Wouldn’t it be great if you could spend less money on food each month and still eat healthier? It may seem impossible, but you actually can. More than 35 percent of U.S. adults and 17 percent of children are considered obese today. Much of that is a result of lifestyle choices, and food choices play a big role.

But you can eat healthier, and you don’t have to buy expensive organic or all natural products either. Anyone can use the simple tips below to get the most from their food dollar.

Here are 5 top tips for reducing your spending at the grocery store while actually eating healthier every day:

#1: Plan your grocery shopping trip. Take a few minutes to think about what you’ll prepare in the coming days, and then make a list. Never go to the grocery store and “wing it.” When you plan your trip, you are more likely to purchase healthy foods that you’ll use, while minimizing the number of impulse buys.

#2: Never go to the market hungry. If you shop while you’re hungry, almost everything in the store will look good. And unfortunately, you’ll likely end up purchasing foods that are less healthy for you. The best time to shop is right after you’ve eaten.

#3: Shop around the outside first. Most markets are arranged with the fresh foods around the perimeter of the store. Fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh meats, and dairy are usually located there. If you plan to make a trip around the perimeter of the store first, you’ll focus on buying these fresh foods instead of the frozen or processed foods located along the interior aisles.

#4: Buy in bulk when you can. Many fresh fruits, lunch meats, breads and other foods can be frozen. Then you can take them out and use them whenever you want. For example, blueberries are in season right now, so they are very inexpensive in most markets, and they freeze well. Packaged foods like flour, rice, pasta, and other staples can often be purchased in bulk when they’re on sale.

#5: Learn to read food labels. It is essential that you know what you’re eating. When comparing 2 foods, you have to look at price, but also the nutrients that you’re getting in each serving. Understanding how to read the nutrition facts and ingredients list is critical to eating healthy. Would you buy a car without knowing what options it had? How about a TV without knowing the features? Then why buy food without reading the label?

Follow these tips and you can significantly reduce your grocery bills while eating more fresh, natural, healthy foods.

Remember, healthy choices you make each day can transform your family for generations! What choices will you make today?

Do You Wish Your Kid’s Ate Better? Check out our FREE eBook at www.HealthFamilyFuture.com. Many of the strategies in this book can be used by both children and adults.
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You may also want to read: Consumers Rely on Nutrition Info, Step 1: Teach Kids to Read Food Labels, Reduct the Fat, Improve Your Health

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9 Responses to Eat Right: Spend Less and Eat Healthier

  1. Erin Ferree says:

    I’d love to add my favorite two tips: Eat seasonally because what’s in season or popular for that time of year is most likely to be on sale. Around the 4th of July, it’s corn, zucchini and hamburger (of course, eat that last one in moderation or mix in some bulgur to add a whole grain to your patty and lower calories)

    Eat everything you buy! It sounds obvious, but as a recently-single person, I found that I was overbuying often and throwing out things that went bad. Now I look for opportunities to eat it all – and your first tip here about freezing certainly helps there.
    Erin Ferree recently posted..Don’t Miss The Future…My Profile

  2. Dr. Chawan says:

    Actually, being more practical, buying certain healthy foods in bulk and in non-traditional places can offer better benefits. For instance, at our local farmer’s market, one can get a 2-pound bag of spinach for $3, whereas in the store it costs $5 per half pound. You can buy a loaf of non-processed whole wheat bread for $1 instead of a loaf of bread at the store that costs $3.50. Just some other ideas to pursue.
    Dr. Chawan recently posted..Reducing Fat Can Lead To Weight LossMy Profile

  3. Karin says:

    These are great tips. I always look to buy as close to the original/natural form as possible (ie: buy apples instead of applesauce, potatoes instead of potato chips) since the more processed a food is, more nutrients it loses. Shopping the outside perimeters is so true!
    Karin recently posted..Negative or Positive, Either Way You’re RightMy Profile

  4. One thing that my mom passed on to me was the habit of making a grocery list – I have done it for years and never go shopping without my list – that way I always remember what I need and I rarely shop “randomly”. It makes me think out before I go to the store exactly what I want for the week. Now that I’m single and my “nest” is empty I’m shopping a LOT less and having to be even more mindful of what I buy because I’m only shopping for one – would love to hear from you about the single eater – it can be a real challenge to come up with creative alternatives when you have been cooking for a family for most of your life, want to have certain foods but it requires that you “overcook” more than you can reasonably eat in one sitting and then you have to eat the same thing for the next three days to not waste it!
    Amethyst Wyldfyre recently posted..Acknowledging the “PAWS” that Awakens – #5My Profile

  5. Gina Hiatt says:

    Michael, my biggest challenge is how to find less expensive organic food. We do a lot of shopping at Trader Joe’s. Whole Foods has a good supply but is more expensive. Local farmer’s markets do not always have a wide choice of organic food.
    Gina Hiatt recently posted..Five Ways to Lose Clients and MoneyMy Profile

  6. Sonia Miller says:

    Great tips. Thanks! It was validating to see what I’m already doing well. Also great to be reminded of ways to shop smarter. Something that has been very helfpul in my house is that I created a pre-fab shopping list on my computer with check boxes of regularly used items and extra lines for add-ons. It hangs on my fridge and the whole family it trained to check off the box or add to the list whenever we are approaching empty on any given item. Keeps shopping simple and less expensive so that we don’t have to run out to the nearer more expensive store and can maximize one shopping trip to the place that has our preferred items at preferred prices AND in bulk.

    Sonia

  7. Meghan says:

    Thanks for these tips, Michael! One of our techniques is that we get a box of organic produce delivered to our doorstep twice a month from a CSA farm (community supported agriculture) — so we commit to cooking and eating all random fruits and veggies that are delivered. And living near Trader Joe’s market lets us choose healthier items with ease.
    Meghan recently posted..Work at Home for Moms: 3 Weeks Postpartum and Learning to Say NoMy Profile

  8. Sue Paananen says:

    Great subject choice, Michael!! Healthier eating at a lower cost – who wouldn’t want it? My take-aways were to buy in bulk when on sale. We use to do that and had a regular grocery store at our house, but these last few years I haven’t been doing that – have had less in the house, and have been spending more on groceries. Time to go back to that habit of buying in bulk when on sale again.
    Sue Paananen recently posted..How To Blog – Blogging Effectively Using KeywordsMy Profile

  9. Tricia says:

    Great tips! I agree with Erin, buying locally and seasonally is a great way to save money and feel and be so healthy! Fresh figs and watermelon are making me smile these days! Today I also bought eggplant, red peppers, cherry tomatoes and fresh flowers at my local farmer’s market! :)

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