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Healthy Eating on a Budget

Before you make the trip to the grocery store give some thought to how you can get the most for your money. There are many ways to save money on groceries, but it takes planning. Due to our busy schedules we often fail to plan our meals in advance and end up choosing fast-foods.

Taking time to plan our meals for the week is one of the best ways to save money and create healthy meals. Start with checking to see what foods you have on hand and planning your meals for the week around those items. Then make a list for the items that you need to buy. Now, where will you do your grocery shopping? Remember to consider all your local options… supermarkets, warehouse stores, and farmers markets. If going to a supermarket be sure to check store ads for sales and coupons that you may be able to take advantage of. This is especially important for meat and seafood which are often times the most expensive items on your shopping list. If you are looking for healthy low-cost options for protein try incorporating beans into some of your meals for the week. Shopping for fruits and vegetables that are in season can lower your grocery bill and add lots of fresh healthy flavors to meals. Pre-cut vegetables and other convenience foods are often going to cost more, take the time to prepare them yourself and save.

For more information and resources to help you eat healthy on a budget visit https://www.choosemyplate.gov/budget or contact Annie Sheldon at the University of Florida/IFAS Extension Clay County at 904-284-6355 or aasheldon@ufl.edu.