You are what you eat right?
The Center for Disease Control acknowledges that there are a multitude of benefits that come from healthy eating. Benefits that include lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, reduced risk for diabetes, obesity, the list goes on and on..
Eating a balanced meal is hard to do, and there are a thousands of different diets and fads claiming that they are the “best”, the “healthiest” or promising to “kickstart your metabolism”.
It can be pretty confusing to sift through all of the bright colored packaging in the grocery store or to figure out what is the “best thing” to eat.
Eating healthy can be simple.
According to the Harvard School of Public Health a healthy diet consists of a balance of four key things:
- Whole grains
There are also healthy plant oils that are important to incorporate into the diet as well. Harvard provides and in depth balanced diet explanation to help break down the percentages and ratios of proper food intake.
Eating, however, is not the hard part of the process. Figuring out what to buy/make/eat is what makes it tricky.
Be prepared, not scared.
Cereal and scrambled eggs for dinner may sound okay for now, but it is not the way to go if you are looking for a healthy, well balanced diet.
It might take a little time and planning but it will make the whole grocery store process that much smoother.
Plan Your Meals.
Before you even go shopping, make a list of what you want to eat for the next few days. Eggs and cereal are fine for breakfast, but you are going to need something more substantial for lunch and dinner.
Platforms like Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook have hundreds of healthy recipe ideas with low budget ingredients and even have communities you can engage.
Finding recipes helps identifying the ingredients needed and can help to inspire you in the cooking process.
Making lists can help you not only be more organized in the grocery store, but also help you budget your money.
Don’t Fall for the Hype.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Studies large corporate owned grocery stores are taking over as people’s main source of food. Large super stores like these are filled to the brim with as many brands and selections as possible, which can be a lot to sift through.
Don’t be distracted by the hype people. Off brand pasta is basically the same as name brand pasta.
They key is look at the ingredients. If the ingredients are the same, the product is the same. Generally the fewer ingredients there are in a product, the less chemicals and preservatives there are present.
The grocery store is a big, scary place. Don’t be afraid. If you have a list, and a strong grasp on what you should and shouldn’t eat, you have nothing to fear.
The more frequently you go, the easier it gets. It will also be easier to plan your budget once you get a better understanding of what different products cost and what products you want to purchase.
Many grocery stores have coupons and weekly sales on certain foods, so don’t be afraid to get familiar with where your food comes from.
Good luck and bon appetite !
Have any more ideas to help make eating healthy in college on a budget easier? Let me know!