Updated: Oct 28
Countless times I have heard people mention that they cannot eat healthy because it is too expensive. They view eating healthy as an “all or nothing” activity and that everything needs to be organic. While, yes, eating organic can be a healthy way to go, it is not the only way. Also, thinking of it as all-or-nothing is just sabotaging your own health. Any little change you can do is a step towards a healthier you.
Yes, You Can Eat Healthy on a Budget
Below is a list of changes I found helped others and myself as well. Do not expect to do all of it, pick and choose which ones will fit your lifestyle and wallet.
Buy fresh fruits and vegetables when in season and frozen when they are not.
Do not buy package green salads. Yes, they are convent which I am still drawn too from time to time, but per ounce, they are more expensive.
Eat less. Take a look at what you are eating in a day, if your portion sizes are more than they should be, cut back. But do not cut back so far that you are starving yourself, shoot for eating 4-5 meals/snacks a day.
When grocery shopping, stick to your grocery list. Plan meals ahead of time so you know exactly what you need to pick up at the store then take the list with you to the store. Oh, and don’t shop on an empty stomach! You will come out with more food than you planned.
Look for sales and plan meals accordingly. Some of the stores have smart phone apps which allow you to add on “electronic coupons”.
Try less expensive cuts of meat.
Prep meals and snacks ahead of time so when you are short on time, healthy foods are already there and you are not tempted to grab junk foods. I found prepping my lunches helped immensely! I am not a morning person so come morning, I did not have to think about what I was going to take for work and was able to just grab and go.
Keep an organized fridge and pantry. Knowing what you have may keep you from buying items you don’t need at the store.
Shop farmers markets on Sunday, close to the end of the business for best deals.
Buy in bulk.
Make meals in bulk when able, especially if they make good left overs. This ties beautifully in with the tip which discusses prepping your meals.
If possible, grow your own food. This actually has a dual purpose if you like gardening as it has been linked to helping manage stress, anxiety and depression.
Do not buy drinks. Drink more water, saves you money and calories.
Eat out less. If you have a tendency to eat out multiple times a week, try cutting it back to once a week.
Go generics more often. I know there are some brand name foods that are better than generic, but there are just as many generics that are just as good as brand names.
Focus on eating healthy 80% of the time. To be “healthy”, you do not need to eat healthy 100% of the time. Eating healthy around 80% of the time allows some flexibility in your diet and helps keep you sane.
Organic when able, focus on thinner casings on fruits and vegetables.
Avoid or decrease the number of “superfoods” you are buying. They tend to be pricey and some are not as amazing as they are hyped up to be.
Cook from scratch and avoid ready-made meals and grains.
Rearrange your budget. Is there another area you can shave down and put that extra money towards food?
Change perspective, how much is feeling good worth to you? Eating not so healthy foods may save you money now but how much will you save when your health goes bad and you need medical attention for conditions related to diet?
I Want To Hear From You!
Are there tips you have found works for you which are not in this article? Please let me know as I would love to hear them and share with others. If you found this information useful, please follow me on Facebook and Instagram. Any fitness related questions? Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can message me on Facebook. (I will NOT use your email for any type of mailer list or spam!!)