People complain all the time that eating healthy is expensive. The reality is that healthy eating can be cheap and quick too. Difficult economic times do not mean that we have to sacrifice our health — or budget – when it comes to food. With careful planning and a little effort, healthy eating can fit into a budget, but preparation and planning are key. Be thoughtful, kind, and respectful to your body. PLAN AND PREPARE. Plan meals ahead of time that will stretch you a month long. What works for me is buying chicken in bulk, large bag of frozen vegetables and berries that last me the month- along with my natural herbal homeopathic products. This is what works for me and I am just giving an example of how I choose to live a healthy lifestyle and not burn a whole in my wallet. Although it may seem a lot up front- I average out my costs to at most $12-15 a day for breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner. That’s extremely good considering people will go out for lunch at that price, plus tip, and even more for dinner. It’s important to shop when you are not hungry and go strictly to the aisles you know where your items are at on your list. On a day you are not busy pre cook some chicken (or your preferred protein) that will last you 3-4 days so all you have to do is heat it up and prepare with whatever you are having on the side. Throw on some legumes/beans, stir fry vegetables, brown rice,etc to make it a balanced lean and mean meal. All these in bulk are budget friendly.
- Choose your meat wisely and buy in bulk. You then can freeze it properly and use it at your convenience.
- Or Consider Going Meatless: Skipping meat, even once or twice a week, can help save money, since meat is usually the most expensive part of a meal. I read even at current prices, you can save $210 per year by swapping out 1 pound of sirloin ($5.99) with a 14-ounce block of tofu ($1.96) once a week for a year.
- Discover Great Ways to Use Canned Fish: Canned salmon and tuna provide omega-3 fats, which help keep your heart healthy by lowering triglycerides and blood pressure. The difference: canned fish is really cheap. At just $3.68 per pound (just over 3 cans at $1.15 each), canned tuna is a delicious, healthy and cheap option for dinner. Get creative.
- Grains and legumes are inexpensive and pack a nutritional power punch.Plus, they add a heaviness to a meal that most people rely on meat for.
- Buying bulk can save a lot of money. You can purchase grains, pastas, dried fruits, nuts and flours in the bulk isles of your grocery or natural foods store. You can choose the amount that works for you (bulk doesn’t mean you need 25 pounds of rice at a time!), and bulk food sections give a lower price per quantity ratio while saving on packaging.
- Seasonal foods not only taste better, they are more nutritious and they don’t need to be shipped in from half a world away!Seasonal foods will often cost less as well. Think ahead and stock up on fruits and vegetables in their natural season in order to can or freeze them for the off season.
- While it may seem like some processed foods are cheaper, the real steal is on the nourishment they provide. Empty calories still leave us hungry for real food. When we spend money on real, whole, organic, herbal and fresh foods, it is essential that we shift our old ways of food shopping.
Small shifts in the way we feed ourselves and families can help us find that sweet spot between staying responsible with our budgets, and feeding ourselves healthy, organic, herbal,and vital foods/ supplements. Think of all your food items you purchase as little treasures you are going to store in your chest box full of gold!!!!!
For questions on meal planning and fitness evaluations email me at firstname.lastname@example.org