Eating Healthy on a Budget

One of the most common excuses for not eating healthy is cost. Many believe that eating healthy cannot be done cost effectively. This belief is a myth that must be exposed in order for more people to get healthy and lose weight. It is time to move away from the dollar menus at fast-food restaurants and into a better caliber of eating.

Eating healthy on a budget can be done if you have the right tips at hand and know what you are doing. Below is an effective guide to eating healthy on a budget and you won’t have to sacrifice money for quality.

1. Stock up on Beans and Lentils - Dry beans and lentils are very inexpensive and both can be stretched for more than one meal. Beans can be used to make healthy and hearty soups the entire family will love. Lentils can be mixed with fresh vegetables or brown rice and made into a casserole or quality dinner meal.

2. Make Homemade Soup - soups are convenient, cheap and nutritious. Canned soups and those that come in packets are expensive and can’t be stretched. Homemade soups made with fresh herbs and vegetables are great for the heart and wallet.

3. Opt for whole-grain pasta - Whole grain pasta is healthy and can be purchased in bulk at low prices. Dry pasta does not go bad and can sit on the shelf for years. Whole wheat pasta is the healthiest choice. There are a wide variety of pastas that are great for soups and casseroles.

4. Buy Fresh Fruit and Vegetables?? - Fresh fruits and veggies can be purchased at a local Farmer’s Market for dirt cheap prices. Frozen veggies are great to have on hand, but buying fresh can be cheaper and better for you,

5. Supply the Shelves with Tuna Fish?? - Instead of buying expensive fish types, such as mackerel or halibut, stick to tuna. Tuna fish in the pouches is healthy and inexpensive. Tuna salads are a great way to mix up the pouch and prepare a healthy lunch.

6. Buy Non-Perishables in Bulk?? - Buying items in bulk is always less expensive than buying single items. Healthy and non-perishable items can be purchased in bulk. These items include dried beans and lentils, whole grains and oats, and even meat. Meat, whole grain breads, and even low-fat organic milk may be purchased in bulk and frozen until you are ready to use them. Instead of buying one loaf of whole grain bread, buy two and keep one in the freezer.

7. Use Inexpensive Cuts of Meat?? - Rather than prime cut steaks, shop for inexpensive cuts that can be added to soups and casseroles. Some meat is marked down a day or two before it expires. These meats can be bought and cooked right away to take full advantage of the price cut.

8. Don’t Dine Out - ??Dining out is more expensive than and not as healthy as the meals that can be prepared at home. Portions are larger and meals contain much more sodium and fat than those prepared in your own kitchen. If you are looking to save money on food, dining out must be cut from the budget.

9. Coupon Shop for Staples?? - Specials on staples should be watch out for. Some stores offer coupons for broth, pasta, rice, bread, meat and even milk. Staples are food that is used frequently and for a variety of meals. Most staples, other than dairy, can be kept for lengthy periods of time. Some staples may be frozen and eaten months down the road.

10. Cook with Leftovers in Mind - ??Cooking with leftovers in mind means that whatever you make, you will have extra left over for the next day. Healthy casseroles and stews make great leftovers and are cheap to make. Rice and vegetable casseroles and chicken or beef stews are good to have on hand and make great lunches the following day.

Suzanne Somers

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