Good nutrition is the key to a healthy mind and body - and it does not have to be expensive. Here are expert tips on how to get a healthy diet on a budget.

Contrary to what you may have heard, eating healthy does not have to be very expensive. Healthy food does not have to be more expensive. Unfinished fruits and vegetables can fill a bowl and a stomach cheaper than many processed foods.

Cook at home

One of the most important ways to eat healthier and save money is to cook at home. Instead of going out to buy ready-made healthy food from the stores, get the ingredients and make them yourself. If it's not your business to make whole meals, or if you do not have the time, a nutritious and cost-effective alternative is to make your own healthy accessories, such as salad dressings or granola.

These can be expensive when bought in a store, and making them yourself with fresh ingredients is an easy way to not only save money but also to eat healthier versions of your favorite foods, as they do not contain preservatives and you can control the amount of salt added and sugar. Have your own protein-rich snacks ready so you can take them instead of reaching for the chips.

Shop at your local farmers market

Visit your local farm market for fresh fruits and vegetables during the season. Products that are in season are much cheaper than buying products that are not, and the best place to know what is in season is at a farmers market. Supporting local farmers means spending about half as much in the grocery store than you would otherwise.

Agricultural markets are budget-friendly because farmers bring their goods directly to customers without interference from freight forwarders, retailers and other intermediaries. So you get fresh, healthy fruits and vegetables and you support your local farmers.

Another tip?

Make sure you use your products to the fullest and try not to waste anything. A cabbage head can last up to 10 meals depending on how you use it and will only give you about two to three dollars. You get creative and make different dishes with the same vegetables. All fruits and vegetables that you have not used yet but are close to destroying can be made into smoothies.

Buy food in bulk and try to stick to store brands

When you can, you can buy food in bulk - especially foods that have a longer shelf life or can be frozen. Buying your favorite healthy food in large quantities means fewer trips to the store and more money saved. Buying generic or retail brands of healthy foods - such as cereals, yogurt, granola - is also cheaper than branded versions. Refilling branded supermarkets can save you an average of 15 to 30 percent.

Use grocery coupons and money-back apps

It is recommended that you take advantage of grocery coupons, money-back apps or credit cards that allow you to get money back on your groceries.

Prepare meals in advance

Sometimes the last thing you want to do after a long day is cook. To avoid buying ready-made food in these situations, set aside one day a week to cook. Cooking does not have to be difficult. To keep it simple, it is suggested to have a protein source in every meal, at least one vegetable and a whole grain or nutrient rich starch. Making healthy meals in large quantities saves you time and money and makes it easy to eat healthy.

This ensures that you have plenty of leftovers that you can freeze and heat on nights you do not feel like cooking, which will inevitably discourage you from ordering food and eating something that is not as healthy ”.

Store in frozen products

Buying frozen fruits and vegetables is a great way to eat healthy on a budget. Frozen products cost about 30% less than fresh produce. In addition, fruits and vegetables last much longer and are usually all chopped and ready to cook, so you do not have to spend time rinsing and cutting. If you find that you do not use much of the fresh ingredients you buy or that it is destroyed quickly, frozen may be a good option for you.

If there is a sale of fresh fruit or vegetables, Adams suggests buying a lot and freezing some of it yourself so you can use it longer. Keep in mind that this does not apply to preserves - they tend to have higher levels of fat, salt and sugar.

Eat less meat and dairy products

It is easy to see why the average cost of a kilo tofu is cheaper than for beef or chicken. Try changing at least one or two days a week to incorporate herbal protein sources into your diet - it saves money and also keeps your diet healthier.

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