Clean Eating on a Budget

Good Morning Fitfam!

One of the biggest things discouraging people from jumping on the healthy eating bandwagon is the cost.  Why do you think fast food and junk food is so overly consumed by people everyday?  It’s cheap, it’s affordable, it’s fast and convenient.

True, fast/junk food is cheaper, but what is the price you are paying on your body.  How much are you paying for that gym membership because the pounds are packing onto your thighs?  How much do those prescriptions cost that the doctor is giving you to help with your heartburn, diabetes, sleep apnea, etc?  Are you full after your meal or are you hungry 30 minutes later?

Now, I’m not saying that you will never find me inside of a McDonalds or KFC, I mean Mucho Burrito is my weakness, but I don’t make a habit out of eating out.  Instead I try to make the majority of my meals at home each week.

Yes, it does cost a bit more, especially when money is tight, but there are some clever ways to reduce your costs while still eating clean.

Produce:

Vegetables and Fruit are one of the staples when it comes to healthy eating.  Whenever you are looking at starting a diet, the first thing anyone ever says to you is to eat more vegetables and fruit.  However with the different types of weather affecting all different parts of the world, produce that is being shipped from areas far away can often cost a lot at different times of the year.

First off, if you are going to buy fresh produce, eat whatever is in season.  This will also help keep your meals exciting because the flavours and foods you’re eating will change with each season.

If you’re like me however, and are a picky eater who likes a core group of vegetables, opt for frozen.  Vegetables that are frozen actually have more nutrients then the fresh ones in the produce aisle.  They are frozen mere minutes after they are picked, locking in those amazing nutrients, and they are a lot cheaper!  For example, you could buy a crown of broccoli for $1.20 or you could buy a 1kg package of frozen broccoli that probably has the equivalent of 2 or 3 crowns for $1.20 – $1.50.

Meat:

A couple of suggestions for all of you meat eaters out there.  Now I love my protein!  I eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but I also know that it is probably my most expensive choice on my shopping bill.

Buy in bulk.  America is known for having bulk food easily available.  I’m not saying to go out and buy potato chips and chocolate bars in bulk, i’m saying if you want chicken breast, check out costco.  You can freeze the meat and it’ll last for months!

Try and get multiple meals out of one product.  You can buy an entire chicken, cook it up and then eat some of the chicken with one meal, carve off the rest and store it away for other meals like chicken salad for lunch or chicken soup.  And of course you can’t forget to boil the bones in water for a quick and easy, no chemicals added, chicken stock.  You don’t even have to use chicken stock just for soup.  Add it to anything that you want to increase the flavour in like mash potatoes.

Know what you’re using the meat for.  Why buy an expensive sirloin if you are making beef stew, instead save some dollars and buy beef brisket or braising steak that is meant to be cooked long and slow.

Those are just a couple of tips, I will definitely post more in future blogs.

Just remember the cost of the food now could say you way more money in the future in terms of your bodies own health.

fruits-and-vegetables                      HealthyBudgetEating

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2 thoughts on “Clean Eating on a Budget

  1. This is so awesome, thanks for posting!

    I’ve actually found that by taking my lunch to work every day instead of getting fast food I’m saving a ton of money! I can bulk make a meal for $1/serving and have enough to last a week.

    My personal favourite use for chicken stock is to cook rice in it rather than using water. It adds loads of flavour and makes the dish more interesting!

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