8 tips for eating healthy on a budget


By: Natalie Cacciatore, Health and Lifestyle Coach at BAM! BAM! BODY Special to the Boca and Delray newspapers
1. Buy your produce at its peak: Fruits and veggies that are in season are typically less expensive and generally higher quality. You can ask the produce manager what is currently “in season” and they will point you in the right direction. However, it’s usually obvious since the produce that is in season is usually on sale and in high supply.
2. Make food from scratch: A little extra time in the kitchen can save you money. When you buy foods already prepared you are paying someone else for that extra step in the process. Shred your own lettuce, chop up your own carrots, roast a chicken over the weekend and shred it up to use throughout the week rather than buying prepackaged or prepared foods.
3. Leftovers: When you make a meal, try to double or triple up on the ingredients so you have enough left over for multiple lunches and dinners. It saves you time and your time is money, honey! Our meal plans are big into leftovers. It is key for eating healthy with a busy lifestyle.
4. Buy in bulk: Try to buy all your nonperishable items in bulk. Costco, Sam’s Club, or even the Whole Foods Market has the “bulk section” where you can get a better price on foods purchased in larger quantities. If you have a large family, then you can even buy perishable items in bulk as well.
5. Use a shopping list: We promise you that if you go grocery shopping without a list of exactly what you will need for the week, then you will end up impulsively buying things that probably shouldn’t end up in your shopping cart. It’s also not a good idea to go shopping when you are really hungry as you may end up buying a lot of extra food that you did not plan for.
6. Go meatless: Don’t worry, your body does not need meat every single day. Eat plant based proteins on those days instead and pocket some cash to use for better produce.
7. Become a patio farmer: If you can grow flowers and plants in your yard then you can certainly grow some herbs, tomatoes and veggies. You will be amazed at how delicious fresh produce can taste. An added benefit besides the cost savings is the amazing feeling you will experience from eating food that you produced. There are many books and online resources available to help you grow your own food if you don’t know how. So get started! It will be a fun project.
8. Use your freezer: Freeze your leftover food or excess produce that will spoil if you won’t be able to consume it. Then you can use it at a later time instead of wasting it. When you find berries or veggies on sale, take advantage of the savings and buy extra to freeze for a later date.
Natalie Cacciatore is a serial entrepreneur and organic lifestyle coach with more than 15 years in the health and wellness arenas. Her company, BAM! BAM! BODY, is a nutrition and fitness management company dedicated to coaching its clients towards lifestyle transformations through intense education and nutrition refinement. For more information, please visit: www.mybambambody.com.