Embarking on a healthier diet can be daunting, especially when money is a factor. I often get asked the question of keeping food costs at a minimum whilst getting all the nutrients and macronutrients needed to fuel your transformation.
Regardless if you are a CEO or a student, cost and convenience will always improve your standard of living - none of us have time to prep 2 hours every day!
How to keep your shopping on the cheap?
Shop around - it's no coincidence that the likes of Aldi and Lidl are smashing it in the supermarket industry at the moment. They are usually selling the same products from the same factories/farms as the higher end supermarkets. A carrot is a carrot.
Markets - the quality is often lower at markets than supermarkets but you can grab some bargain food from your local market stall. In my experience, you can even tell them what you need on a weekly basis and they can throw together a mix bag at a bigger discount.
Buy frozen - frozen veg is nutritionally identical to fresh veg so you can often buy more for less money. As long as you have a freezer you will have less waste and more money for quality proteins.
Don't be fooled by 'high protein' labels - the new marketing fad is to put a 'high in protein' label on food and charge more money compared to an identical product. I have even seen chicken labelled as high in protein.
Buy protein powder - protein powder is generally a lot cheaper than fresh sources of protein like meat and fish. The shelf life is also a lot longer so you don't need to risk throwing away food.
Buy long shelf life foods in bulk - buy big bags of rice or pasta but just keep an eye out for the use by dates.
Buy fresh meat and fish - unfortunately a lot of frozen meats have additional water included in the product therefore once it cooks you will lose up to half of the weight in water.
Don't worry about expensive superfoods - if you are looking to shop on a budget, foods like avocado or cacao are often more expensive than they are beneficial in relation to health.
Buy multivitamins - if you are concerned about consuming enough vitamins and minerals you can buy supplements to supplement your diet. Just be aware that whole foods are always better than a vitamin.
How do I make my diet convenient?
Meal prep - you can prep most of your food ahead of the day. Sunday's are a fantastic day to prep your week's worth of food, be wary that after around 3 days a lot of the food goes a bit manky.
Buy prepared foods - if you need some convenient foods you can't go too wrong with prepared dry foods like protein bars, oat bars, fruit and other convenient snacks.
Buy microwave foods - microwaves are amazing when you are trying to be healthier and don't have time to prep. Microwave bags of rice, prepared proteins and tinned food can all be warmed up in the microwave - no more cold meal preps!
Cook double - if you are already having to cook, try doubling up your portion and splitting in half. You now have 2 meals instead of one.
I hope this helps, feel free to email me at Adamcooley@acptfit.co.uk if you have any additional questions.
Be your best!