7 Ways to Switch to Clean Eating Without Breaking the Bank
The biggest challenge most people encounter when switching to clean eating isn’t the food. Fresh, homemade, organic food is delicious! While giving up the sweet stuff can be hard, overall the reward if far worth it. There may be that one food you just can’t let go of, but that isn’t the issue either. The issue is the "bottom line", that line item on the budget when you try to switch it all to clean, organic, GMO-free food. When you hit the end of the checkout line for the first time, and almost faint when the total comes up. Maybe you didn’t even make it that far. Maybe you picked up the bag of organic avocados and took one look at the tag on the shelf and walked the other way thinking, ‘How do people afford to eat this way?!’
I can tell you, unless you have a whole lot of extra income lying around, switching your way of eating and shopping doesn’t usually happen overnight. And that's ok! We make small changes and keep looking for ways to eat clean on our budget and find ways to funnel more money over to the food line. It is an investment, but I can tell you it is definitely one worth making.
To help you out, here are my top 7 tips for eating clean on a budget:
1. Make it from scratch – Cooking at home saves money over eating out any day. You can even take it one step further and start making food from scratch, which is even cheaper & healthier than buying those fancy, boxed sides and mixes. You will save money and, better yet, you will know exactly what’s in the food you’re eating. Try mastering one new dish a week! Have a party to try new things with your friends.
2. Plan your meals and shop with a list – It is always a good idea to have a plan. You will save money by knowing what you need and make fewer trips to the store. All my programs include meals plans and shopping lists to make your life easier.
3. Buy in bulk – If you can, purchase larger quantities. Freeze and store the extra for another week. Stores always have bigger packs that cost less per unit. Be wary, though: sometimes the big package isn’t less. Be sure to check the unit price and be a smart shopper.
4. Shop local and seasonal– Foods that are in season are generally cheaper than the foods that have to be shipped from halfway around the globe. Also, it pays to know your farmer and buy directly from the source. Eating with the seasons is also more natural for your body.
5. Use sales, discounts or coupons if you can find them – Sometimes, you can find a deal or get a coupon on healthy snacks.
6. Join a group – There are plenty of local groups that share in the savings by pooling their buying power. Check out a local co-op or CSA or start one in your area. You can find them at coopdirectory.com or localharvest.org.
7. Go meatless a few days a week– Try exposing your body to whole plant proteins. Eliminate meat for a few meals a week. Beans are cheaper than beef!
Do you have any local resources to share or any tips that can help save a buck? Leave a comment below.
If you enjoyed this post and are wanting to THRIVE, not just survive, consider working with me as your personal health coach. Together we will make an actionable plan based on where you are and where you want to be. All of my plans include a comprehensive health history, food plan, recipes, shopping lists and a plethora of support materials, not to mention all the mindfulness tools & techniques I teach you to put those gremlins to rest for good! If your gut has become the baine of your existence then you might be interested in my 8-Week Vibrant Gut Restoration Program.
I invite you to also join me on my Facebook page, facebook.com/drlaramay, where I’ll be sharing more information, tips, and recipes to help you live a happier, healthier life.
To your wellness,
- Dr. Lara
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