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We all know how important it is to eat well and have a highly nutritious diet, but doing that a budget doesn’t always seem possible.
We have had a look at how you can eat well and save pounds on your waistline and shopping bill.
Have a plan
Boring, maybe. Effective, definitely. Having a weekly meal plan means no last-minute microwave meals or takeaways because there is nothing in the cupboard. You can cover breakfast, lunch and dinner for each day of the week and will find that in no time at all you will no longer reach for the crisps when you come home from a hard day at work because you don’t know what to eat.
Buy what you need
Doing a ‘big shop’ might not be helping your quest to be healthy or to save money. Buy what you need for the next few days, then that is what you have to eat meaning you will have less waste. You might also find shopping online, using the cheaper and free delivery slots, helps you stop going buying the BOGOF offers you don ‘t need instead stock up on cans and other non perishable items that can be cheaper when bought in bulk.
Shop late in the day
You will be amazed at the fresh produce that is reduced at the end of the day to ensure it sells. Bananas, fish, meat, yogurt and bread are all up for grabs at a knock down price so be savvy and save money.
Freeze any unused food, batch make curries and pasta sauces and if you aren’t going to eat something before (see above) the ‘best before’ – freeze it.
Speaking of frozen food, you will find you waste less if you go for these options in the supermarket. Frozen fruit and vegetables are just as good for you than the fresh varieties as they are picked at the peak of freshness and frozen to seal in their nutrients. You will find many frozen fruit and vegetables come pre-chopped, ready to use and in handy portion sizes which not only help you eat sensibly but also save waste.
Don’t be a brand snob
Yes, the big brands have a good reputation but things like tinned tomatoes and sweetcorn, cereals and nuts will taste just as good whether they are the supermarket’s own option or the shiny famous choice. Go on, give it a go.
Be pulse happy
Beans, lentils and chickpeas are some super cheap but also packed with fibre, vitamins and are low-fat too. Using them to replace mince or chicken in meals like chilli con carne or chicken curry and you instantly have a cheaper, healthier and even tastier option.
Buy meat for less
If you spend longer cooking your meat, you can go for cheaper cuts like braising steak, shin or shoulder. Putting these in a slow cooker with hearty vegetables and stock is a great tasting meal at a good cost and if there are leftovers, have them for lunch the next day.
Cook from scratch
Forget creamy sauces and salt rich dressings and instead prepare your food from scratch. Social media has a wealth of great recipes that are easy to follow and as you tuck in you know exactly what you are eating.
Think about what you drink
With the new sugar tax now launched, there is one more reason to cut out the nutritious poor fizzy drinks from your diet. Water with lemon and cucumber is a great hydrator, smoothies offer a fruity punch and green tea is a sensible coffee swap.
Eating the healthy way doesn’t have to cost the earth but it certainly can help save some money.