With so much negative news regarding the global economy is seems like a great time to share more Great NEWS and 10 tips about eating healthy for less.
Eating out is often expensive and even many grocery store products will set you back big bucks it is great to know about simple strategies that will save you big bucks while improving your health and wealth.
Ten Tips for Saving Money and Eating Healthy
1. Plant an organic garden. Any one can plant a garden in their yard or even a small one on a balcony. Some communities even have land set aside for local victory gardens. You may also be able to replace some of your existing landscape into native food bearing plants and trees.
2. Find family, friends or farmers who could benefit from your help with their garden and food growing. Barter your special services or time in exchange for healthy foods from their garden. Most gardens produce more food than the gardener can consume during peak season.
3. Learn to eat lower on the food chain and buy lower cost nutrient dense whole foods and avoid the highly refined and processed foods. This can be much more economical compared to fast foods and snack foods that are often very expensive when you compare the value you are receiving. Learning to prepare new recipes at home can save you significant money over eating out. You can greatly reduce the wasteful packaging and wrappings by looking for more efficient options. Often with a little preplanning you can find items on sale and stock up. You will not only save money by you will most likely enjoy a higher quality of foods and be more healthy and happy with the satisfaction of being more conscious of your nutrition.
4. Buy fruits, grains, legumes, nuts, seeds and other items in bulk. This is a great strategy for a group of families or friends to team up and cooperate to save money and time. When you buy many items in bulk you can often cut the price in half compared to small size packages. This also reduces excess pollution and waste of resources. Imagine how much fuel and money is saved with one large shipment of dry goods that can replace several smaller shipments and separate deliveries.
5. Shop and support your local farmers market. This a great way to get to know the people growing your foods and learn about their methods and policies. The more you know about them and support them in raising healthy food the better off both parties will be. Most farmers want to grow healthy food to supply to happy customers and make a fair profit. Ask permission to harvest your own surplus fruit, nuts, vegetables and plants during peak season from farmers and growers. Notice where there is an over abundance of fruits, produce and vegetables to identify potential discount buying opportunities.
6. Shop at members buying/ shopping clubs. While many people may feel this is a bit to commercial for them the truth of the matter is many people already belong to these shoppers clubs so we might as well take advantage of their buying power to influence the growers for more organic and locally produced foods. Another similar option is to form or join a co-op to create a more efficient and effective buying and distribution system.
7. Source the best produce and whole foods at grocery and health food stores. In today’s economic environment there are many opportunities to shop at new stores to source great foods. Be sure to check out local ethnic markets and independent food distributors. You can often find new and exciting foods, recipes and spices when you shop at a specialty store such as Asian, Hispanic, Middle Eastern, European or intercontinental store.
8. Access public lands to harvest wild foods (berries, cactus, dandelions, fruits, grasses, herbs, nuts, roots, sea weed, seeds, wild foods and much more. Be sure to do your homework and check your local laws and regulations regarding more details. While in Germany, Norway and Sweden this summer we harvested dandelions, flowers and nettles which were quite delicious and nutritious. We had lots of fun while learning more about the abundance of wild foods available.
9. Invest in new or good condition used food preparation equipment such as: blender, dehydrator, food processor, freezer, canning jars & lids, juicer, etc. to prepare your own special meals, treats and storage foods. You may also be able to help someone set up a part time business to produce items for you and for sale to the public. What feels like work for you may be pure pleasure for someone else.
10. Think outside the box to come up with creative ways to access and produce more economical food sources. Utilize the internet to find ideas and health foods that you can source outside your normal channels. In most communities you can find individuals and families that have land and time to create a teenagers part time income or hobby to create additional income.
Offer to help start the venture with the seeds, tools and training to get them started. Maybe your children would enjoy a garden and you give than a bonus financial incentive to demonstrate how a business is run. Neighborhood landscaping could be replaced with food bearing bushes and trees that provide food for the community and even homeless people. In California it is common to see orange trees and other food bearing plants used to prevent soil erosion and keep the landscape attractive while producing bonus crops. By encouraging more business, communities and individuals to plant and harvest foods we expand our food production base and with more foods available the prices can decrease.
Learning the basic skills to enjoy eating healthy for less is important and rewarding. What a great combination to save money and improve your health at the same time.
Our next blog post will share: Pro-biotic Pills or Plants?