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Healthy Eating Tips that Don’t Cost a Lot

Healthy Eating Tips that Don’t Cost a Lot

Whether you’re out of work as a result of the coronavirus pandemic or you simply cringe when you see food prices increasing due to lower supply and higher demand, you may feel like it’s harder than ever to stick to a healthy eating plan.

But the good news is you can still serve your family healthy meals and snacks without going over your budget – you just have to give meal planning a bit more thought than usual. And there’s good incentive to do so because it’s never been more important to eat healthy.

Eating foods rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants is good for you in more ways than you may realize. Healthy foods help protect against chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer. And they may also help boost your immune system – which helps better protect you from COVID-19 and other illnesses. A selection of healthy food, eaten in moderation, can also help you avoid weight gain, which is also good for your health.

Here are 10 healthy eating tips that won’t break the bank:

  1. Plan. Sit down once a week to plan meals and snacks. Look at what you already have in the house and what’s on sale and plan meals around those items.
  2. Cook. Even when you buy more expensive ingredients, it’s usually cheaper to eat a home-cooked meal than to buy convenience foods at the store or grab a meal out.
  3. Make a list. If you head to the store with a list of what you need – and stick to it – you’ll be less tempted to make impulse purchases, which can blow your budget.
  4. Buy in-season. In-season produce is usually cheaper and tastes better.
  5. Use store brands. Most grocers sell products with their own label that taste just as good and are just as nutritious as name-brand food manufacturers but cost less.
  6. Stock up. When items you use are on sale, stock up but only if they have a long shelf life and they’re something you use.
  7. Find bargains. Look for discounted fresh food nearing its expiration date, but only buy if you can use or freeze it before it goes bad.
  8. Start from scratch. Convenience is expensive so buy unprocessed foods when possible. A bag of brown rice or dry beans costs less than flavored boxes of rice or beans – and they’re usually healthier, too.
  9. Compare honestly. When you add up how much you pay for unhealthy foods like soda, cookies, chips and frozen pizza, you’ll likely find it’s cheaper to buy real food than junk food.
  10. Eat more plants. Eating plant-based protein instead of meat a few times a week can save you some serious cash. A pound of lean ground beef costs about $6.00, while the same amount of tofu costs about $2.50 and a can of beans is usually under a dollar.

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