I’ve been watching my diet (and my budget) for quiet some time now.
While it is true that eating healthy can sometimes be expensive, it doesn’t always have to break the bank! Here are some tips I have gathered along the way that will help you save money on groceries.
1. Drop the Almond Milk/ Non-Dairy Milk For Smoothies
When I first got into making smoothies I thought I always needed a milk replacement, even up until recently.
“I can’t make a smoothie today I have no almond milk!”
I am now pretty sure most of what we think is true is simply excellent marketing from childhood and throughout our lives. Thinking of a smoothie, I think of something creamy; creamy equals milk. However, smoothies can be creamy with the addition of bananas, avocado and actual nuts. Therefore, to make a multi-ingredient smoothie, you don’t need any milk. You just need purified WATER!
Don’t waste your money or non-dairy milk in a smoothie when you can literally not taste the difference without it.
Plus, a lot of store bought milks have carrageenan in them and other not so awesome ingredients. According to a prominent researcher in the field, Joanne K. Tobacman, M.D., now associate professor of clinical medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine, “Exposure to carrageenan causes inflammation…when we consume processed foods containing it, we ingest enough to cause inflammation in our bodies…We know that chronic inflammation is a root cause of many serious diseases including heart disease, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, and cancer.”
Instead of using almond milk for your smoothie, try this awesome alternative:
- 2 bananas
- ½ tsp Maca powder
- 1 tbl chia seeds
- 1 tbl raw hemp seeds
- 2 handfuls of spinach
- ¾ cup water
- 2Tbl unsweetened coconut flakes
This is thick, creamy and sweet!
2. You Don’t Need Vegetable Stock for Your Soups
Again here is a case where you can just replace it with WATER!
I was using a veggie stock that had almost all the same ingredients that I was putting in the soup. If you’re making a vegetable soup and using herbs and spices the soup will be flavorful and delicious, there is no reason to use the veggie stock at all. It’s basically like just buying carrot water.
If you want to add more flavor, start collecting all your vegetable scarps and freezing them, then you can try this easy vegetable stock recipe.
3. Stop Buying Eggs for Baking
If you’re like me and always have flax and chia seeds in the cabinet, you can easily make a binding agent using those seeds and…you guessed it, water!
To do this, just grind up flax or chia seeds in a coffee grinder, for 1 egg use 1 tbl of the ground seed to 3 tbl water, stir and set in fridge for 15min – That’s it!
Another easy alternative for eggs when you are baking is apple sauce or a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of baking soda. Watch as the cake rises with no eggs!
4. Expensive Vitamins
I am in the process of moving from my home and the amount of bottles of different vitamins and natural herbs in pill form that I have in insane. You would think I was sitting around buying them from infomercials all day. I must have spent hundreds of dollars this year on pills that just sit there because I am so horrible at remembering to take pills. Last time I checked I was also still alive and I almost never get sick.
Unless your doctor specifically tells you to get an herb or vitamin, stop and think: “Do I need a pill or do I need to eat better?” Yes, you might be deficient in vitamins if your diet is all cereal, chemicals, and meat. However you if you are eating a rainbow of in-season fruits of veggies and a clean diet, I doubt you need to swallow pills with it.
5. Get A Good Night’s Sleep Without Those Sleeping Pills
Five years ago I thought I couldn’t sleep. I purchased an over the counter pill to help me sleep and it did help.
Looking back it was ridiculous what I was doing to my body. Eating chemicals and meals that were bad for my digestion and essentially putting my body to work right before bed. Then feeding it another chemical to sleep.
Instead to looking to pills to sleep, try this for a week:
- Do not eat meat for dinner. It puts your body to work right before bed, no wonder you’re awake, your digestion system is now doing hard labor.
- Eat a meal that digests easily like warm veggies, gluten free grains and/or soup.
- Do not eat high in sugar sweets before bed.
- Do not eat 1-2 hours before you go to bed
- Sip caffeine-free tea like peppermint or chamomile at night.
- Try doing some light exercise like taking a walk or doing gentle yoga to work off any excess tension in your body.
- Avoid watching TV or looking at electronics, instead read a book or have some quiet time.
Nowadays the grocery store is a money trap! But it doesn’t have to be. Make these simple changes and you’ll be saving money and staying healthy and strong!
About the Author
Jessica Leffler has been embarking on a journey to find balance, both mentally and physically, through food. She has found that you can attain optimal happiness and health by listening to your own inner guidance. An intuitive empath, New Yorker, sister, daughter, fashion buyer, Jessica is the blogger behind Food Journey: Eating to Live. Eat Clean and Love. She loves to cook, inspire, and learn from her fellow humans.
Main picture by Christopher Paquette