We keep saying that healthy eating can and be budget friendly. Late last month, the folks that brought you the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen at the Environmental Working Group (EWG) unveiled their newest consumer-friendly tool – the Good Food on a Tight Budget Guide, so there’s more help than ever for consumers who are trying to eat right but not spend more.
This guide sets out to identify the most nutritious, economical and pollutant-free foods available. Looking at ingredient quality, price, nutrients, pesticide load and other factors helped to create a list of top 100 go-to foods.
Read more »
- Does eating well cost more money?
Does following a healthy diet mean dishing out more dough? Not necessarily. A new study published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture revealed that healthy food isn’t any more expensive than junk food.
With more than one-third of U.S. adults being overweight and a push from the Obama administration to fight rising obesity levels, this new study sheds light on budgetary concerns when it comes to healthy eating.
Previous studies were highly criticized for comparing the cost of food per calorie. These studies found that pastries and chips and cheaper than fruit and veggies. The newest study conducted by the Agricultural Department compared cost of foods by weight or portion size which reveals that grains, veggies, fruit and dairy foods are less costly than most meats or foods high in added sugar, salt, or artery-clogging saturated fat. The study found that carrots, banana, lettuce and pinto beans were all cheaper per portion than soda, ice cream, ground beef or French fries.
Read more »
Utilizing your freezer can mean big savings of time and money. Are you down with chilling?
The biggest freezer mistake people make is not keeping the freezer set to the proper temperature. If it’s too warm in there you’ll get transferring odors, freezer burn, and foul tasting food. Invest in a freezer thermometer and make sure it says an icy zero degrees in there.
All that opening and closing of the door can cause shifts in temperature. For this reason be sure to place foods in the appropriate spot. If you aren’t going to be reaching for it for a while, keep it in the back of the freezer. Frequently used items can go closer to the front or in the door.
Pointers for keeping your freezer spic and span include: wiping down shelving with a damp rag to keep it free of dust and debris and placing a box of baking soda in every 3 months to help absorb odors. See ice building up? If so, it’s time to defrost! Check the manufacturers directions for details on how.
Read more »
Living a healthy life doesn’t have to cost more.
We’re always reminding you that a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to break the bank. How about some expert tips to back that up? We polled nutrition experts across the country for their best tips for eating smart and exercising on a budget.
Brown Bag It
Our September Brown Bag Challenge was a huge success. If you missed it, it’s never too late to start bringing your lunch to work or school. Annette Schottenfeld, MBA, RD, CDN, President of Nett Nutrition, Inc. says:
“Packing your own lunch not only saves money, but also guarantees much needed nutrition to get you through the day. Select lean meats and veggies on whole grain bread with a side of seasonal fruit for a delicious and satisfying lunch. Additional savings can also be had by making your own single-serve snack bags.”
Packing up single servings goes for dinner leftovers too. Karen Ansel, MS, RD, CDN tells us:
“Wrap leftovers into single-serve portions immediately after dinner. Not only will you save money because you’re not throwing out perfectly good food, you’ll have a single serve, healthy homemade meal in the freezer waiting for you next time you have no time to cook.”
Read more »
- Rolled oats will cost you just 20 cents per 1/2 cup portion.
Our original top 10 list was so popular, Healthy Eats readers asked for more. Here are 10 more healthy foods that won’t break the bank.
Cost: $0.89 per 1 pound bag (about 9 carrots)
Even my kids tout the benefits of carrots, “They give you healthy eyes, mom” they always tell me. But beta-carotene has more benefits than meets the eyes. It also helps promote healthy bones, skin and hair. Make carrot soup, add to a stir-fry, or slice into strips for an easy kids snack.
#2: Low fat cottage cheese
Cost: $2.75 per 16-ounce container
This perfect combo of protein, carbs and fat will help keep you satisfied. It’ll also give you a boost of calcium with 10% of your daily recommended dosage in every ½ cup serving. If you’ve been passing this underappreciated food in your dairy aisle, check out more reasons why we love it.
Read more »
- How much are you willing to fork over at the register?
A recent study finds that Americans aren’t willing to put their money where their mouth is for healthier restaurant options. Are some foods worth the extra cash?
Footing the Bill
A study published in June finds that a large chunk of Americans aren’t willing to pay more for healthy foods at restaurants. The New York based marketing research firm that published the report found that approximately 70 percent of consumers over age 50 don’t expect to pay a higher price for more health-conscious menu items. The study also points out a decrease since 2007 in overall interest in seeking out healthier fare.
There seems to be a bit more hope for younger folks (ages 18 to 24) — only 44 percent said they wouldn’t be willing to cough up more money.
Researchers recommend that restaurants increase efforts to offer healthy fare at comparable price points to other menu choices to keep customers coming back. My suggestion: restaurants could downsize large portions to help adjust costs. Read more »
- Melissa D'Arabian's Applesauce Granita With Maple Yogurt
Busy schedules don’t mean you have to rely on pricey (and usually higher-calorie) take-out dinners. In fact, hectic days are an even better reason to stay energized with balanced, healthy and delicious meals. Eating smart doesn’t have to break the bank – here are 4 dinner ideas to prove it.
4 healthy, budget-friendly dinners »
When it comes to budget shopping, I tell all my clients: “Get familiar with the bulk aisle!” This part of the supermarket can be a real money-saver for many reasons.
Read more »
This week, readers shared some favorite dishes to help keep your wallet — and your waistline — healthy. Plus, find out one reader’s trick for cutting the fat in creamy soups.
Read more »
Cheap and healthy meals sound almost too good to be true, but you can cut down your grocery bill without slicing healthy ingredients from your shopping list. Whether you like traditional comfort foods or want to spice up your diet with exotic flavors, our top 25 budget-friendly recipes will help you get more bang for your buck.
Get the recipes »