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12 Practical Ways to Eat Healthy (While Keeping Your Grocery Bill Low)

12 Practical Ways to Eat Healthy (While Keeping Your Grocery Bill Low)

Do you want to spend less on your grocery shopping while still eating healthily? Many people think that healthy eating is expensive, but there are tips and tricks you can use to make sure you eat healthy food without spending too much.

Just check out these 12 practical ways to eat healthy, while keeping your bill manageable.

1. Buy organic food locally

Organic food is a great way to make sure you are eating healthy food, but it is often expensive in supermarkets. However, it is normally much cheaper at your local farmer’s market. Additionally, you’ll find different, fresher-than-fresh options as the seasons change.

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2. Invest in a slow cooker

A slow cooker is a great way for you to make healthy meals cheap and easy — they are perfect for making nutritious stews, sauces and soups. You can simply put the ingredient in the crock pot in the morning and you will have a hot, delicious meal ready for 5 p.m.

3. Cut down on meat

Meat is a great source of protein, but it can be quite expensive. Save some money by eating one meatless meal a day, or try eating a vegetarian diet for a few days each week. Cheap and healthy protein alternatives include tofu, beans and whole grains.

4. Add an extra day between grocery shopping

Instead of doing your grocery shop once a week, try and make your shop last eight days instead. This will help you to use up forgotten-about canned and frozen food, making your money go a little further.

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5. Use the freezer

Most people are often inclined to throw away food that has nearly reached it’s sell-by-date, but freezing it will save you money and make sure the food doesn’t get wasted. You can also buy reduced milk, meat and bread that are near their sell-by-dates. Just freeze them for later use.

6. Budget your spending

If you don’t already have a budget, set one for your grocery shopping every week — and stick to it. Once you are in a routine, take a close look at your grocery bills and see if there is anything especially expensive that you could stop buying.

This will help you to figure out what is wasting your money and what isn’t.

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7. Cut out restaurants and take-out

Eating out is expensive, and often many people don’t actually realize how often they are doing it. Drive-thru’s, take-out coffee, delivery food, cafés and restaurants are all pricey alternatives to preparing your own food and drink.

Carrying a thermos of coffee and making your own lunch are all good ways to avoid take-out temptation.

8. Buy less branded food

You don’t have to cut out your favorite branded products, but many cheaper alternatives have the same taste and nutritional value. Read the packaging to find alternatives that will taste similar, with a lower price.

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9. Price match different stores

Many people do their full grocery shop at one store, but this means they are probably missing out on savings. As mentioned in point one, farmers markets will often have cheaper organic food. And butchers are well known for better quality, cheaper meat.

Shop around and find the cheapest places so you know you are always getting value for money.

10. Buy food in bulk

Many stores offer deals where you can get more for your money by buying in bulk. Grains, nuts, spices and sweets can often be bought in bulk, and they have a long shelf life — so there is no pressure to use everything up quickly.

11. Plan your meals at the beginning of the week

Don’t shop without deciding what you want first, as you are more likely to impulse buy expensive products you don’t need. Write a shopping list before you go, and aim to find the cheapest option in the store.

12. Buy frozen food

There is a common misconception that all frozen food is unhealthy — it simply isn’t true. Frozen vegetables and fruit still retain their nutritional value, and they are often much cheaper than the fresh alternative.

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Amy Johnson

Amy is a writer who blogs about relationships and lifestyle advice.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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