Eating healthy can end up being a very expensive journey of obscure health foods, failed recipes, and awful tasting plates of “oh but it’s good for you,” so how exactly do we navigate health without breaking the bank?
Firstly, the boring point is that like all good things over time, there must be some planning and effort involved to create a vibrant, energetic, and successful lifestyle on a budget BUT I promise it will be worth it if you just stick to the following tips and get back to the basics. This isn’t complicated but if you’re in desperate need of starting somewhere then this is the perfect place. It may seem contradictory to explain affordable ways to start out when we are a holistic company selling higher priced whole food, but holistic is the key word there. We want to look at everything and everyone. Some weeks you'll be able to afford plenty, and other weeks you're saving for a holiday. Cutting down on some costs at home might even give you the flexibility to relax and enjoy our products on busy weeks where you don't want to risk take-out and crashing through rubbish food.
Boring I know, but fundamental to success and you and I both know it. Always shop with a list, never shop hungry, and plan what you want to eat in advanced. Making your breakfast or prepping it on Sunday nights means that Monday morning starts off well. So get into this habit and routine for success. Have a list of go-to snacks for emergency situations.
Think about filling half of it with clean, fresh produce (that's vegetables and plenty of them) and then add a little carbohydrate like brown rice, kumara, pumpkin and then top it off with some protein and healthy fats. Cheap mince cooked in a tomato based sauce is a great budget friendly option. Brown rice and beans mixed together form what we call a complete protein that contains all essential amino acids required for cell rebuilding so is the perfect meat replacement when on a budget (or for vegetarian meals) and can be combined with fresh vegetables and herbs for a great stir fry.
Frozen foods tend to have a bad reputation but plain frozen vegetables and berries are great to have on hand all year round. They’re cheap, easy to cook, and still have a great nutritional profile. You should always have berries, spinach, baby carrots, peas and beans in your freezer for dinners that are super fast and affordable.
We could all benefit from drinking more water so why not save some coin by avoiding all liquid purchases for a week and sticking with quality water to keep you hydrated and full. Skip the bottles when shopping, and avoid drink purchases when out. Your water bottle should be your best friend. Cleansing, hydrating goodness at your side through thick and thin! Amazing for your skin this Summer too so a perfect combination of beauty and budget. Make sure you invest in a glass or metal waterbottle so you're not exposing yourself to harmful chemicals from plastics and you're being kind to the environment at the same time.
You should have a great stock of dry goods like nuts, seeds, spices, oats, grains, and brown rice, then add cans of coconut cream, tomatoes, beetroot, black beans, kidney beans and lentils and finally, make the remainder of your shop fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds and optional meat and dairy. By having basics on hand you'll be able to throw together almost anything in a hurry.
Being cheap does not equal being boring. Grab the family and hit your local market while enjoying a nice morning out. Think about the math for just one second - if supply of fresh, in season produce is surplus to demand then it’s going to drive the cost down, so it is the best time to buy cheap fruits and vegetables that are at their best nutritionally. Avoid buying the offshore produce that has been chemically ripened and sent in transit from the other side of the world. The markets are the best places for low cost and fresh food that is friendly for both your wallet and your body.