Budget-Friendly Shopping Tips

Eating healthfully can sometimes be expensive, but with some planning, you can easily follow the South Beach Diet and enjoy the foods you love without breaking the bank. Here are five ways to cut down on spending at the grocery store:

  1. Make a list. Before you hit the grocery store, plan the meals you’ll be making for the next two or three days, or even the next week, so you can pick up all the ingredients you’ll need and take advantage of sales.

     

  2. Buy in bulk. When you buy in bulk, you may buy more but you ultimately pay less per pound. If you're buying fresh foods in bulk, make sure you plan to eat them before they spoil or freeze what you can’t use immediately. Otherwise, you're wasting money.

     

  3. Go for beans. It doesn't get any cheaper or healthier than whole, dried beans and other legumes. You can usually buy a 1-pound bag of beans, chickpeas, or lentils, for example, for less than two dollars. Beans can be used in soups, salads, or chilis, or be served as a side dish. And cooked beans freeze really well.

     

  4. Shop at your local farmers’ market. The foods at a farmers’ market are typically fresher than at the supermarket and often cost less in season. Tip: If you’re on a tight budget, wait until the late afternoon to shop there — this is when you are likely to get better bargains, since many vendors prefer not to truck their produce back to the farm.

     

  5. Opt for simple meals. One of the best ways to save money is to keep your meals easy. Serve grilled or broiled meat or poultry as the main dish, for example, with a steamed vegetable and a side salad. Make extra and use the leftovers for lunch the following day.

     

  6. Go out of your way to save. Familiarize yourself with your grocery store circular to see what’s on sale, and take advantage of coupons. You’ll be surprised at how much you can save if you make the effort!

     

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