With superfoods emerging more quickly than we can consume, healthy eating has quickly become an overwhelmingly expensive way of life. The proof is in the (chia seed) pudding that set you back $15 at lunch.
However, provided you are making the right choices when it comes to health foods, living a clean, green existence can actually be financially sustainable. Here are the rules you should be following.
Back to Basics
A healthy diet doesn’t need to be complicated and we most certainly don’t need $10 juices to help us reach our daily nutrient requirements. Going back to basics and prioritising fresh fruit, vegetables and minimally-processed foods is number one. Shopping at local markets and opting for seasonal produce will also help you get costs down.
Go Old School
There are a number of health foods which have been swept aside since we were introduced to the likes of kombucha, spirulina and coyo. Rolled oats, eggs and olive oil are all extremely nutrient-dense and shouldn’t be overlooked (unless an intolerance is present of course). These health foods are generally affordable and can provide an abundance of health benefits.
Quality not Quantity
Some health foods are worth the investment, some not so much. I recommend investing in good quality cold pressed olive oil, organic coconut oil and quality meat (provided you’re not a vegetarian). Grains, nuts and seeds are generally of similar quality, but opting for an organic variety will help decrease chemical and GMO consumption. Buying these items in bulk at wholesale outlets will also help pinch pennies.
Purchasing pre-made muesli’s or paleo snack bars is money down the drain. If you want to enjoy these goods, try making your own granola and bliss balls with ingredients you can keep for a long time. Not only will this give you spare change for fresh vegetables, but it will decrease your consumption of processed foods.
Use What you Have
Some of the best homemade meals can be an unplanned combination of whatever is left in the fridge. Ensuring you are using what you have before purchasing more food will prevent wastage and even inspire some creativity in the kitchen. If you are looking for a cheap protein alternative, try using tinned chickpeas or lentils for some added fiber and nutrients.
Image via The Healthy Ingredient.