Eating healthy is not rocket science.
No, it’s not!
"What is it, then? Why does it seem so impractical?" This was actually a question someone asked me, and I feel like I own to you and myself to explain different ways you can achieve healthy eating even if you are on a super low budget.
Therefore, I am particularly excited about today’s blog post, woop! Woop!😁 Without further ado, let’s break it down. Here are 31 ways to eat healthy on a super low budget all year round:
1. Have a grocery shopping budget. The notion that “budget” is for bigger companies are not true. Create a grocery budget for yourself or your household and know exactly how much are going to be spending on grocery. It will save you a load of headaches.
2. Create a meal plan. How else do you know what you are going to be eating? Start with a 7-day meal plan, and move up to 30. Avoid the chaos that comes with not knowing what to eat and then ending up with a lousy choice aka fast food. Grab my free overnight oat recipe and intentionally plan out your breakfasts.☺️
3. Write down all your favorite healthy foods. Then incorporate them in your grocery list/shopping. I bet there are some foods you love love love! Buy them. Cook them. Make them your way. Yum!😋
4. Don’t go to the grocery store on an empty stomach. When you go grocery shopping on a hungry stomach, you are more likely to pick up unhealthy snacks. Click To Tweet
5. Shop Farmer's Markets for fresh produce. (BTW check out my farmer's market salad here.) Consider buying food products such as onions, tomatoes, pepper, and potatoes, from farmers market rather than the grocery store. I usually buy a big box of fresh tomatoes about $13 - $15.00 at restaurant depot. That same quantity would be about $100.00 or more in a regular grocery store. YIKES! 😳
6. Shop frozen produce. They are equally great and can save you some money. If you love smoothie as I do then, do not be afraid to buy frozen fruits. Such as strawberries, blueberries, mangos, raspberries, peaches, and many other frozen fruits you can use for smoothies.
7. Shop generic instead of brand-name food item. I love me some store brand or generic. Moreover, they are economical compared to the name brands.
9. Shop at reasonably low-cost grocery stores such as Aldi, Walmart, Kroger, and some others. Do not hesitate to shop some household products, party shenanigans, or even hair decoration stuff (obviously if you are into that) at the dollar store. Who really cares if your party balloons are from dollar tree? I wouldn't care at all! And am sure most of your party guests won't either!
10. Buy fruits and vegetables that are in season and possibly freeze. I love buying tomatoes and bell peppers in large quantities, wash and then freeze. You can do the same with more seasonal fruits such as strawberry, blueberry, mango, pineapple, etc.
11. Use store loyalty cards. This is a must do, I suggest you register and secure member cards for all the stores you shop from. By the same token, some store loyalty cards will cost some money such as Costco, BJ’s, Sam’s Club or even amazon prime.
12. Use cash instead of a card when grocery shopping. You are more likely to be mindful of how much you are spending when you shop with cash vs. shopping with a bankcard or credit card.
13. Utilize bulk bin and get groceries in bulk. For those grocery products that your family love and eat, why not buy them in bulk. Some stores like Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, etc., all have bulk bins. Take advantage of it.
14. Keep your eyes on sales. At the same time be sure not to buy any and everything that is on sale. Even when items are on sale, it’s imperative to buy what you only need.
15. Make an intentional decision not to eat junk by not buying junk on shopping day. The best way to not eat junk is not to buy junk. It is easier to avoid when you do not have it in your pantry. Click To Tweet
16. Invest in a good blender or smoothie maker. Everyone including you knows that smoothie is a great way to eat healthily. At the same token, buying smoothies from a smoothie shop is not the ideal way to go. When you have a smoothie maker, you are in control.
17. Take your own food to work including snacks. In reality, taking your own food to work does not only allow you to eat healthy, it also saves you some money.
18. Cook your food. In order to be in control of the calories in the food that you are eating it is essential to make them yourself. Indeed, it’s hard to cook 100% of all the food you eat but cook more often. Cooking 65% of what you eat is a great start. On the other hand, endeavor to always know the calorie count of the foods you didn't make, for instance when you are ordering in restaurants, know the calorie count or go the extra mile and ask.
19. Cook in batches or large portions. When you cook in batches, you save time. It is like working up front. This is particularly important for some foods that take long to cook. Such as stews, oxtail, chicken gizzard, etc., And equally for make-ahead foods likes beans, moi-moi, and soups.
20. Buy meat in bulk. Love it or not, meat is essential to your daily diet. In order words, it is crucial to include it in your dishes. So therefore instead of buying meats in tiny amounts, which were more expensive, trust me meat is one of the foods that can quickly skyrocket your grocery list. Find a way to buy in bulk, however before you buy meat in bulk ensure that you have freezer space for it. Alternatively, you can invest in a small deep freezer. That was what I did.
21. Drink more water. Eating healthy does get any better with water. Water is good and is life. Without adequate water in your body, you could become hydrated.
22. Add more fiber to your diet. To put it another way, fill up with fiber! Ensure to eat more natural fiber from your diet instead of taking fiber tablets or shakes. Foods like beans, lentils, broccoli, avocado, mango, chickpea, banana, chia seeds are sure to give you tons of fiber.
23. Substitute your burger bun or bread with lettuce wraps. Frequently, indulging in burgers and sandwiches is probably not what you want to do if you desire to eat healthy. Think of substituting this meal with healthier lettuce wraps. Also think of other foods you can substitute.
24. Use more of fresh fruits than dried ones. It is important to realize that dried fruits have calories than their fresh counterparts. For instance say, grapes; fresh grapes have lesser calories than dried grapes aka raisins. The same goes for fresh vs. dried cranberries. When you are adding these dried fruits to your morning cereals or oats or breakfast parfaits, do not go overboard.
25. Look into legumes. Beans and lentils are lovely to the body; moreover, they can fill you up quickly. Both beans and lentils are great legumes to start with.
26. Use more fish. From time to time substitute red meat with fish. Most types of fish are cheaper than beef except salmon, and most kids love it, well my children do.
27. Eggs are equally great protein you use to replace beef. If you want to go leaner, then use egg white. Personally, I love using eggs to eat my salad instead of meat, sometimes.
28. Drink a glass of water before each meal. This helps you to fill up quickly, so it automatically prevents you from overeating. Most times when I drink enough water before and after a meal, I wave bye to the desert. (Which I don’t need anyway:)
29. Eat only when you are hungry. Maybe this should read “eat only when you are hungry for food.” This is because sometimes you could actually be hungry for water.
30. Read food labels. One serving means one serving. Ok, who hasn’t been guilty of eating more than “one serving”? I will be the first to raise my hand. However, one serving means one serving, read your food labels and know exactly how much quantity you are supposed to eat. This rule is vital if you intend to eat healthy or stay healthy.
31. Buy a scale and use measuring cups. These would help you to take the guesswork out of your kitchen tables. Easily know how much you are cooking or serving.
Now, it is your turn. What are your healthy eating ways? New techniques wouldn’t hurt, I love learning.
And if you have enjoyed this post, please share! And if you need help with starting out your healthy eating journey check out our recipes.