For many families and individuals, living off of a limited grocery budget can be a roadblock to healthy eating. Low priced foods are often from fast food value menus, to cheap snacks like potato chips, or processed pre-packed meals are also some of the least healthy. If you find yourself on a limited grocery budget, use my following tips to help you and your family eat healthier on a budget.
Tip # 1-Create a Shopping List:
Anyone who has visited a supermarket knows how dangerous it is to enter the store without a shopping list in hand. Shopping without a sense of what you need – and don’t need – opens you up to all manner of temptation, and most of those tempting foods are not nutritious. In addition, picking up all those extra items can easily blow your food budget and leave you without the funds to plan those healthy, nutritious meals. Therefore to maximize your grocery budget, plan out your meals on a weekly or bi-weekly basis including the items you need. Take this sheet with you and shop from your grocery list.
Tip # 2-Clip Coupons:
Most major food store chains publish weekly sales ads, usually as inserts in the local newspaper. Keeping track of these sales, and taking advantage of the low prices to stock up, is a great way to gather a cupboard full of healthy food. Once the pantry is full of fruits, vegetables and other healthy fare, it will be much easier to create healthy recipes for the entire family.
Tip # 3-Stock Up on Staples:
Stock up on essential staple foods such as brown rice, wraps (can be vegetable or any other healthy version) and whole-wheat pastas that are frequently put on sale at major groceries. Stocking up on these essentials when prices are low is a great way to stretch any food budget. If you’re allergic to wheat products, look for other healthy grains and items made from vegetables or peas like Chickpea pasta which is high in protein.
Tip # 4- Limit Shopping when Hungry:
Shopping when you are hungry is a sure way to give into temptation, bust the food budget, and stock up on all the wrong foods especially those that are carbohydrate rich when your blood sugar level is low. Carbohydrates are your body’s quickest source of energy. Eating a well-balanced meal before you grocery shop can keep you focused on your shopping list and fuel your time in the grocery store.
Tip # 5 – Become a Nutrition Label Guru:
Nutritional labels contain a wealth of information, but it is up to each shopper to read those labels and understand what they mean. Nutritional labels contain complete information on not just calories and fats, but the amounts of various essential vitamins and minerals as well. It is important to know how to read labels in order to get the best nutritional bang for your food bucks.
Tip # 6 –Replace Meat with Beans:
Eating less meat and more beans and lentils is a good way to save money on your food budget while still getting the protein you and your family need. Cutting back on meat can assist you in decreasing your risk for chronic illnesses like diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. Try experimenting with some vegetarian recipes for interesting ways to use these non meat alternatives.
Healthy Eating on a Budget is Possible
Although healthy eating can be costly, learning how to stretch your budget by creating a shopping list, clipping coupons, trading beans for meat and learning how to read nutrition labels can help you feed you and your family healthy options.
Looking for more information on “how” to eat healthier, “how” to consume the right amount of calories for weight loss and optimal health, check out my new nutrition book entitled “Don’t Complicate It-Healthy Eating and Living Made Simple”.
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Written By: Olympian, 13 x Wellness Author, Health and Fitness Expert Laticia “Action”Jackson
Featured on TV stations such as Fox 40, ABC 10, and NBC News as well as featured in over 30 health and fitness magazines such as Oxygen Fitness, Muscle and Fitness Hers, Strong Fitness and Flex Magazine as a thought leader on population health, women’s health and minority health, Laticia “Action” Jackson is a Fitness Olympian, 13 x Wellness Author, Globally Recognized Health and Fitness Expert and Owner of Well Content 4 u! Her passion is to help prevent chronic illnesses and empower individuals to take ownership of their health and well-being by providing relevant and evidence-based wellness information delivered through content, wellness workshops and online wellness programs. Learn More about Laticia “Action”Jackson Here!