Shopping healthy doesn’t mean having to spend a lot of money at the grocery store. Money can be tight and some people think that eating healthy is too expensive. It is actually the total opposite. If you learn to cook and choose foods in the season it is actually much cheaper in the long run and the short run!
Here are some super easy things you can do to save time, money, and your waistline at college.
Buy generic instead of getting everything name brand.
There are plenty of grocery stores such as Aldi’s, Walmart, SafeWay, Publix, etc that carry their own brands. They are usually cheaper because they do not typically have advertising costs included in the price.
The packaging isn’t always exactly overrun with cutesy sayings or gimmicky characters either. Less ink, less cost for the consumer.
Buy your staple foods in bulk, such as oatmeal or rice.
For example, buy the single packets of oatmeal buy the thirty servings size and it’s the same price as the ten single packages. Money.
Purchase your fruits and vegetables that are in season.
The fruits and vegetables that are in season are going to be cheaper and taste better.
Another great way to save money on fruits and vegetables is to buy them frozen. Of course, without any added sugars or salts. This will help them last longer so you won’t be literally throwing away money if you don’t get a chance to eat them. You may think they won’t be fresh but companies actually pick them at their ripest and flash freeze to keep in as many nutrients as possible.
Shop on the outside aisles instead of the middle aisles.
The outside aisles are going to be your fresh fruits and vegetable, eggs, milk, and meats. The middle aisles are going to be your more processed items like seasonings, sweeteners, oats, and rice.
A typical grocery list for the typical college student:
Fruits – bananas, blueberries or strawberries, apples, oranges.
Vegetables – zucchini, broccoli, or asparagus, bell peppers
Carbs -oatmeal, rice, sweet potatoes or red potatoes, whole wheat bread or English muffins, rice cakes.
Protein – chicken, eggs, and egg liquid egg whites, turkey burgers, turkey bacon, and cheese.
Fats – peanut butter, olive oil.
Drinks – flavored sparkling water, almond milk, coffee.
These are my staple foods, meaning that I can make a meal or snack out of any of the above. Most of the time a typical grocery haul costs between $30-$40 dollars. Some of these foods I do not buy every time I go because if I know I will eat it regularly I buy in a bulk size rather than a few servings. Eating healthier does not have to be boring, it can be fun to think of new combinations to think of and make in the kitchen.
Some easy and delicious things to cook:
Sweet potato fries
Oatmeal with fruit
Grilled and seasoned vegetables
Whole wheat toast with peanut butter and banana
Egg white English muffin sandwich
Keeping protein bars on hand is great for convenient snacks.
Libby is currently attending nursing school and is a college athlete participating in the Cheerleading squad. After putting on her “freshman fifteen” Libby knew she was in need of a change. Like many women, she was scared of the free weight section of the gym but fought her fear and started incorporating lifting into her exercise regimen. In no time she could see and feel the results. Through lifting, she has found more confidence than she ever knew she had and she now loves herself.
Want more from Libby? Check out “Friday Night Lights Through the Eyes of A Cheerleader”
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