I changed my diet and added more meat and vegetables a few months ago. I was shocked when my grocery bill for the month went down and I could get by on $30 and sometimes, $50 a month.
Now, $50 a month is obviously not for the faint of heart. It’s not for those who don’t want to live the bare minimum.
My grocery spending decreasing so dramatically took me by surprise because the research I’ve done warned me eating healthy would be expensive. This is what I told myself and held as my belief system for years.
When people asked why I wasn’t eating healthy I would quote, “The government makes it very expensive to eat healthy and the prices of quality food are just too high. I would love to eat healthy but it’s just not viable in my financial situation.”
Note: I don’t recommend living off of $30 to $50 worth of food every month per person but it can be done. Like most things in life, your beliefs are systems that limit your views. They make it much harder to change in the future. Sometimes, you’ve got to shake things up and test those limits.
You must be frothing at the mouth in anticipation. Let’s start discussing these affordable ways to eat healthy.
I eat chicken breast, pork chops, minced pork, and fish whenever I can. My wife and son are deathly allergic to fish which completely cuts off one of the sources of protein that I like the most.
If you don’t find yourself in the same situation, I would highly recommend developing a taste for fish. Next to chicken, it is one of the most efficient fuel source for protein. My favorite type of fish, Basa, packs a tremendously efficient 22 g of protein per serving.
Traditionally the higher amount of protein, the more full and satisfied you’re going to feel at the end of a meal. Just make sure that you’re not overdoing your protein intake and suffering from side effects such as bloating or noxious gas. These are signs that you cannot assimilate enough of the protein.
Couple tips that you should consider are:
Purchasing whole chickens because they’re honestly cheaper
But those savings require a greater investment of time so this won’t work if you’re strapped for time.
If you’re able to find a good deal on minced pork, choose it. I prefer this to pork chops.
I take the minced pork, portion it into freezer bags and then use as needed. It’s delicious when used in making vegetable teriyaki stir fry.
Sales tax is the worst so don’t pay it
Sales tax kills food budgets depending on your region. Since sales tax varies greatly by region this tip may not be as effective in saving you money.
Québec sales tax, for example, is currently at about 15% between federal and provincial rates which take a significant portion of your monthly grocery budget. The beauty about switching to raw foods is these types of foods are very rarely taxed.
With my local tax rate so high, I’ve noticed that I can easily save between $10 and $20 per trip. If you’re like me and usually make 2 to 3 trips per month, that is significant savings that can be put towards more beneficial avenues such as your savings account.
Protein is your weapon of mass health (and budget cutting)
Protein is one of the cleanest and most efficient fuel sources for the human body because it provides the essential amino acids that our bodies cannot produce themselves. This is the same reason that eating protein will make you feel full for much longer than sugars or carbohydrates. The latter naturally turns to sugar when processed by the body.
When you’re not hungry, you won’t be eating as much. When you’re eating less, you’re burning less money to support your eating habits. Cutting out sugar and carbohydrates – which will naturally occur by following diets similar to mine – reduces insulin sensitivity and levels which regulate hormonal hunger.
Don’t Let Lack of Health Care Scare You
This may be hard to believe coming from somebody who lives in Canada and more specifically the Quebec region. Our healthcare system is one of our best public services and rivals that of neighboring provinces on public insurance coverage.
This may hit you right where it hurts if you’re an American who doesn’t have proper health care.
When you are eating a healthy and clean diet, you’re providing your body with the minerals and nutrients that it needs to function properly. Proper intake prevents several health issues, like heart attack and stroke.
You’ll Feel Great And You Can’t Put A Price on That
You should face it – money doesn’t buy happiness. If you think that, then you’ve already lost the game of life.
I haven’t felt so good like this in my whole life because I never focused on my health, nutrition, and where I wanted to go in life. Once you’ve fixed your diet and lifestyle, you reach critical mass and start a chain reaction that radiates to the other aspects of your life. I’ve begun strength training to build muscle mass and burn fat faster than cardio ever did for me.
With that, I’ve got more confidence than I have ever had before.
I’ve revived my blog, started writing religiously again, and begun experimenting with activities. I started focusing each day on improving over the last. I can’t attribute everything to nutrition but it jump-started everything else. Now, I’m soaring through the air like an eagle full of grace.
You can’t put a price on the feeling of fulfillment and purpose in life. Though having disposable income, significantly improved health, and a longer lifespan to appreciate your newfound lust for life as long as possible is worth all the money in the world. Few people ever feel like this despite having riches that can buy whole countries.
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Author: Shawn Michael Hartwell
Shawn is the author of his personal blog where he writes about customer experience, the importance of happy people in modern business, and shares his observations on life.