One very popular reason people give for not eating healthy is that eating healthy is simply too expensive.
I am going to show you how with a little planning and by implementing new system of healthier eating, you can actually save money.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2014, the average American household spent $2,787 on restaurant meals and takeout, compared to $3,971 on groceries. In 2015, the average amount spent on restaurants and takeout jumped $221 to $3,008. Grocery spending, by contrast, increased just $44 per household to $4,015. What this tells us is that dining at restaurants and ordering takeout aren’t just luxuries anymore. Rather, they’re becoming the norm.
From 2015 to 2016, for the first time in history, Americans spent more money at bars and restaurants ($54.857 billion) than they did on groceries ($52.503 billion).
Here, I will show you how you can eat green without spending extra green. In fact, I believe that you will be able to not only afford to eat healthier, but also be able to squeeze in your monthly supplements without going over budget.
With a little planning and discipline, you will feel great without breaking the bank.
Food markets are set up to make you spend more by toying with your 5 senses and initiating those impulse buys. Items are strategically place to lure you into their grips through appealing marketing.
The only way to insure that you will not fall victim to their schemes, is by having a well thought out plan as to what you are there for and by sticking to it.
Your meal plan for the week should include, quick breakfast items for in the morning, and sensible lunches, snacks, and dinners. This will save time, money, and extra inches on your waist line.
Remember that you and/or your family’s schedule is unique, and you will want to consider, prep time, possible food allergies, convenience, and personal favorites.
For instance, if there isn’t any time in the morning to cook breakfast, a quick protein shake in a to go cup, pre made hard-boiled egg, or a quality protein bar trumps a pop tart, donuts, or drive thru breakfast sandwich any day of the week. Also, as convenient as they might be, school cafeterias unfortunately are not the place to find health. With budget cuts, government regulation, and simply the lack of quality ingredients, our school lunches are failing our children. In the higher grades, cafeterias are full of fast food restaurant options that are not only costly, but very unhealthy.
By using reusable containers and water bottles, you CAN afford to keep the whole family full, happy, and healthy.
- Make healthy snacks and food options available, in sight, and easy to grab and go. Purchase smaller boxes when you are finding favorites so nothing goes to waste. Try to keep a variety and mix things up so no one gets bored.
- Keep a decorative bowl or container filled with options of quality protein bars on the kitchen counter.
- Pre wash, separate and cut fruit and vegies to encourage them to be eaten as snacks. Have small containers for dressings or vegies dips.
- Buy containers of mixed greens to use for to go salads. Add a piece of protein (possibly from leftovers) or a can of tuna for a healthy lunch. Toss in a bag of mixed nuts and a fruit or vegie option for snacks throughout the day.
- Keep a few protein bars with you and in bags if you get stuck in traffic or in route to eliminate the need for drive through stops.
- ALWAYS pack water. The body’s need for water is often disguised and mistaken as hunger. Stay hydrated and never be caught without food.
- Store items and options for packed lunches together to minimize hassle and confusion. Place bars and snacks intended for lunches in a separate bag or container for the upcoming week to insure you don’t run out.
This will save both time and money eliminating extra runs to the store during the week.
- Purchase items from online and in retail discount stores or buy in bulk:
- Thrive Market
- Costco / Other Member Store
Stay on budget: shop with a meal plan and grocery list
- Follow this link for a Grocery Budget List. Omit or add items / edit purchase price from receipts / Items total amount will appear in total column when a unit number is present in quantity.
This is a great way to stay on budget and keep track of the best places and prices for foods. Especially those higher priced quality food items. There are so many options to purchase online with free shipping. For items that you frequently use, you can even save more by setting up auto shipments, and have them delivered right to your door without even thinking about them.
Systems and planning work! They add value to life, free up finances and time. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive.