Torn between eating healthy and sticking to your budget? There is good news—you don’t have to choose. Here are some smart ideas for enjoying the best of both worlds.
• Buy bigger quantities of healthy staples in order to cut cost. Consider the family-size package of boneless, skinless chicken breasts or the big box of whole-grain cereal. Store the excess properly so that it stays fresh until you are ready to use it.
• Stock your pantry, refrigerator and freezer with healthy staples that lend themselves to making tasty budget meals. Canned and frozen fruits and vegetables are as nutritious as fresh, and come with the added perk of keeping longer. Cooking whole grains in reduced-sodium broth instead of water perks up their flavor. Beans are an affordable source of quality protein, as well as the foundation for many favorite Mexican-inspired meals. Eggs are nutritious, can be eaten as part of any meal and are easy on the wallet. Canned fish, such as tuna or salmon, is less costly and more convenient than fresh. Lean ground beef is a key ingredient in budget-friendly burgers, tacos, lasagna and more. Frozen shrimp can make an ordinary taco, stir-fry or pasta dish extraordinary.
• Use higher priced ingredients such as seafood or steak in small amounts in a soup, salad, stir-fry or casserole instead of using it in large amounts as a main dish.
• Avoid waste. Plan meals wisely so that you use the ingredients you purchase, and be creative in considering all the possibilities for leftovers. Use them in salads, sandwiches, casseroles, pasta dishes or as pizza toppings.
• Keep an eye out for sales and coupons to get especially good deals on healthy foods.
To learn more about eating healthy on a budget, call our Consult-A-Nurse service 24 hours a day at 1-800-445-3392.