Being short of cash can be a neat excuse for not getting healthy, especially when donuts are so cheap! But these 10 tips might snap you out of your malaise.
Buy from the freezer section. Because frozen fruit and veg are snap frozen, they can often be fresher than the “fresh” stuff. (Some supermarket produce sits in cold storage for ages.) And packets or tins are usually cheaper, especially when they’re on special. Use them in smoothies, stir fries, stews and soups.
Read your supermarket or fruit shop junk mail. Find out what’s on special and buy in bulk, whether it’s tins of tuna (line-caught please) or in-season vegies. Freeze what you can’t eat now – veg like tomatoes, kale, corn, berries and zucchini freeze well. Blanching or steaming first can preserve them for longer.
Shop online. Many retailers will deliver for free, from food to vitamins and supplements. Discount Health Foods is one example. And they always have deals, you just need to get on the newsletters.
Don’t buy bottled drinks. Carry a water bottle and keep it filled with tap water.
Grow your own vegies, herbs and salad greens It’s so satisfying to pick free food from your own backyard or balcony and a good crop can last for months. Many staples like lettuce, rocket and beetroots happily live in pots. Seeds are cheaper to grow than seedlings too – they just take longer.
Use the excess. A good tomato or zucchini crop is often too much for one household. Chop and freeze your vegies, bottle your own passata, freeze batches of soup. Or start a mini food co-op with friends and swap your produce.
Go to the grower’s market just before closing. That’s when stallholders start shouting their markdowns at you, which makes it cheap AND fun.
Try a new protein. Meat can be expensive. You can switch it out with eggs or lentils, dried or tinned beans. Who knows – you might end up a vego convert.
Use free apps. There are lots out there to support your healthy eating mission, including phone apps to help you better incorporate superfoods, make you alcohol aware, find new smoothie recipes, and tell you what fruit and veg are in season.
Have a meal plan. Planning a week’s worth of meals means you have a set shopping list so it means there’s less time wasted in the aisles, you only buy what you need for the week, plus you’re less tempted to eat out or buy takeaways.