It's no secret that nutrition and wellness experts like to dole out advice for eating healthfully. But it's not the advice that's lacking—it's how to find healthy options in a sea of marked-up perishables, meat, poultry and produce. Fortunately, healthy eating on a budget is possible. It just takes a little planning and creativity to find options that are affordable to you.
A guide to healthy eating on a budget
Organic produce that is out-of-season is often much lower in nutrients. It's also notoriously more expensive, as it typically travels from a warmer climate to your local grocery store. As a result, consumers may wind up purchasing out-of-season, or conventional produce, which might be treated with pesticides to maintain a "fresh," colorful appearance. For a conscious individual, like yourself and your client, this is not a desired option. So, what can you do to make your dollar go even further when the item you want is out-of-season?
According to Rodale's Organic Life, you should opt for the frozen aisle. If you prefer to eat only fresh produce, pay close attention to weekly sales at your local grocery store or farmers market. One of the best ways to stay informed of weekly sales is to subscribe to your favorite grocery store's or co-op's online newsletter. Doing so will keep you up to date with promotions, daily savings and recipe inspiration.
Another way to maximize your dollar is to grow your own fresh fruits and vegetables. Not only is it cost-effective, but it's one of the best ways to guarantee that there aren't any lurking pesticides on your food. If you're new to gardening, simply start small and plant a few of your favorite, low-maintenance fruits or vegetables.
Now for the fun part: Shopping! We've compiled a list of some of our favorite essentials to get your client started. The list below is enough to get your client through a full work week feeling healthy, satisfied and ready to conquer his or her new lifestyle. While each item is worth every penny, we've generally found these healthy items to be more reasonably priced and budget-friendly.
Budget friendly items your client can enjoy all workweek long
- 1 tub of Fage greek yogurt
- 1/2 dozen eggs
- 1 loaf of Ezekiel bread
- Bob's Red Mill organic rolled oats
- 2 avocados
- 1 carton of blueberries
- 5 Kind or Lara bars
- 1 bag of baby carrots
- 1 container of hummus
- 1 bunch of Bananas
- 1 pound of apples
- 1 jar of natural peanut or almond butter
- Ezekiel tortilla wraps
- 1 bag of spinach
- 1 head of kale
- 5 beets
- 1/2 pound of walnuts
- Chickpeas and mustard for a dressing mash
- 1 large red onion
- 1 box of quinoa
- 1 box of whole grain pasta
- 5 boneless chicken breasts or 1 box of tofu
- 1 jar of organic soup
- 1 box of quinoa
- 2 sweet potatoes