How to eat healthy with little money in the US

How to eat healthy with little money in the US

Eating healthy on a budget when prices go up is possible, we share five shopping and cooking tips that can help you save. Cooking at home can be much healthier and less expensive than eating out

Eating healthy can help prevent disease and can also promote a longer life. Some people believe that eating healthy requires higher expenses, however, healthy food does not necessarily have to be expensive.

The prices of many food products have increased, given this, we can become more selective and opt for those nutritious, healthy foods that are cheaper.

How to eat healthy for less money

1. Cook at home and plan meals

Cooking at home can be much healthier and less expensive than fast food and table service restaurants, according to a report from the USDA Economic Research Service.

Planning meals will help you buy what you will use, avoid unnecessary purchases and reduce food waste. Check what you already have at home and make a shopping list.

2. Avoid highly processed foods

Highly processed or ultra-processed foods often have little or no nutritional value and don’t help you save money either.

A diet rich in highly processed foods and beverages is associated with an increased risk of mortality from all causes. These foods often contain high levels of salt, sugar and fat, can promote weight gain and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease.

3. Buy seasonal and frozen fruits and vegetables

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) share that the consumption of fruits and vegetables can support immune function and prevent chronic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some types of cancer.

To save, buy seasonal and frozen fruits and vegetables. “Frozen vegetables are kept closer to when they’re picked, so they’re not only cheaper, but often healthier than buying fresh,” said Merry Fitzpatrick, a professor and researcher at the Friedman School of Science and Tufts University Nutrition Policies.

4. Eat less meat

Meat is an expensive product whose prices continue to rise. The Harvard Nutrition Source shares that meals don’t have to include meat or other animal foods to be tasty and satisfying.

You can choose to reduce the consumption of meats, include them in much smaller proportions and choose the least expensive cuts. Chicken is a healthy protein that you can use in various stews, soups, and burritos. Buying a whole chicken is cheaper and buying rotisserie chicken helps cut down on time in the kitchen.

5. Use leftovers

Food waste makes you lose money. Leftovers can help you get to food faster when you have little time to cook, they can be used in salads and burritos, as well as soups and stews. If you have food that you know you won’t be eating for a short period of time, freeze it and make sure to eat it later.