Monday, April 4, 2011

Shopping for Health AND Budget

It can be really difficult to purchase foods that are healthy and still stay within our budgets.  It seems like the better the food is for you, like Organics, the more expensive it is!  But there are some some ways you can still eat healthy without breaking the budget! 

Oatmeal is one of the healthiest choices you can make because it's a whole grain and has no added salts, fats or sugars.  The same goes for shredded wheat!
100% whole grain is always the healthiest choice.  
Tip: Stock up on items when they go on sale then freeze them.  
Tip: Even though Grits are not a whole grain, they are economical and low in calorie density.

Canned Goods:
Try to stick with items that say no salt added or reduced sodium.  
Tip: Stock up on store brands when on sale because they are the best value!
Tip: Be on the look out for coupons or great BOGO or 10 for $10 deals that usually go with canned goods.

Rice is a very inexpensive option that is also low in calorie density when cooked.  Brown rice is best but white isn't that bad either if that's all your family will eat. Spaghetti is also a quick and inexpensive way to feed the family.
Tip: Look for sales on store brands and stock up!  

My Pyramid calls for most people to eat 4 and a half cups of fruit and vegetables each day.  It's best to eat fruit that is fresh and in season.  The more colorful the fruit or vegetable, the better it is for you.
Tip: Check out your local Farmer's Market, a road-side stand or even a flea market for the best prices on produce just make sure that you check and thoroughly wash your fruits and veggies before you eat them.
Tip: Keep an eye out for the grocery stores to have sales on produce to get great deals.  Items in season give you the best deal.
Tip: Fruits and vegetables tend to go bad quickly so don't buy more than what you'll need in the next couple days because it will just go to waste, unless you plan on cooking it.

When it comes to proteins choose lean, cook lean and use portion control.  
Tip: You can buy most meats in bulk and use some now, freeze the rest and save it for later!
Tip: Turkey can cost less than chicken.
Tip: Beans cost less than meat and are really good for you!  Try baked beans, fat free refried beans, or kidney beans!  They're full of fiber!
Tip: If you don't have a lot of time you can use lentils!

Beware the pitfalls of drinking too much soda pop, sugar filled juices or eating chips, cereals, cookies, crackers and all the other "junk food" that are full of calories and horrible for you.  If possible limit your intake to just one per week.  Just don't buy them!
Don't go shopping without a list
Don't go shopping when hungry
Don't go shopping with other family members if they try to influence you to purchase too much junk food.

Instead try out pretzels, animal crackers, popcorn, vanilla wafers, and other healthier food options.  I'm a sucker for mint chocolate chip ice cream! Everything in moderation.  Here is a yummy recipe I found for Tortilla Pizza I decided to share!  Enjoy!

Tortilla Pizza
1 flour tortilla
Pizza sauce
Reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
Favorite pizza toppings such as
tomatoes, skinless grilled chicken,
green peppers, onion and mushrooms
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put pizza sauce, toppings and cheese on flour tortilla.
Bake in oven for about 10 to 15 minutes. Add a side salad with reduced-fat dressing and
a piece of fruit for dessert and you have a meal with 4 of the 5 food groups.


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1 comment:

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