It’s expensive to eat healthy on a budget right? Wrong! It is entirely possible to follow a healthy diet even on a tight budget. With a little bit of planning and by following these tips below, you and your family will get all the nutrition you need without breaking the bank.
Skip the meat
Curbing your appetite for red meat is a sure way to cut your grocery bill since red meat in South Africa is an expensive luxury. Chicken, eggs, nuts and beans are protein sources that are cheaper and also much healthier.
Ever heard of meatless Monday? Why not consider having one (or two) meatless meals per week and experiment with vegetarian options. Vegetable proteins like beans and lentils are inexpensive, easy to prepare, nutritious and also taste good.
Never buy processed and tinned meats like polony and viennas. They are expensive and high in sodium and fat which makes them unhealthy. Rather opt for tinned fish or left over chicken for salads and sandwiches.
Buy produce in season and in bulk
If you want to eat a healthy diet, don’t cut down on your fruit and veg intake. Make sure you get your 5 – 7 portions a day by buying what’s in season. When buying in season, you’ll find fruit and veg to be much cheaper, and they taste better as well.
Another way to save money is to buy fresh produce in bulk from the market and share with friends or family.
Steer clear of canned fruit and vegetables since they tend to be more expensive, and they often have a high sugar content.
Prepare and cook your food
Homemade food is much cheaper and healthier than ready made meals and takeaways. Plan your week’s menu in advance and buy accordingly so you can take advantage of weekly specials.
By making a shopping list, it will help you to avoid unnecessary items. Another thing to keep in mind is never to go grocery shopping when you are hungry as you are more likely to stray from your shopping list.
By using unprocessed products, you can save money as well. Pre-prepared items such as cut veggies and grated cheese are often more expensive. Buying a whole chicken will also save you money since it’s cheaper per kilogram. You can easily cut it into pieces yourself.
Start a veggie garden
Starting a vegetable garden is an excellent way to grow healthy produce and save money when shopping. You don’t need to have a lot of space since Tomatoes, lettuce, green beans, peppers and fresh herbs grow particularly well in containers.
With these tips, you will be able not only to eat healthily but save money while you’re at it.