It isn’t easy when you are trying to lose weight, and between finding the motivation to move more and finding the time to prepare nutritious food, it can start to seem impossible. However, it is important that you maintain a healthy weight for your overall fitness and wellbeing. Being overweight can increase your chances of suffering from health conditions, such as diabetes and heart disease. Therefore, it is important that you try to shed those extra pounds and start to feel better about yourself.
Eating healthy often costs more than eating quick and convenient food, and for those of us on a tight budget, buying fresh food every day is unrealistic. However, it is possible to eat healthily and lose weight, while remaining on a tight budget by shopping around and preparing your meals in advance. If you want to lose weight but are worried about how much it will cost, then checkout my guide on everything you need to help you lose weight while living on a strict budget.
Preparing several meals ahead of time ensures you have a ready-made healthy meal or snack when you’re hungry and encourages you to buy healthy foods in bulk and use them right away so you waste less.
Here are some simple ideas for getting into the budget-conscious meal-prep habit:
- “Learn how to cook one large batch of shredded chicken/pork or lentils/beans and transform them into two to three completely different meals,” suggests Lindsay Livingston, R.D., creator of the Lean Green Bean healthy recipe blog.
- Learn how to make Portion Fix-approved shredded chicken, beans, and lentils with these recipes: Slow Cooker Chicken Tacos, Rainbow Lentil Bowls, and Slow Cooker Refried Beans.
- Use a slow cooker or Instant Pot to make soups, stews, pulled meats, stewed fruit (delicious in overnight oats or mixed with plain oatmeal), beans, lentils, and ancient grains. Pro tip: Get beans and lentils from the bulk bins — it’s cheaper than canned or already-cooked versions).
- Cook a dozen hard-boiled eggs on the weekend to use throughout the week as part of breakfast or a snack; add to salads or whole-grain bowls.
- Skip the pre-cut vegetables and fruits at the grocery store. They may be more convenient, but they’re also more expensive than doing the chopping yourself. Make sure you know how long you can store fresh vegetables and fruits so nothing goes to waste.
Plan Your Meals
We often find ourselves reaching for high-calorie foods when we haven’t organized or plans our meals, so it is worth planning what you are going to eat at the beginning of each week. On a Sunday evening, you should plan out your breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the next 7 days so that you know exactly what food you need to buy from the grocery store and what meals you need to prepare. This just isn’t helping you to save money, it also helps you to stick to your weight loss plan as you can prepare and schedule your meals around your work and personal commitments. Once you have planned your meals and made the list of ingredients you need to buy, you can go to the supermarket and avoid the temptation to buy fatty and unhealthy foods.
Find the Best Deals
Often the best way to save money is to shop around for the best deals on the items you usually buy. You may find that a competitor to the grocery store that you usually use has an offer on products that are on your shopping list. It makes sense to shop around, as even though it can take a little bit longer, it can save you a considerable amount of money. Use the internet to help you find deals on things like health and wellness products too before you head out to the shops.
Avoid Eating Out
By grabbing foods when you are out and about, your food bill can soon start adding up. You should avoid eating out wherever possible and instead eat the food that you have at home. While grabbing a small snack may not seem like a lot of money, at the end of each month you may be surprised at how much you have spent. Prepping and eating snacks at home not only saves on your budget but also
It is important that you don’t let the cost of healthy eating put you off or get in the way of you losing weight. Instead, by making simple and small changes, you may be surprised at how cheaply you can eat healthy foods and start achieving your weight loss dreams.