7 Money Saving Tips from a Nutritionist
Saving money on food is often easier said than done, especially if you’re trying to eat quality, nutrient-rich foods. Processed and artificial foods are always so much cheaper, so it can be quite expensive to eat healthy. However, dietician and author Susie Burrell has a few tips to help you save money on shopping for healthy foods:
- Cut the fluff — No matter how hard you try to buy only healthy foods, there are always unhealthy little “extras” that sneak in. Perhaps you buy juice to mix into your protein shakes, or you buy low-fat chips to snack on between meals. Whatever these extras are, cut them. Buy ONLY raw foods: grains, proteins, fruits, veggies, nuts, and so on. You may not have something tasty to offer to guests, but at least you won’t be cheating on your diet. Plus, you’ll slash your shopping expenses drastically.
- Buy local — Farmer’s markets are an excellent place to shop for fresh produce. The produce may not last as long as the chemically-treated fruits and veggies you buy in a supermarket, but you can save a bit AND support local farmers and businesses as well. Find out when there are street markets and farmers markets near you, and shop on those days.
- Limit your extra food purchases – Who has time to cook every night? Sometimes, it’s easier to just to order takeout food or go out to eat. Surely you can afford to have a special date night out once every week or so, right? Well, if you’re trying to cut costs, it’s time to limit these extras. Save up to go out to one nice restaurant per month, and avoid ordering takeout food. It may be a bit more work to put a home-cooked meal on the table, but it’s both cheaper and more nutritious than takeout!
- Buy staples online -- It’s tough to avoid unhealthy food items as you stroll the supermarket aisles. There are so many tempting foods that you may be suckered into buying something you don’t need and shouldn’t eat. Instead, ONLY shop for fruits and vegetables in the store, but buy all of your canned goods, dry goods, frozen goods, and packaged foods online. Most big supermarket chains offer this service, which will help you to avoid buying anything you don’t need. Plus, it will save you a trip to the store!
- Cook multiple meals at a time – This may not sound like a lot of fun, but it’s a great way to scale back the amount of food you eat while guaranteeing that your meals are as nutritious as possible. On Sunday, cook enough food to last you for three or four days, or even for the entire week. Divide the meals into individual containers and freeze them. For busy parents or professionals, this is the best way to have ready-made meals that will take a few minutes to defrost and serve.
- Trim your menu options -- Instead of making a new meal every day, cook three or four meals to eat all week long. You can spend a lot of money buying enough ingredients to cook seven different breakfasts, lunches, and dinners per week. Why not trim that down to a few different meals, each of which will be served two or three days of the week. You’ll save a lot of money and spend far less time cooking.
- Add in veggies -- Proteins (raw meat, chicken, cheese, ham, etc.) are the most expensive items in your cart. Instead of spending more on proteins to make your meals more filling, buy more vegetables to add to your meals. Add veggies into your soups and sauces, or serve salads with your steak or chicken. The high-fiber produce will help to fill you up without adding more calories to your diet!
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