The cost of food is rising constantly every year.
Factors like inflation, and more recently, pandemic-related supply chain issues are few of the primary reasons behind it. This makes maintaining a healthy diet on a budget tough. It doesn’t mean that you can’t overcome this challenge, rather, it means you need a strategy and plan in place for shopping and preparing meals.
Even though healthy foods like veggies are often associated with being overpriced, you can still purchase and eat these nutritious foods without breaking the bank if you can get a little creative.
Here are 5 tips and tricks you can use to lead a healthy lifestyle without breaking the bank:
Plan and Cook Your Meals in Advance
Planning and cooking your meals for the week ahead is the best way to reduce the likelihood of you eating out which will save a lot of money.
It’s simple to prepare a plan where you’ll cook each meal according to the ingredients you currently have and the ones bought on sale. Because you’re in control of the ingredients used it’s easier to cook healthy and nutritious meals without going over your budget. Plan the meals you would like to eat in the upcoming week. Cook all the dishes on weekends and freeze them for later use.
Purchase Seasonal Fruits
It’s a known fact that fruits are high in vitamins and other micronutrients. They have the highest amount of nutrition, phytonutrients and antioxidants. They are arguably one of the healthiest foods you can eat for a fit lifestyle.
Besides health benefits, seasonal fruits are cost-effective and taste better due to their freshness. Seasonal fruits don’t have to travel a long way to reach your local grocery store and that’s why they are fresh and priced lower. Always prefer seasonal fruits for maximising health benefits and minimizing expenses.
Buy in Bulk
Buying food items in smaller quantities not only demands multiple visits to the grocery store but also proves to be expensive in the long term if you do the math. However, buying in bulk will significantly reduce the price per unit of daily staples like nuts, seeds, grains, etc.
A lot of these items when sold in bulk are often discounted heavily. Search for bulk bins in your nearest grocery store or consider joining a group of bulk buying. Also, shop at discount stores but ensure that the quality of the item is not compromised and remember to check the expiry date of the same.
Compare Prices Before Buying
Always shopping at the same place can keep you unaware of the real price of these food items. To ensure you’re getting the best deal, consider taking a visit to multiple grocery stores before completing a purchase. Additionally, compare the same food items from different brands. Don’t buy the cheapest one, buy the one that fits your budget.
Also, it’s good to take a look at the generic products as they are cheaper than their branded counterparts. Compare the prices of non-branded food items with the branded ones as more often than not both will maintain the same quality with a big price difference.
Replace Meat With Plant-Based
Protein is one of the most important macronutrients and without sufficient protein, there’s always a chance of muscle loss, weakness, fatigue, etc. To meet their protein requirements, most people nowadays prefer eating meat regularly.
But here’s the problem, meat is expensive, especially for someone who is tight on budget. It’s not getting cheaper, in fact, the prices of meat are constantly increasing. However, there are many plant-based foods that have moderate protein content, are healthier and cheaper making them a better option than meat. Here are some of them:
Nuts and nut butters
By incorporating more plant-based foods in your diet and reducing meat consumption, you’re not only going to get more nutrients but will also save some vital money.
Staying physically fit is essential to live a happy and fulfilled life. Similarly, creating and following a healthy nutrition plan is necessary to keep all diseases away.
To make sure money doesn’t play a bad role in your journey to a healthy lifestyle, follow the tips provided above and make sure to follow them on a constant basis.