How to Eat Healthy on a Budget

This is a guest page by Joel Newman.

Most foodies live to eat! For the rest, other priorities take over where buying a new home, refurbishing, going on a vacation, etc. For this second category of people food is a means of sustenance. They eat to live. Occasionally they’ll indulge in a sumptuous meal and take delight in pampering their taste buds. Then, we also have some who are calorie conscious. The last two categories most probably look out for healthful food that also fits their budget!

The hip and happening throw parties every other day, and serve exotic food, along with wine and desserts. But some others prefer healthful meals and will stick only to the occasional treat they give loved ones on anniversaries, upon getting a promotions etc. Somewhere in between, lies a group that grabs a bite while taking the elevator or while going through files! The question is, is it possible to eat nutritious food on a budget? Yes! It is possible. The answer is to keep abreast of a few facts regarding your needs, your weight, your schedule and your budget!

Healthful diet is a wholesome diet which comprises proteins, vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, starch and fats. When you maintain this wholesomeness, you need not bother about your health, weight and budget. This holds water even for pill-popping individuals.

Show off your green thumb!

You may be living in an apartment or may own a spacious mansion. Do you have a patch for gardening? Maybe a window sill? Grow your own veggies! A few plants like tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, aubergines, potatoes, lady’s finger, beans, bitter gourd creeper, and herbs like lemon, lemon grass leaves, mint, cilantro, basil, garlic, onions can be cultivated. Avoid using chemical fertilizers and pesticides.

Dig a pit and empty all organic waste into it. Organic waste includes, fruit and vegetable peels, paper, cotton, leave, dried leaves, eggs shells, leftover meat etc. Cover this waste with a layer of soil to which earthworm eggs are added. Cover with another layer of dried cow-dung. When they decompose, a black substance called humus will form on the top, indicating the soil is fertile. Sow seeds of veggies and watch them grow. Whenever you need, pluck your veggies and include them in your cooking!

This way, you don’t have to shop for veggies and you also get to consume farm-fresh chemical free food! If you have a large patch, depending on the climate, you can maintain an orchard. Apples, pear, plum, oranges, guavas, strawberries, oranges are fruits that can be grown. Pluck these fruits for fresh juice, fruit punch, jams, squashes and desserts. A vineyard looks pretty too. Edible mushrooms can be cultivated too. Ensure your garden is chemical free!

The proverb, “Breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper holds true always.” Start your day with green tea. Include scrambled eggs, as eggs are rich in proteins and full of vitamins. Proteins give you muscle strength.

As far as possible avoid fried food. Go raw. Salads of both vegetable and fruits are loaded with antioxidants and vitamins. Include spinach that is rich in iron. Munching raw fruits increases your intake of fiber. Use olive oil as it’s rich in Vitamin A, D, K and E.

How to eat?

Your science teacher might’ve told you that chewing food helps easy digestion. That apart, when you chew and munch properly, instead of gulping, hunger gets satiated too. When you chew, your saliva mixes with food and inevitably your hunger is satiated. This will prevent you from overindulging.

Water the elixir of life

Drinking water not only keeps you well hydrated, but also is good for digestion, prevents constipation, keeps your skin supple and flushes toxins from the body. Drinking adequate water keeps hunger at bay. Drinking cold water just before meals shrinks the stomach!

Curb meat tooth!

Including meat in your diet is not only heavy on your purse, but also leaves you battling the bulge. Restrict non-vegetarian food to the weekends.

Dine in simple restaurants that offer healthful food, than the classy ones that stock rich food.

Arrange for a family get-together where every family prepares and brings snacks.

An ideal breakfast should have sandwich that includes brown bread, cucumber, potatoes, onion, beet and tomato. Include scrambled eggs or oats. Flush it with orange juice or green tea.

Include cereals and sprouted pulses for lunch and finish off with fresh fruits for desserts.

Substitute fried food with nuts while you sip your tea.

Retire for the night with a simple dinner that includes whey, cereals and fruits.

Exercise and yoga help you shed extra calories!

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