Committing to a healthier lifestyle doesn’t necessarily mean emptying your purse at the local health food store to pay for extortionately priced organic health foods. Healthy eating can be done on a tight budget with a bit of extra planning.
Here are the Detox Bible top tips on how to eat healthily without spending a small fortune…
1. Plan your meals
Try to plan ahead for the coming week to work out a meal plan. This doesn’t need to be very detailed however giving your meals some thought before you head to the supermarket will help you to avoid overspending on foods that you don’t really need.
2. Make a shopping list
A simple – and obvious – tip, however it’s worth the mention as listing what you need (and sticking to your list) can help to shave pounds off your weekly shopping costs.
3. Look out for special offers
The marketing machines of many major supermarkets are tuned into the healthy eating demands of the public and will run special offers that can help to save you money. For low cost fruit and veg, check out Aldi’s weekly ‘Super 6’ – a mix of seasonal fruit and veg at reduced prices.
4. Visit the markets
If you have the time, try to visit your local market stalls. Many offer fresh, locally produced fruit, vegetables, meats and fish at good prices. And if you visit at the end of the day, you can often benefit as market sellers sell off their remaining stock at a fraction of the price!
5. Prepare your meals at home
Eating out, even just for lunch, soon adds up and also limits the healthy meal choices available to you and leaves you open to making the poor decisions when you’re hungry. Instead, prepare your meals in advance at home and if possible, make the most of your ingredients by cooking in batches and freezing your meals for the days ahead.
6. Avoid shopping when you’re hungry
Another well-known tip but worth the reminder. When you’re hungry, you’re less likely to stick to your healthy shopping list and more likely to make impulse purchases to satisfy your hunger pangs – costing you more and leading you to make unhealthy choices.
7. Stock up
When you spot a good offer on a non-perishable food item that you use often, such as rice, lentils, nuts and seeds, it’s worth taking advantage of the discount. Buy a few extra and keep them to one side to save you some money in the coming weeks.
8. Freeze it
A good tip for seasonal food is to stock up and freeze it. It’s best to avoid buying fresh fruit or vegetables that are not currently in season as these tend to be more costly.
9. Don’t waste leftovers
This may go against the grain a little as we’re all so used to binning any leftover food however you can make some tasty and healthy meals from your leftovers by turning them into something new. For example, chicken and vegetables can be made into a wholesome soup while other leftovers can be tossed into a salad or used as a healthy snack, all helping you to make your food budget go that little bit further.
10. Choose inexpensive healthy foods
Whole grains, lentils, beans and rice are all extremely nutritious yet inexpensive food products. A great way to add flavour, protein and fibre to your meals, these staple health products are ideal for keeping your costs down when sticking to a healthy eating plan.
Just a few small changes to how you shop can make a big difference to your weekly food budget when eating healthily. And if you find yourself questioning the cost of healthy eating, remember how expensive unhealthy meal options, such as a takeaway or ready-made meal, can be.
Do you have a top tip for healthy eating on a budget? Share it with us here at the Detox Bible!