As you start to buy healthier food, your grocery bill is probably starting to go up and up and up. I budget $400/month for groceries for Kenny and me. That may seem like a lot, but I don’t like to skimp on healthy food. I skimp on lots of other things in our budget (which I will reveal in another post), but I think eating healthy is too important. Also, we go out to eat or get take out food about 2 times a month, so we’re only spending about $50 or less on dining out. Since we are eating almost all our meals at home (approximately 88 meals/month), we need to spend a little more on groceries. But, in the end, we are saving more money than if we went out to eat once a day like I used to do a few years ago. We not only save on dining out, but we save on doctor’s visits, antibiotics, and medications because neither of us get sick often, need to go to the doctor, or use medications. I have not had to take antibiotics or use any medications since I cut dairy out of my diet 2 1/2 years ago (more on this in another post). So I think of it as a trade-off. I’d rather spend more money on groceries than spend more money on healthcare.
Currently, 63% of government subsidies go to meat and dairy, 20% to grains, 15% to sugar, starch, oil, and alcohol, 2% to nuts and legumes, and less than 1% to fruits and vegetables. (To see article on government subsidies by Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine, go here: Food Subsidies.) Until this changes, healthy food is going to be more expensive than we would like. In the meantime, here are some things you can do to decrease your grocery bill without compromising on your health:
- Print online coupons from the store’s website where you shop. (e.g., Whole Foods, Kroger, etc.)
- Kroger has sales all the time on their organic food in their Nature’s Market section. Plus, you can save on gas when you shop at Kroger. When you spend $100 on groceries, you get 10 cents off each gallon of gas. When you spend $200, you get 20 cents, and so on! Check www.kroger.com to see if there is a Kroger near you.
- Check the produce ads before you go in the store to see what fruits and vegetables are on sale.
- Buy in season. Fruits and vegetables will usually cost less when they are in season.
- Buy in bulk when you know you will eat it all.
- Shop at your local Farmer’s Market and ask them to match or beat supermarket prices.
- Use your freezer to preserve food such as sprouted nuts and greens and fruit for your smoothies.
- For lots more healthy savings tips, go here: Frugally Sustainable
- Finally, I have included a Poor Man’s Healthy Grocery List listing healthy food that you can buy for cheap below! You can buy organic and still have a cheap grocery bill!
Poor Man’s Healthy Grocery List
What tricks do you have for saving money while still eating healthy? Leave comments below. I would love to get some new ideas!