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How to eat healthy on a budget

Are your trips to Whole Foods costing you more than your monthly rent? Here are some tips on how to eat well while watching your money belt.

1. Make a plan. Think ahead about the week- What will you cook and when will you cook? Note when you will be eating out or traveling or coming home late. This way, you can prevent the detour for take out on the way home from a long day's work. And you will prevent wasting spoiled produce sitting in your refrigerator drawer.

2. Make a list. This will keep you from grabbing the promotions and glitzy food products that supermarkets place at your eye level.

3. Stick to the store's perimeter. Yes, you've heard this before. Avoid the center aisles that have the packaged and processed products. The fresh stuff in the perimeter is healthier and generally cheaper.

4. Buy whole foods. Chopped vegetables and fruit may be convenient but they are marked up due to packaging. Buy the whole onion and chop it yourself at home.

5. Buy in bulk. Great for rice, beans, nuts, and dried fruit. This is the same idea- bulk foods are lower priced compared to same food packaged.

6. Power up with plant based protein- Beans and legumes are cheap and pack a lot of nutrition. Check out recipes with chickpeas, lentils, black beans, and peas.

Check out this Mexican Bean Salad that is both simple and delicious!

7. Don't forget the frozen foods section. Look for organic vegetables and fruit which generally are flash frozen to retain their nutrients and can be a consistent source of organic produce throughout the year.

8. Coupons. Occasionally, stores will have digital coupons or instant savings on products you use regularly use, so stock up on can foods or frozen foods.

9. Compare unit prices. Most grocery stores label the price tag showing total price and price per unit, and so that even though product A may be 4.99 and product B is 3.99, the unit price of product A is less than product B and therefore a better deal.

Credit- Institute for Integrative Nutrition

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