You don't have to break your bank to eat healthy. Nutritious eating, can be sometimes or i can say at most times, challenging on your pocket. Now with so many superfoods coming everyday and to eat the instagram perfect meal we often struggle with our budget.
So here we are with 7 hacks on how to get your max nutrition dense food in your budget. Just a little planning and mindful eating will save you a lot of buck and stress.
Always aim to buy seasonal fruits and vegetables. They are generally higher in their nutritional benefit than the off season. Buying off seasonally is not only a hassle on your budget but can be a little harmful for your body. Producers often added chemical life sulfur dioxide to prevent fruits and vegetables from going bad.
Moreover you get to experiment with a lot of variety and get a lot of benefit from them. Few fruits and vegetables I personally like for winter are Cabbage, swedes ( can be a very good replacement for potato), and parsnip. Some summer options can be tomato, mango, eggplant.
Buy from local farmer’s market
Support your local producer and ditch the supermarket. Farmer’s markets generally have the most affordable and fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables. I do understand that the farmers market may not be a very fancy place or sometimes not very well maintained, but it is worth a visit once a week.
Farmers generally cut the middle person commission and can give you the best price. Often, you will actually discover farmers growing superfood and offering the most affordable. I recently discovered spirulina at literally ¼ price of what you can get on the supermarket shelf.
All I am saying is maybe once in a while give a visit to the farmer market and you will be amused by the amount of money you are saving and also how fresh you are eating.
Buy off cut or alternate protein forms
Proteins, especially lean meat can be very expensive. So what can we do to incorporate high protein in our meals?
As I always believe high protein meals are generally the most sought after diet program. I personally love meat and I especially love seafood. So there are two tricks. So my personal secret hack is to arrive at the market just before closing, where they offer literally half the price or literally no price.
Maybe next time try buying a whole chicken or some off cut meat. It will need some work on your part before you can use it. Similarly, you can use alternative protein such as soya, egg, tofu, tempeh, legumes which are much affordable and will serve your protein goals,
Replacing some superfood with affordable option
It is quite trendy these days to incorporate superfood (e.g. quinoa, spirulina, etc.) in your diet. Everyday a new superfood is discovered. Nothing bad at all. But so many people are assuming that only consuming superfood will give them a very healthy and fit body.
That is not true. I am not even saying that superfood does not do what they claim, yes indeed they are a pack of nutritious benefits. But we can get similar benefits from simple fruit or plain yogurt. You can replace maca powder with some turmeric milk or matcha green tea with some fine refined green tea.
This way you will still be getting all the nutrients and still be motivated to maintain your healthy lifestyle as it wont demand half of your paycheck.
Buy in Bulk
Have you ever come across the offer 3 for $20 or 4 for $15. Often supermarkets or even your local farmer market offer discounts if you buy in bulk. This may save you a few bucks. Now you must be wondering what to do with the extras.
Oftentimes when we freeze vegetables and fruits, research shows that it actually intensifies the nutrition. More over freezing may also mean that we can use the items for a longer period of time. So this is like the double bonus not only we are saving our money but we are getting more health benefits.
Make ur own dressing and sauces
Our next and my most favourite hack is making your own dressing and sauces. I am not saying make everything seasoning and flavouring from scratch. Honestly speaking it is not even possible. You can sit in the house and make some fermented fish sauce, Right?
Who takes so much hassle? Might be demotivating.
We can try making our own batch of curry paste, mayonnaise, ranch dressing and other vinaigrette. In this way there will be less preservative, added sugar or sodium, or any sort of trans fat. Making sauces and dressing are very easy and can last months if preserved under proper conditions.
This is like a double sided sword saving you and your budget. Now your next salad will be more affordable with less harmful ingredient.
Have some healthy recipe handy for leftovers
Never waste your food. Easiest way to do it is to have a few favourite recipes handy or best if you just write it somewhere. My favourite one is fried rice. Crack some egg and left over veggies, protein and seasoning and bam one of the most delicious Fried rice.
See it is your canvas so go make your own masterpiece you add whatever in your mind and season however it tastes better to you. Go be your masterchef. This also encourages you to stick more to the healthy habit of eating home and not doing some takeaway.
These were my 7 hacks I use to live a healthy life. Super easy and super practical. Let me know what is your favourite hack on saving some pennies while eating the clean.