Food Budget & Healthy Eating

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Since I’ve started sticking to a budget to help fund my travels this year, one of the things I’ve started cutting is my food spending and eating out. The eating out I can handle. I don’t really need to go to Starbucks on weekends, it was just a nice break from the norm I guess. Eating out will now just be for special occasions like group parties. However, the harder part: grocery shopping. Which I actually think will be good for me. I always just go to the grocery store and pick out foods I felt like eating and often hit the grocery store several times a week if I was like craving some yogurt that I didn’t have at home. It’s a work in progress, but I’m trying to keep my food budget under $40 a week. A lot of food to be bought (and pretty much everything else I buy) is going to be on sale or “clearance.” And when I mean clearance on foods, I know that most grocery stores have a selection where they discount food like bread, cheese & meat that’s going to expire within two to three days. Get discount meat, cook it right away and prepare meals to freeze.

I already do a meals prep-day on Sunday so that I don’t have to prepare my lunch every morning. And since taking out dairy out of my meals and snacking, I’ve been trying to fill the void with lots of fruit and protein bars. It’s really hard since I love cheese and greek yogurt. But my guts has been so happy with me lately.

Most of the food I’m buying will require me to do a bit more prep work like cutting up my carrots, not buying the precut baby ones. Soooo, here is a sample of my weekly grocery shopping list:

Veggies // Carrots, cucumber, bell peppers, bagged salads (I get them from Freddy’s for like 88¢ a bag!), broccoli, green beans, mushrooms, onions, spinach, bean sprouts, sweet potatoes / yams, potatoes, tomatoes (wait, isn’t tomatoes a fruit?), avocado & seasonal veggies

Fruits // Apples, pears, bananas, lemons, grapefruit (citrus is in season right now, yum!) & other seasonal fruits

Pantry // Canned tuna, brown rice, quinoa, apple sauce, coconut milk, olive oil, hot sauce, mustard, diced tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, apple cinder vinegar, protein bars, tea / coffee, beans & whole wheat/grain bread (Franz makes a great vegan bread that I can only currently find at Freddy’s)

Fridge // almond milk & eggs (yeah, since taking our dairy, that’s all I get from the fridge section. I miss cheese.)

Freezer // Frozen bag of veggies, frozen bag of strawberries & boca burgers

Now I don’t get all of these every grocery shopping day, just the ones that I can find on sale and I have completely ran out of. And I am not eating a lot of meat at the moment either. Just testing to see if it makes a difference in my goal to lose this belly fat. I scan all the local grocery store flyers online before I hit them up and I make a list. MAKE A LIST. It really helps you stick to your budget!

I do buy myself “treats” but I try to get them in a single serving size. And I’ll go full out, none of that health snacks. I much rather treat myself to the real thing once in a blue moon and then go right back to my healthy eating style.

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