if you are buying full packages of products you might only need a small amount of. I check out the bulk section and buy just what I need.
3. Buy foods that are in season. Ever notice that strawberries are like $7.00 in the winter? That's because they aren't in season! Our bodies like to eat seasonally anyways so opt for local and seasonal produce. As we head into the summer months we naturally crave lighter more cleansing foods. Most produce is much cheaper in the spring and summer months and farmers markets are also great places to check out as well.
4. Go meat free a couple of days per week. Meat is expensive. I personally don't eat a ton of meat and I like to incorporate organic tofu or tempeh into my meals once or twice per week. A block of tofu is about $3, cans of beans and legumes range from $2-$3 so its easy and cheap to prepare a meat free meal.
5. Get a Costco membership. Seriously, they have the best prices on things like almond butter, avocados, gluten free crackers and produce. I also find they have a good selection of meat and seafood. Go with a friend and spit things if you won't use all of it.
6. Not everything you buy needs to be organic. When buying organic, look for buying produce on "the dirty dozen" list: spinach and leafy greens, berries, apples, pears, potatoes and celery.. basically produce that you eat the skin of. Bananas, avocados, oranges and grapefruit don't necessarily have to be organic so keep that in mind!
7. Use up your left overs. One thing I hate is food waste. If I have veggies that are on their way out I will either toss them into my smoothie or make a big omelette or stir-fry. Also try meal ideas that use the same ingredients.
8. Meal prep or batch cook. Eating out can get expensive, especially if you do it every day! I typically don't do a big meal prep but definitely like to have a few things hand like a protein (chicken, fish, tofu) and a grain like brown rice or quinoa. Then you can throw together a quick meal with some extra veggies and healthy fats for a nourishing meal.
Budget Friendly Meal Ideas:
Eggs and omelettes
Tofu and veggie stir-fry
Burrito bowl with brown rice, veggies, black beans and salsa
Quinoa pasta salad
What are your go-to tips for savings money and eating healthy? Comment below!
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