Article: Stretch your food dollars
Stretch Your Food Dollars Eat Healthy for less
A study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association found that families on weight loss programs not only lost weight, but also lowered their food bill.
The savings resulted from reduced portion sizes and the elimination of high-calorie foods such as potato chips, ice cream, bakery goods, and soda. The key to success, however, is in the planning.
Plan your meals in advance. Check your recipes, take stock of what is in your cupboards, and make your shopping list. Most importantly, STICK WITH THE SHOPPING LIST. Avoid putting those “extras” in your shopping basket. Although it may take a bit more time, clip coupons and match them to your shopping list.
Choose fruits and vegetables that are in season. You can take advantage of these items by buying a bulk quantity and freezing or canning them for later use. Read the newspapers for specials. Purchase a whole chicken or a lean cut of beef and divide into smaller portions for a meal.
When planning your meals, think about how to use your leftovers. If you plan right, you may only have to prepare dinner 3-4 nights a week and have your leftovers on those nights when you are too tired to cook. Also, using frozen vegetables allows you to cook only the amount you need—limiting limit the waste that sometimes occurs when using fresh.
Beans and legumes are a good way to add protein to your diet without using meat. Soups and stews can be prepared ahead of time and stored in the appropriate portion size containers. Cooking meals in a crook pot allows you the convenience of having your dinner ready for you when you get home from work or a day of errands. Use store brands to save money, but be sure to check the nutrition label to ensure they are a healthy choice.
As spring is arriving, this is the perfect time to plant a garden. Not only is it great exercise, but the summer bounty will last all year long if you make an effort to freeze or can your extra produce. There is nothing better than picking fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers and serving them fresh from the garden for dinner.