Here are 10 tips to get back on track after an unplanned binge.
1. Plan your meals for the week and make a grocery list. Only buy what you’re sure you will use, and check out what you already have in your cupboards first.
2. Stick to your grocery list when you’re shopping. Shop the perimeter of the store first, since this is where the whole foods are generally located.
3. Cooking at home can be much less expensive than eating out. Some find it best to cook for the entire week on weekends, while others like to cook one meal at a time.
4. Cook large meals from inexpensive ingredients, and use your leftovers during the following days.
5. Shopping while hungry can lead to impulsive buying. If you’re hungry, have a snack before you go grocery shopping.
6. Whole foods are often less expensive than their processed counterparts. You can also buy them in larger quantities.
7. Most stores offer generic brands for many products. These are often of the same quality as more expensive national brands.
8. Avoid buying highly processed foods. Not only are they expensive, they often contain lots of sodium or sugar, with little to no nutritional value.
9. Stock up on staples and favorite products when they’re on sale. Just make sure that they won’t go bad in the meantime.
10. Less expensive cuts of meat are great to use in casseroles, soups, stews, and burritos. These types of recipes usually make big meals and lots of leftovers.
11. Try replacing meat 1 or 2 times per week with beans, legumes, eggs or canned fish. These are all cheap and nutritious sources of protein.
12. Produce that is in season is typically cheaper and more nutritious. If you buy too much, freeze the rest or incorporate it into future meal plans.
13. Frozen fruits, berries, and vegetables are usually just as nutritious as their fresh counterparts. They’re available all year round and often sold in large bags.
14. Many foods are available in bulk for a way lower price. They keep for a long time in airtight containers and can be used in a variety of nutritious, inexpensive dishes.