Eating Well On A Budget
A nutritious diet can be expensive to maintain, but so can eating poor diet. It all comes down to how you approach it. To make eating a nutritious diet easier for you I have put together my top tips for how I manage to eat well while still sticking to a budget. These are things that have worked for me that I hope will be helpful to all of you.
- Find a local farmers market near you. I always try and get all of my fresh produce from the markets as not only is it fresher but is also generally cheaper than getting it from the supermarket. It's also so great to support local growers within your community and it enables you to learn a bit about where your produce comes from.
- Buy seasonally. Choose fruits and vegetables that are in season. They are generally cheaper than imported produce and will also generally be more nutrient dense as they are able to ripen in their natural environment. For example you could buy an imported green mango for something like $7 or you could buy a bag of organic oranges and a few ripe organic kiwi fruit for a similar price. By choosing the second option you get more produce for the same price and it will probably taste much better as well as being better for you.
- Buy your wholefood staples first and extras only if you have spare. I love superfoods like acai, cacao and maqui however they are not a necessity and can be very expensive. Therefore I only buy them if I have money leftover after I have bought my essentials like fresh produce, grains, legumes, organic meats, dairy/ sustainably caught seafood. I see them as a treat rather than an essential part of my weekly grocery haul.
- If you eat animal products choose smaller cuts/ amounts of meats, dairy, eggs and seafood (quality over quantity). Animal products are generally relatively expensive in relation to plant foods so I find basing my diet around an abundance of plant foods (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes etc.) makes it a lot cheaper. Therefore, if you do buy meat, dairy, and seafood try and opt for smaller cuts of high quality organic, free range products as doing this is not only cheaper but you also know the products you are buying are of good quality.
- Grow your own veggie patch/ have your own pet chickens. Having a big veggie patch at home saves me a lot of money, there are so many veggies that are so easy to grow like silver beet, potatoes, kale, spinach, broccoli, tomatoes and they are all so good for you! By learning to garden you not only have fresh organic produce on hand when you need it but also it makes putting a meal together so much more satisfying knowing you grew the vegetables yourself. Another tip, if you eat eggs is having your own pet chickens if you have the room. This way you will never have to buy eggs and know that your eggs come from well treated animals with a good diet.
I hope these tips were helpful! I would love to hear some of your thoughts on this topic, how you manage to stick to a budget while still eating a nutrient dense, healthy and sustainable diet.