Eating healthy is so much more expensive.
To be honest, I used to think this as well.
I thought it would be crazy expensive. I also thought that organic and free range food was way overpriced (hint: It’s not!). After I started to eat more local foods and purchasing directly from farmers I began to develop a real appreciation for quality food.
For example, it costs about $3-4 for a bag of potato chips at the grocery. That same amount of money can buy a pint of local blueberries or raspberries at the market and the best part is, the berries are far more nutritious, are better for the environment, and you’re supporting a local farmer (not a big conglomerate).
Not only is eating whole foods better for your health and longevity but if you’re conscious about when you buy the things you do, you can actually save money. (Yes, even eating really well! And it’s not that hard!)
Here are some of my top tips for eating healthy on a budget!
- Buy in bulk. Shopping at places like The Bulk Barn or the bulk section of your grocery store, you get better prices on everyday foods. I buy my rice, nuts, quinoa, oats, seeds, nut butters and flours in bulk whenever I can.
- Eat what’s in season. Farmer’s markets and produce sections usually have big displays of things that are in season. If you buy fruits and veggies that are on sale you save money. Fruits and vegetables are also much cheaper than meats, dairy and packaged foods.
- Avoid pre-packaged foods. Anything pre-packaged lacks nutrients and is more expensive than making it yourself. Most packaged foods also contain a lot of unnecessary waste. Not good for the environment or the pocket book.
- Plan your meals. Meal planning helps you purchase only what you plan to eat and cook. This eliminates waste and encourages home cooked meals which are always healthier and cheaper.
- Plan for leftovers. When making dinner, plan to cook more than you need so you will have healthy prepared food for the next day. When you have food on hand you will feel less likely to hit up Mickey D’s on your way home, saving you both time and money!
By taking a few extra steps, you and your family can make eating healthy on a budget totally doable. Choosing to eat a few vegetarian meals each week is also a great way to keep costs down.
So, next time you head out to buy groceries, make sure you to shop the perimeter of the store (almost exclusively), buy what’s in season or on sale, and buy in bulk whenever possible. Not only will you feel better knowing you made healthier choices for you and your family, but your food bill is likely to be the same as if you purchased a ton of packaged items.
What small changes can you make to improve your health and decrease your food bill? Comment below.