Food Both Good & Cheap

One of the reasons I started writing this blog is to help people feel better about themselves.  Your confidence and self-worth go beyond the way you see yourself (or simply how you think you look), and have a lot to do with the way you treat yourself, including your speech, internal dialogue, activity levels, and food choices.  You are what you eat, so you might as well invest in yourself.

If you've ever tried it, however, you know eating right and working out can be a challenge.  Even still, the challenge, the effort, and you are worth it.  It might be a daily struggle to make choices that will benefit your body, but you make them to live longer, look better, and, most importantly, feel better every day.

As I've shared previously, just because Danny and I are on a budget, does not mean we don't have the luxury to eat well.  We make sacrifices for what we've determined to be our top priorities--and that includes healthy, organic, gluten-free foods.  Just like everyone on a budget, however, saving money is saving money.  Just like trying to work smarter, not harder, we eat well, but we balance that with making smart choices for our bottom line, too.  Making foods, like fresh juice, smoothies, and preparing most meals at home helps save a tremendous amount.

If you're trying to eat foods that are better for you, you may legitimately struggle with justifying the increased costs associated with fresh, organic, and specialty foods.  I get it.  I am (so) cheap, in most of my life.  Once you begin to make the change to foods that fuel you, however, you'll find you feel better and better, so start small. 

The "Dirty Dozen" list is a great place to start.  Incorporating fresh foods into each meal and snack time will contribute to your wellness, as well.  This may mean sacrificing your favorite packaged items, at first, but give it a try.

If you're still feeling intimidated about how to make a delicious and inexpensive habit happen in your home, check out this amazing cookbook and initiative NYU student Leanne Brown created.   For her Master's project, she researched, wrote, created, photographed, and designed the Good & Cheap cookbook to help families on SNAP (formerly known as Food Stamps) to eat well on $4 a day.  She provides the free PDF of the book and/or you can buy the print copy here.

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If this doesn't give us all hope that we can make it happen, I don't know what will.

Also, as mentioned in 13 {Relatively Small} Ways to Save Money & Help the Environment, I sited a TED Talk, by Graham Hill, regarding becoming a "weekday vegetarian."  Watch it here.  If you want to cut costs and are looking to get healthier, decreasing your household meat intake is an excellent solution.

Lastly, I've posted this video on the Facebook page already, but in case you missed it, it's pretty cool.  They titled it: "Watch How This Supermarket Got People to Buy Their Trash."  I dubbed it "Inglorious Fruits & Vegetables."  There are people out there trying to eat great food for reasonable prices.

Do you have any tips and tricks for others?  What do you do to give your family the best food possible?  Please share suggestions in the comments, on Facebook, or on Twitter.

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