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Can you eat healthy on a budget?

Do you feel eating healthy costs more? It is possible to eat healthy and stick to a budget.

The most important step to saving money on food is to have a plan for eating. Investing a little bit of time and effort on a plan will save you time and money later. Try these tips to eat healthy and keep that grocery bill low:

  1. Plan a weekly menu and prepare a shopping list. When you are in the store, stick to the shopping list and avoid extra impulse buys. Shop for meals and snacks, not just food.
  2. Don't shop when you are hungry. Shopping hungry may lead to extra, less nutritious items in your cart.
  3. Compare prices and use coupons. Store brands tend to cost less than national brands and are just as nutritious. Consider a grocer's rewards program which can help save money. Watch the local papers for coupons.
  4. Compare unit pricing on the shelves. Purchase the item that is the lowest price per unit. Be sure to check higher and lower shelves because the most expensive items tend to be at eye level.
  5. Purchase fresh fruits and vegetables that are in season. They will be economical and taste the best. Remember to plan your weekly menu to include seasonal fruits and vegetables.
  6. Limit pre-cut and pre-bagged produce. Pre-cut items tend to be more expensive. You can wash and cut the produce at home and save money.
  7. Go meatless: Plant proteins like beans, lentils and seed are cheaper alternatives to animal proteins, except for eggs. Beans will add protein, iron and fiber to your favorite dish.
  8. Shop local. Fresh produce often costs less when it is in season and has less distance to travel. Farmer's market or CSA's offer low-cost, local food items. To find a farmer's market near you, call your City office or visit www.localharvest.org
  9. Prevent food waste. Throwing away food is throwing away money. Find ways to prepare leftovers so you do not have to eat the same thing over again.
  10. Pay attention at check out. Mistakes can happen so make sure prices ring up as they should.

The next time you are at the grocery store, use these helpful tips and save!

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