Nutrition-Bites-Healthy-Eating-on-a-Budget

Nutrition Bites: Healthy Eating on a Budget

Contrary to popular belief, eating healthy doesn't have to be more expensive, and the Eat Dat! Cookbook by the Tulane Prevention Research Center is here to tell you how to have a balanced diet and a balanced checkbook. Eat Dat! Cookbook features healthy and delicious recipes, the cost of each ingredient and serving, and the nutrition information for every dish. Get a jump-start on saving money and eating healthy by following these four tips.

Plan meals
Meal planning is one of the best ways to stick to a tight budget. It can also ensure a balanced diet, prevent overeating, and reduce the money spent on eating out. When meal planning think about breakfast, lunch, dinner, and don't forget a healthy snack! After meals have been planned for the week, make a list of the ingredients you need and stick to it.

Chose smaller portions of meat
Meat is often the most expensive part of the grocery bill and most people consume over the recommended amount. While it is a great source of protein, the American Heart Association recommends limiting red meat intake and choosing more low-fat options including legumes, or beans, which can contain up to 16 grams of protein per cup! Try these Bean Burgers instead of hamburgers to improve your diet and save money.
o Bean Burger, page 47 in Eat Dat! Cookbook

Shop in season
Shopping in season is a great way to save money because Grocery stores and farmers markets often have markdowns and sales for items that are in season. Not only will shopping in season save money, produce will often taste better and be richer in nutrients. Try the Farmers' Market Root Vegetable Salad, which features fall and winter vegetables.
o Farmers' Market Root Vegetable Salad, page 32 in Eat Dat! Cookbook
Finally, freeze in season and leftover produce to use later in the year. Eat Dat! Cookbook features great ways to freeze and reuse produce.

Replace soda with water
Sodas have approximately 100-200 calories per serving and can cost up to $1.50. That means drinking one soda a day for one year can add up to 10 pounds and cost around $550. However, water has zero calories, is virtually free, and is essential for daily living. Make the switch by carrying a reusable water bottle, and gradually reducing soda intake.

For more recipes and ways to eat healthy on a budget, check out the Eat Dat! Cookbook available at bit.ly/EatDatRecipes.

By Kelsey Rosenbaum MS, RD, LDN
(Nutrition Bites is a recurring feature in the Tulane PRC's e-newsletters and covers nutrition and health tips from Kelsey Shanklin, MS, RD, LDN. If you have any suggestions for Nutrition Bites topics, please contact Naomi Englar at nking2@tulane.edu or 504-988-7410.)

(Photo courtesy of Tulane New Wave. To read the New Wave story about the Eat Dat! Cookbook, click here.)

Topics:   nutrition , diet , obesity , health communication

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