If you are on a diet, or just want to eat healthier, it can be hard to find cheap healthy foods that will not break the bank. But worry not, this article should help you eat better without spending hundreds of dollars extra per month.
Choose Affordable Healthy Foods
First, what you need to do is choose the right foods. Choose time tested healthy foods and stay away from the latest gimmicks. While some of the trendy foods on the market might be healthy, they are almost assuredly going to be expensive. Here are some healthy foods to turn to.
The egg has been made a villain in the past, but people are starting to come to reason and learn that it is a healthy part of a diet. Eggs are a great source of protein, which is essential for weight loss. They also contain all nine essential amino acids, which will keep you feeling fuller for longer than most other protein sources.
2. Canned Tuna Fish
Canned tuna fish is inexpensive and full of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids that promote weight loss and reduce inflammation in the body. It’s also rich in vitamin D, which helps regulate metabolism and boosts mood levels to help with weight management.
Tuna fish is also low calorie, so it can be a part of your weight loss diet.Just make sure to limit consumption to no more than twice a week, due to the risk of mercury.
3. Whole Grain Bread
Whole grain bread is a great source of fiber, which can help with weight management and healthy brain function. It’s also rich in B vitamins, which are important for mood and energy levels as well as metabolism regulation.
4. Oatmeal with Fruits
Oatmeal is a great source of complex carbohydrates that will keep you feeling full and energized for longer. It’s also high in fiber, which is essential to healthy digestion and weight loss. The added fruit is a great way to help in your appetite control by adding flavor, vitamins and minerals into your oatmeal.
5. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt contains probiotics that can help to improve digestive health, lower cholesterol levels and reduce inflammation. The protein in Greek yogurt also helps keep you feeling full and energized throughout the day.
6. Boneless Chicken Breast
Yes, meat can be a part of a low cost healthy diet and there is none better than the versatile chicken breast. Full of muscle building protein and low in fat, it should be at the top of your list.
Rice is one of the cheapest meal bases that you can purchase. This is why it is one of the most popular foods in the world. You can not only make hundreds of different meals with it, but you can do so for just pennies a serving.
8. Fresh Produce
Lettuce and vegetables like zucchini, squash and cucumbers are healthy and surprisingly affordable. The trick is to buy just what you need because wastage is very common with produce.
Hacks For Saving Money On Your Meals
Okay, so we have some food choices that are healthy and relatively cheap. Now, how can we make buying them even cheaper?
1. Plan your meals in advance.
Meal planning is the act of planning the meals that you want to make in advance. You will do so for a week or two weeks at a time. The benefit is that having a plan allows you to make an accurate shopping list. You can then go grocery shopping without buying items that would be wasted. The less you waste, the more you save.
2. Buy meat in bulk and freeze it.
Meat tends to go on sale in cycles. When you catch it on sale, take advantage and stock up. Then all that you need to do is properly wrap it and freeze it for later. If properly prepped, one to two months is no problem for freezing meat.
3. Shop at farmer’s markets for seasonal produce.
Farmers markets are great for providing the freshest produce at the best prices. Without the grocery store middle man, you can dramatically save on healthy fruits and veggies.
4. Buy groceries online to save time and money.
When you shop online, you avoid the impulse buys that you might make in person at a store. This will help to save you money and avoid unhealthy snack foods from making it into your cart.
5. Eat less processed foods, like chips, cookies, or soda.
You obviously want to avoid these processed foods if you want to eat healthy, but there is another reason to avoid prepped food, it is expensive. Even healthy pre-made meals are much higher than buying the ingredients yourself and doing your own prep.
6. Drink lots of water.
Every health professional will tell you to drink more water if you want to get healthy, but it is also much cheaper than soda and juice. To really magnify your savings, switch to a refillable water bottle over plastic water bottles.
7. Make use of your leftovers.
As Americans, we throw away far too much food, when it can easily be saved and reused. Instead of throwing away your leftover food, save it and repurpose it. Make a piece of grilled chicken a chicken salad or turn a partial steak into a taco. Get creative and maximize your savings.
8. Stay away from trendy foods.
There is not need to fix what is not broken. All of the healthy foods that we are used to will fuel your body properly. Those trendy foods are untested and usually way overpriced. Stick with the basics to eat healthy on a budget.