Eating healthy is a goal for many people as it should be. Your diet can improve your overall health and well-being and even prevent you from getting certain illnesses as you age.
The problem with eating healthy is that it’s not always convenient and it can seem costly.
Healthier, whole food can cost an arm and a leg while with fast food, you can fill yourself up on a $3 meal.
If you’re on a tight budget, you shouldn’t give up on eating healthy completely.
Here are a few real ways to stretch your food budget, free up space in your wallet, and even lower the cost of healthy food so it can be more affordable for you.
Shop at Local Farmer’s Markets
If you don’t shop at local farmer’s markets, you’re missing out. It’s fun to walk around and see what local vendors have. The food often premium quality, fresh, and taste better. Plus, organic produce is far less expensive than it is in the grocery store and you can support local farmers.
When the farmer’s market starts back up in your area, give it a try and see what you can find.
If there are no farmer’s markets in your area, considering growing some of your own food. It’s easier than ever these days since there are tons of kits, plants you can purchase, and resources to help you along the way.
Look Out For Organic Produce Sales
Balancing your diet is important and the main foods people don’t eat enough of are fruits and vegetables.
I used to think I couldn’t afford organic produce. I wanted to eat healthier fruits and vegetables that were less exposed to pesticides but once I looked in the organic food section and saw that a pepper or cauliflower that was $3, I figured I’d be better off taking advantage of the low prices on regular produce.
Nowadays, I do purchase organic produce more often but I’m still not spending a ridiculous amount of money on it either. I realized that organic produce does go on sale just like everything else and you can even use coupons to lower the costs.
Stores like Whole Foods and Kroger have coupons on organic produce. You can also find coupons online on sites like All Natural Sales, Organic Truth, and Organic deals.
Is organic always better? Not necessarily. Sometimes organic is not much better than the regular stuff so it’s important to know your foods and which ones should be put on the organic priority list.
Foods like apples, potatoes, grapes, peppers, and tomatoes are naturally dirtier and need to be cleaned thoroughly before consumption. Purchasing some of these items organic when they are on sale or if you have a coupon is a good idea.
Buy in Bulk
You may think that buying in bulk would cost you more money, but it can actually save you money if you do it the right way. Purchasing pre-made food and packaged items can be a waste of money when you can just purchase a big container for less.
Take oatmeal for example. Purchasing flavored packages of oatmeal with individuals packs inside is going to be much more expensive (and less healthy) than purchasing a big container of oats in bulk and flavoring it on your own with fresh fruit.
You can purchase whole grain rice and raw beans in bulk then throw in a little meat and make a stew or soup. The meat and/or beans will give you protein and the healthy grains will the necessary vitamins and minerals you need.
Purchase Store Brands
I always buy store brands over name brands whenever I can. The food almost always tastes the same especially when it comes to fresh meat that doesn’t have any flavor yet. Some grocery stores even have their own line of healthy food products so you can save a few dollars with each purchase.
It doesn’t sound like much but it will add up when you’re getting everything rung up at the checkout.There are lots of ways to save money on healthy food and make it more affordable. Click To Tweet
Cook Your Own Food and Utilize Healthy Online Recipes
Cooking your own meals is the absolute best way to ensure that you are eating healthy. Purchasing whole and fresh food instead of pre-made food with preservatives is much healthier. When it comes to preparing your meals, don’t overthink it.
Use the internet to find affordable and healthy recipes you can create without spending too much time. If you have chicken in your freezer and rice in your cabinet, searching for something as simple as ‘cheap and easy recipes with chicken and rice’ will provide you with literally thousands of options.
You can also cook your meals in batches or meal prep for an entire week so you’re not preparing them each day.
Eliminate Unnecessary Purchases
Another thing you can do to afford healthy food is cut down on unnecessary purchases and expenses to free up more of your income. Paying for groceries is a necessary expense for many of us unless you’re an extreme couponer.
It’s important to be mindful of what you put in your body and eat healthy foods that are going to give you the nutrients you need. What’s not necessary is making impulse purchases or dining out on unhealthy food regularly.
Reign in on you unnecessary purchases, give up a few of your take-out meals per month and even consider cutting an expense so you can be able to afford to eat healthier.
These are a few ways that you can eat healthy on a budget, but you must be open to getting creative and cooking your own meals most of the time.
Get to know the grocery stores in your areas along with the type of deals and discounts they offer. Search for coupons online and use free meal plans and recipes online to improve your diet.
Your health is something you can’t afford to skimp on but you can lower the costs of leading a healthy lifestyle.
How do you make purchasing and preparing healthy food more affordable?