To achieve any type of fitness goal whether it's to improve your running ability, increase muscle size or lose stubborn body fat, it is likely to require lots of healthy foods. What is not likely is that your salary is rising at the same rate as the cost of food. I imagine avocados are probably going to come with a security tag on them soon!
The aim of this article is to help you to be able to eat healthily whilst on a budget. The first rule of eating on a budget is to actually set yourself a budget and stick to it! So many times I've found myself seeing something on offer and buying it in fear that I'll never get this chance again. However, if you stick to a budget and only take the cash you feel is needed, you won't give yourself that option.
My second rule is to shop no more than once a week and buy in bulk. Meats especially can seem expensive to buy, making it even less likely to hit those all-important protein targets. But buying in bulk can be a big help, and furthermore it encourages you to stick to your food plan. If it's cooked and waiting for you in the fridge it will deter you from grabbing a café lunch.
Next try to buy calorie dense food. If you're not satisfied after a meal, you end up just eating more. Whole milk compared to low fat milk is a good example, whilst the low fat, high sugar vs low sugar, high fat argument continues on, we know for sure that the full cream milk will keep you satisfied for longer, leading to less cravings.
One thing we are consistently happy to buy is bottled water. If you spend $4 a day on bottled water for one year it equates to $208, doesn't seem that much I guess for a year. But when we have fresh and clean drinking water in NSW it seems a bit excessive, even if you're the extra cautious type, a water bottle with a flitter is only $15 or so.
My last tip to save money whilst maintaining a healthy shopping list is to avoid impulse buying. Going shopping whilst in a hungry state or even worse, in a 'Hangry' state (hungry & angry), can be detrimental to your stomach and your wallet. Always Eat Before You Shop! If you go in hungry, it'll almost seem as if the sugar has formed an imaginary friend/enemy and is leaping out at you from the shelves. Shop alone too, influences from the kids/partner can be damaging. Leave them at home.
P.s Log onto the Vision Food Diary, plan your meals for the week, then add up the total amounts for your shopping list. If you know you're going to need a treat that week, work it into your food plan and into your budget. Easy way to be guilt free and stay sane!
*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.