Trying to budget and eat well during this pandemic may be the last thing on your mind. Comfort food – on the other hand- may easily be the first. Chances are, you’ve experienced thoughts of “I’ll change my diet later, I know it’s important but right now all I care about is eating this donut, cake, chips, fast-food.” You name it. We all have certain foods we crave in times of uncertainty – usually sugary or salty.
Did you know, the more you “flex your will power muscle” and choose healthier foods, the more money you can save and you can actually find a greater sense of well-being along the way? Doing so in the beginning is a challenge but if you keep the long run picture in mind, getting started – and staying on your path gets easier – faster than you might think.
Shop safely and budget smart by shopping online:
Make use of online shopping websites to shop for groceries. View current sales online and pick your groceries or having them delivered up without risking exposure in the store. While you shop, you are able to see your total bill and adjust accordingly to stay on budget.
1. Go to Instacart.com to shop and save.
2. To begin, download the Instacart app or visit the website to “shop” from home. Stores like Aldi, Publix and Walmart deliver right to your home or you may choose the “pick up” option.
3. Stretch your dollar and limit your exposure by keeping it simple:
· Check your fridge before you shop and make a diligent list. Stick to your list to avoid impulse buys.
· Stay on track and to your list by choosing the produce department as soon as you log on. Start your shopping trip in the produce section and stick to those foods found in the store’s perimeter.
· As you shop, you can easily track sales to save money easily!
· Check your total before you buy to make adjustments to your cart. Anything that made it in the cart that does not support wellness should be removed – Save yourself the money and support your immune system with this step!
4. Shopping for health and saving money: Look for fruit and veggies that are on sale.
· Buying what’s on sale will encourage you to try new things as your regular choices may not be on sale.
· Avoid throwing out fresh food by checking to see how fresh the produce is.
· When you place your order, request that your shopper choose under-ripe so your food will last longer.
· Frozen veggies are hard to find right now – Make your own by blanching broccoli and cauliflower then storing in a freezer container.
5. No ones like wasting food! To avoid throwing things away that are fresh:
· Purchase meat that is on sale and freeze extra to be thawed for later.
· Put veggies in the fridge in the lower drawers.
· Cut up veggies into usable portions when you get home for ease of grab-and-go and to make it more appetizing to grab them as a snack instead of chips/processed snack foods.
· Avoid buying processed foods like cookies, candies cakes keeping in mind the money you save is being used for healthy foods that will increase your immune system, maintain a healthy weight and support well-being.
TIP! Save up your order to be sure to spend more than $35.00 for FREE Delivery!
Prepare to have your groceries delivered to save the risk of exposure of going to the store so you can stay home and stay safe!
While being quarantined and having our daily routine limiting is stressful, it is an opportunity to evaluate the way we purchase foods and budget on a daily basis. Spending time now to become more aware of our regular consumption of food and how much we spend, we have the opportunity to change and make new, healthy habits that will support us for a lifetime. You may even find your new way of shopping for groceries will make time for other wellness opportunities when things return to normal!