When first looking at a large grocery store it might seem like all of the healthiest foods are incredibly expensive. This can sometimes be true when shoppers are unaware of the hidden ways to eat healthy. There are ten simple tips that can help an individual or a family to eat health without breaking the bank.
Buy In Season
Fruits and vegetables that are currently in season are usually shipped from a local supplier or are much more plentiful than most other times of the year. This means that these produce will cost less if they are purchased during the season when they are harvested.
Buy Local When Possible
Even large metropolitan areas have farmers outside of the city or gardeners within the city limits. There might be farmer’s markets or small stores that sell local produce for less than larger box stores. Finding a good local source means that inexpensive and healthy foods can be purchased for at least a short part of the year. Making personal deals with local farmers or gardeners is also a good way to buy local and healthy food inexpensively.
Shop At Bargain Stores
A healthy diet includes many different types of foods. Large discount stores or bargain stores that sell canned goods can be an excellent way to purchase staples or buy products like whole grain pasta that might be on sale. Large discount stores might have deals on vegetables or whole-grain products if they are purchased in bulk.
Buy Using a Store-Linked Credit Card
Most supermarkets have their own store credit cards. The great thing about them is that cardholders often get special deals and rewards when you shop in-store. So in theory, you could combine this tip with others on this list to very easily boost your spending. Be warned that in order to make using a credit card viable, you really need to pay it off in full each month to avoid interest charges.
Plan Meals Before Shopping
Money can be saved by creating a shopping list based on a meal plan before going shopping. Shopping without a list can result in expensive impulse buying. It can also leave the shopper confused so entire meals might be forgotten. Planning meals ahead of time can help to reduce the amount of calories that are eaten in a day and can lead to a healthier lifestyle.
Eat More Grains
Grains are very inexpensive and provide many health benefits. Incorporating grains like rice or legumes like lentils in a diet can help to make the body healthier while also extending meals. Many pounds of rice can be purchased for very little money and will last a much longer time than pasta.
Understand Organic Food
Eating healthy does not mean eating only organic food. Many organic food growers charge a premium price for the fruits and vegetables that they produce. Regular non-organic produce provide just as much of a health benefit if each piece is washed properly before being eaten.
Frozen Fruits And Vegetables
If fresh fruits and vegetables are too expensive to purchase because they are out of season, then inexpensive frozen versions are just as good. Frozen vegetables still provide most of the nutrition that their fresh counterparts would and cost a fraction of the price.
After eating a healthy meal, money can be saved during the week by refrigerating the leftovers and eating them for lunch or a snack the next day. Many people are unaware of just how much food is thrown away each day. This can also help expensive healthy foods last longer so nothing is wasted.
Prepare Snacks Instead Of Buying Processed Sweets
Brand name treats area an unhealthy and expensive temptation. It is often easier to make small healthier snacks at home. This can be done with simple ingredients like nuts, fruits and a small amount of sugar. Homemade snacks are almost always healthier and less expensive than salt and sugar filled processed treats.
Grow Plants At Home
Growing plants at home is a very simple way to eat healthy while saving money. Growing basil, tomatoes and peppers is very easy even inside of a container. Seeds can be saved from year to year and a garden started every spring to produce fresh herbs and vegetables all summer long.
Picture – Natalie Maynor