At the start of a new year we all try to exercise a little bit more and eat a little bit less. We often feel the excess Christmas lifestyle leaves us feeling a bit guilty about over indulging. However, 2021 not only brings the usual new year pressure to be healthier but with lockdown life still looming we all need to be taking extra care of ourselves. And good nutrition plays an important part in that.
But does eating healthier meals cost us more?
Due to branding and social media posts we can be pushed into thinking the only way to loose weight is to buy expensive protein shakes or only snack on a specific high protein low calorie chocolate bars at £2.50 a pop. But that is not the case.
Something we believe in; is any lifestyle change you make has to be sustainable and realistic – so affordability is key.
Here are some tips to eating healthier on a budget:
- Meal planning will really help you to reduce waste and not buy anything you don’t really need. Pick a day that fits in with your lifestyle to plan out your meals for the week, from that make your shopping list and stick to it! Keep in mind you might want to batch cook as well which is really cost efficient as you can buy in bulk.
- Buying food in bulk is more cost effective, if you don’t need to batch cook with that particular ingredient you can always freeze items until you need it.
- Try to adapt family classics with healthier options. Try using 5% fat beef mince or lean turkey mince in your chilli or spaghetti bolognaise or make your own white sauce for lasagne with reduced fat cheese. By making small changes you can still keep the family happy at meal times but reduce your calorie intake.
- You don’t need to buy expensive protein shakes or snacks. There are plenty of cheaper alternatives that are packed full of protein. Chick peas are super high in protein and are perfect to bulk out chillies and curries. Kidney beans are very similar to add to mince or salads. And eggs are extremely cost effective, a good source of protein and super easy to make for any meal anytime,
- You might want to try to go meatless a couple of times a week. By reducing the amount of meat on your shopping list you will bring down your spend. There are some fantastic vegetarian dinner ideas to share with the whole family, such as: pasta dishes, vegetable fajitas – get googling for inspo.
- Buy frozen fruit and vegetables. This is a really easy way to save money and reduce any wastage. These are handy for families to have as a back up during a busy week as fruit and vegetables can often run out without being noticed.
- Be versatile with your cooking. When cooking, try to make more than one dish from the batch. For example: roasted vegetable tray bake is really easy and cost effective to make. From that one dish you can have it with fish, stir into pasta and have left overs as a side dish or for lunch the next day.
- Get your slow cooker out. Cooking in a slow cooker is not only super efficient on time, but also makes batch cooking easier. You can buy in bulk and cook up a meal to be frozen for a later date and keep you stocked up. Takes away any need for frying too!
- Try to increase your water intake. This is obviously very important to do, but also helps with your spend. You don’t need to buy expensive sports or energy drinks, simply concentrate on increasing water intake and see the difference in your skin and energy. We recommend around 2l a day.
- You can also save money by changing where you shop. Buying your meat from a local butcher can be very cost efficient and often better quality. And particular supermarkets lead on price without sacrificing quality.
Our coaching team can guide you on how to manage your nutrition in a practical and family friendly way. Get in touch to discuss our new 30 Day Nutrition Kickstart plan with the team.