Are you trying to eat healthier but are overwhelmed by the cost of ‘healthy food’? Food prices are more expensive than ever due to inflation and pandemic-related supply issues. In fact, grocery prices jumped 10.1% from January 2022 to January 2023. The good news is that you can save on healthy foods with simple and consistent strategies.
Here are 5 tips for eating healthy while keeping your pockets full.
- Avoid buying highly processed foods – buy whole foods instead. You might be surprised to see how much you are spending on prepackaged meals and snacks. Foods such as ready-made frozen meals, sodas, cookies, crackers, etc., often lack nutritional value and may be high in sugar and sodium. Your money is better spent on nutrient-rich foods that are closest to their natural, unprocessed form. These healthier options include whole grains, fruits & vegetables, lean meats, legumes, nuts, and seeds.
- Replace meats with other proteins. Eating less meat can save you money. You can still get sufficient amounts of protein by replacing meat with other proteins, such as beans, legumes, hemp seeds, and eggs. You can do this with up to as many meals as you would like, but usually, 1-3 meatless meals per week can save big bucks.
- Shop for produce that’s in season. Produce that’s in season from your local farmers is typically your best option nutritionally and financially. In-season produce is usually at its peak in flavor and nutrition. Out-of-season produce is often transported from other cities or countries, generally increasing prices. Also, studies show that most produce loses 30% of its nutrients just three days after harvest (Chicago Tribune).
- Buy frozen fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits and vegetables are typically in-season just a few months out of the year and can be very expensive. Frozen produce is usually just as nutritious and can be used all year round. This option is cheaper, and you can use frozen fruits & veggies on a per-serving basis. The rest of the produce will be kept safe from spoilage in the freezer, reducing overall produce waste and saving you money.
- Repurpose leftovers. You can save time and money by eating leftovers. You may want to plan ahead and make sure you will be home the following night to repurpose or reinvent yesterday’s meal. Be creative. For instance, turn grilled veggies from a whole grains bowl into a delicious Taco Tuesday meal. Also, make sure to invest in air-tight sealable containers to keep your food free from mold and bacteria (Forbes Health).
Eat Healthy and Get Wealthy
You don’t have to break the bank to eat highly nutritious meals. While it requires a bit more planning and preparation, eating healthy on a budget can be much less stressful than you think. Here are a few recipes to try that are delicious, healthy, and budget-friendly.
Roasted Asparagus Salad with Poached Eggs
Strawberry Banana Smoothie Bowl
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