One of the most common excuse for not eating a healthy diet is that healthy eating is too expensive. But contrary to what a lot of people think, eating a healthy and balanced diet is possible even on a tight budget. In addition to this, by eating healthy, one can avoid the high costs of medications and hospital bills that may be caused by chronic diseases resulting from poor diet, such as obesity, heart diseases, diabetes, and cancer. Here are a few practical tips on how you can start healthy eating on a budget.
Stock on Whole Foods
Recent studies show that consuming whole foods is the best way to attain good health and prevent diseases. With whole foods, their natural fiber, phytochemicals, and essential nutrients are still intact, unlike processed foods.
Buy Frozen Fruits and Veggies Instead of Fresh Ones
Frozen fruits and vegetables are usually half the price of fresh ones, and they even have a longer shelf life so you can buy them in bulk and store them in the freezer for several weeks. Frozen produce also help you save time, as these have already pre-washed and pre-cut.
Opt for Calorie-Dense Foods
Calorie-dense foods are high in calories, or energy, so you consume less food as a result because you feel satisfied a lot faster compared to when eating foods that have less calories. Examples of calorie-dense foods are whole milk, oats, rice, pasta, and potatoes–which are not just filling but are very tasty, too.
Buy Cheaper Meat Cuts
Protein is essential in building and maintaining muscle. In fact, eating whole protein every meal can help in fat loss. One practical tip when buying meat is to choose cheaper meat cuts like on the bone or whole chicken and offal meats. Other examples of cheap protein are milk, whey, eggs, and frozen chicken breast.
Avoid Impulse Buying
Before you to and buy your groceries, make sure to write a list of everything you need to buy and stick to that list. Having a list helps to make sure that you do not buy other items on the shelves on impulse. For physiotherapy patients suffering from certain diseases, it is crucial to stick to a specific diet and a list is always helpful to ensure that they follow their recommended diet.
Prepare Your Own Meals
Instead of buying food outside, it is best to prepare your own meals. This way, you are sure to eat only healthy food and you also save a lot of money in the process. Don’t know how to cook? Thanks to the internet, you can easily perform an online search and watch video tutorials on how to prepare healthy meals online.
Taking the first step to eating can be very challenging, but always keep in mind that it is the best way to improving your health. And as you can see, eating healthy food is not really expensive or complicated. All you need to do is to start planning and mindful sourcing. Remember, you are what you eat!
Tim Ellis is the Principal Physiotherapist at Excel Physiotherapy and Wellness in Mascot, New South Wales, Australia. He specialises in treating complex necks and backs and developing highly effective exercise programs for his patients. Tim is committed to integrative health, healthy eating, exercise, and life long learning which he shares through his blogs.