Eating healthy is so expensive! Or, so I hear. I’m going to share with you 10 tips to help you eat healthy on a budget. It all starts with remembering the 3 P’s – Plan, Purchase and Prepare.
Tip #1: Make a food budget
Determine your food budget. There are several tools available online that can help you create a spending plan that works. Next, figure out how much money you can spend for each trip to the store. If you shop weekly, then take your monthly food budget and divide by four. Remember to follow your food budget.
Tip #2: Plan meals
Taking the time to plan your meals ahead of time can help you save money and calories. Planning healthy meals is easier when you follow the MyPlate guidelines.
Follow these steps when planning your meals:
- Explore your cupboards and refrigerator to create a list of food items already on hand and try to include them in your meals at the beginning of the week.
- Try to incorporate the five food groups: protein, grains, fruit, vegetables, and dairy.
- Look at the weekly grocery store ads and coupons for cheaper meal ideas.
- Add stews, casseroles, or stir-fries for budget-friendly meals.
- Use beans in recipes for a few meatless meals
- Use a piece of paper, calendar, menu planning board, or app to create weekly or monthly meal plans.
Tip #3: Make a Shopping List
- Create a shopping list after you’ve planned meals by writing down the foods you need to buy and how much.
- Shop quicker by grouping items according to the store layout.
- Stick to your shopping list to help control spending and avoid impulse purchases.
- Write your list on paper, enter it into a computer program or a free mobile app.