With the new year right around the corner, it seems everyone’s resolution is health related. When it comes to living a healthier live, eating healthy seems to be the first thing we tackle. Whether you’re concerned about your health or want to drop a few pounds, here are 9 budget friendly tips to start eating healthier.
- Plan your meals: One of the most important things we can do is to meal plan. This can be a big money saver, look at the weekly ads and coupons to see what deals are out there. By planning your meals you eliminate wasting food or it spoiling before you can eat it.
- Farmer’s Market: The first thing we think of when eating healthier is more fruits and vegetables. Shopping fresh produce can be expensive and turns people away from a healthier lifestyle. Try shopping your local farmer’s market. Farmer’s markets are usually cheaper than any grocery store along with being a healthier pesticide free option.
- Buy frozen: Don’t shy away from saving money when buying frozen fruits or vegetables. Studies have shown that frozen veggies have just as many nutrients as fresh. Frozen vegetables are picked at their peak and frozen for our convenience.
- Grow your own: Not everyone has a green thumb or a yard for a garden full of fresh fruits and vegetables but by using our scraps we can easily grow new fruits and vegetables in the comfort of our kitchen. Here’s a great website that shows you 25 foods that you can re-grow from kitchen scraps and how to do so.
- Shop in season: If you’re someone who loves the taste of fresh produce the best way to save money is to stock up. In season produce is cheaper than produce that has been shipped from other areas to make it into your grocery store. Once home, wash and freeze for later use.
- Stop buying sodas: One of the biggest ways to save money, trim your waist line and be healthier is to drop the canned drinks. Sodas are expensive and there’s no nutritional value. Along with sodas, store bought juices are another item we need to nix. A lot of juices you find in the store are packed full of sugar and sweeteners that can only cause more damage to our health. If you aren’t into water there are other alternatives like tea, coffee (yes it does have health benefits), or juices that have 100% fruit juice with no added sugar.
- Buy whole foods: Although buying whole foods may mean a little work from us, in the long wrong it can save money. Grab block cheese over pre-shredded, dry beans in lieu of canned, and dry oats not only are a better option than cereal but also cheaper per serving. Don’t let convenience get the best of you and opt for items that seem easier.
- Forget the junk: I don’t think this is one that I need to elaborate too much on. Plain and simple stop eating junk. We all know that processed food is unhealthy (and expensive.) By cutting this out you will have extra money in your budget to put towards healthier options.
- Stop eating out: This is probably the hardest for most people. We all have those days where picking something up or going out seems easier than cooking and cleaning after a long day. When we eat out we tend to forgo our healthy eating habits. We tell ourselves we’ll eat better tomorrow or “this is my cheat day” but then we get in the habit of making excuses and fall back into our old ways.
So when you make that New Year’s Resolution next year, keep these simple changes in mind to lead a healthier lifestyle and save a little money in the process.
This post was written by Ami Haines, FTWCCU employee.