Most people consider it common knowledge that healthy food is expensive and unhealthy food is cheap—that’s why we’re all so fat, right? But for most people, it does not need to be this way.
Most of us would like to adopt a healthier eating program in order to lose weight, feel better, and reduce the likelihood of developing certain diseases and illnesses. However, eating healthier often means spending more money, which can make it difficult to stick with this type of eating plan. The majority of people think that eating healthy foods is expensive and eating poorly is cheap. This is probably because fast food is so inexpensive to purchase and high-quality meats and fresh vegetables seem more expensive. This is not actually true. It is very possible to eat healthy foods and save money at the same time simply by cooking more meals at home!
Here are tips for saving money on your favorite healthy foods:
1. Skip The Prepackaged Salad Mix
Sure, bagged salad mixes are convenient. And anything that makes it easier to eat your veggies is a good thing. But they’re also expensive and can quickly go from perky to wilted to downright slimy. So try buying heads of lettuce (which often last longer in your crisper) and make your own mixes. Try mixing up romaine, radicchio, red leaf and/or escarole.
2. Buy Frozen Berries
Fresh berries are often very expensive, especially when they are out of season. Frozen berries cost much less and they're just as nutritious for you. Plus, with frozen berries, you don’t have to worry about eating them before they go bad. Throwing away rotten food is like wasting money!
3. Buy Whole Foods
As opposed to pre-cut, chopped, minced, etc. Grocery stores charge a premium to do the chopping, and while it’s super convenient to have someone else do the prep work, it’s also more expensive.
4. Buy Seasonally
You will be much more likely to stick to your healthy diet plan if the foods you are eating are delicious. Fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables will simply taste better and because they are in season, they will cost less too.
5. Switch Your Meal Proportions
If you eat meat, remember that one portion is 4 ounces uncooked, which means that 1 pound of raw meat should yield four servings. Cutting back too-large portions of meat to the recommended amount and bumping up your veggie intake can be an easy and effective way to reduce food costs.
6. Grow Your Own
Another option for salad greens is to grow your own—they don’t take up much space and they grow quickly. For about the cost of a bag of salad greens ($3), you can buy a packet of seeds for mixed salad greens. The packets have 500 seeds and will plant a 30-foot long row of greens.
7. Go To The Local Farmers Market
Farmers markets often sell healthier, fresher and locally produced foods at lower costs. This can be a great way to save money and eat better. Just make sure that you pay attention to what you are buying and how much you are spending to prevent spending too much.
8. Get Chicken-Savvy
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are super-convenient and practically fat-free, but they’re usually the most expensive way to buy chicken. Buy breasts when they’re on sale or, to save money, buy a whole chicken and roast or grill it. Use leftovers in soups, salads or sandwiches. Whole legs, drumsticks, and thighs are also good bets if you don’t have time to cut up a chicken.
9. Stop Wasting Food
Go to the store more often, rather than doing one big shop, to ensure you’re only buying exactly what you need. There are some great tips out there about how to make food last longer, so be sure to follow those best practices. Freeze leftovers, buy in bulk and freeze the extras until you’re ready to use.
10. Look For Your Favorite Meats On Sale
Not only is your freezer great for frozen vegetables, it’s also great because it lets you take advantage of low prices when you find them. Stock up on the meats you like when you find them on sale. Also, buy extra fresh fruits and vegetables when they’re in season and less expensive, then freeze them for later.
Eating healthy foods doesn’t have to be more expensive, as long as you make smart decisions about what to eat and how much to spend. In this post, I shared with you tips for saving money on your favorite healthy foods.
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