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Frugal Friday: Healthy Eating on a Budget

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Frugal Friday: Healthy Eating on a Budget

Frugal Friday healthy eating

It’s Frugal Friday!  The time when we take a few moments to focus on tips and hints for frugal living.

Today, let’s take a look at healthy eating on a budget.  I’ve heard some people say that they don’t bother with coupons because coupons are just for processed food.  While there’s some truth to that idea, it doesn’t mean that there’s no place for coupons in a healthy or organic diet.  Here are a few ideas to keep in mind:

  • Everyone needs to brush their teeth:  Use coupons and work the drugstore deals on non-food items.  If you pay less (or better yet, nothing) for personal care items like toothpaste, deodorant, and toilet paper, you have that much more to put toward fresh produce.
  • Watch for sales & deals on frozen produce: It’s pretty rare to find coupons for fresh produce, but we frequently see deals for frozen veggies and fruit.  Frozen fruit and veggies have the same nutrition as fresh–they’re frozen soon after picking, so they retain their freshness.  It’s nice to be able to fill in the gaps when fresh or organic are a little pricey.
  • Watch savings apps apps for produce deals: Checkout 51, Ibotta, and SavingStar are having more and more fresh produce offers–read them carefully, and they’re pretty easy to redeem!
  • Watch for coupons on organic and natural food:  They’re fewer and farther between than coupons for processed food, but they do exist.  If you find a few brands that you like, check their web sites, subscribe to their email newsletters, and “like” them on Facebook to keep up with the latest offers.
  • Print coupons and sign up for perks if you shop at organic/natural stores:  Both Earth Fare and Whole Foods have printable coupons, and Earth Fare has a loyalty program that helps you earn points toward discounts on your groceries.  Make sure to take full advantage of these options, and check our matchups (under the “More” tab at the top of the site) for Earth Fare, Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s.
  • Try Amazon: It might be unexpected, but Amazon has a huge selection of natural and organic products.  They frequently run sales and coupons, and many of them are part of the Subscribe and Save program, which means you can get them for even bigger discounts.  If there are non-perishable products you use regularly, it could be worth checking on Amazon’s sale prices occasionally.
  • Shop local, and shop in-season: Stock up on healthy produce when it’s in season, and find ways to help it last–Sara and I both pick produce at pick-your-own farms, and try to freeze enough blueberries to last all year.  My family buys a 1/4 cow from a local farmer, and I know that our family’s beef for the year comes from a place I can trust.
  • Grow a garden:  If you have room in your yard, try out your green thumb skills.  You can grow what your family will eat (and they might be game for trying more things if they have a hand in growing them!).  You can also have more control over how your food is grown, so you won’t have to worry about pesticides or other chemicals.
  • Prepare more of your own food rather than opting for convenience foods:  Not only is this more frugal, but it helps you avoid processed convenience foods and limit the stuff that you don’t want to eat.  Meal planning can really help simplify this part of the equation!

How do you combine a healthy lifestyle with frugal living?  Do you combine couponing with eating naturally/organically?  Share your ideas in the comments or on Facebook.  Thanks for sharing!

If you’re just joining the Frugal Friday series, check out these other posts:

Megan has been frugal most of her life, but has been really honing her frugal skills as the chief home economist for her family of six, surviving and thriving on a single (teacher’s!) income.  If she can do it, you can too!

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