Let’s be real. For some of us, eating all organic and planning all our meals is ideal, but isn’t practical or realistic. If you’re anything like me, you’ve walked through the grocery store, picked up that organic something-or-other, then looked at the price and swiftly set it back down. Only to then go pick up that package of Oreos that will comfort the defeat you feel in not being able to afford a healthy lifestyle...People, there is still hope!

My husband, son and I got our antioxidant levels scanned not so long ago, and after seeing the scores we decided to simply add some more colorful fruits and veggies to our diets, as well as eating out less. After about a month, we got scanned again, and our scores had increased significantly! All we did was eat more fruits and veggies--not even organic, mind you. We had tangible evidence of the benefit of eating more mindfully!

While I recently made some changes in our budget and schedule to allow for a more organic palate of food (because I have a conspiracy-theorist mindset that SOMEONE is trying to kill us with food...specifically the chemicals in food), I’ve spent a lot of time doing the best with what we had--which meant not eating organic. But still meant providing myself and my family with the most healthful nutrition we could compose with our budget. And I wanted to share some tips with you all on how to eat relatively healthy, without breaking the bank. So here goes!

  1. Stop buying packaged foods. You can do the research for yourself, but just know that FRESH is best. Seriously, what are Cheeze-Its made of really? And what in the world allows packaged foods to last as long as they do, anyway? That scares the hell out me! Which brings me to my next point…

  2. Buy fruits, veggies, nuts, granola, etc. for snacks instead. Baby carrots, snap peas, grapes, and other produce make excellent refreshing snacks through the day. And nuts are especially satisfying (I’m trying not to think of that inappropriately...Yeah, not happening). The bulk section at Winco is great for stocking up on nuts and dried fruits, as well as pretzels and the like. And it won’t cost you a fortune either. You might even find that it saves you some money!

  3. Prepare as many meals as you can at home. This is the absolute BEST way to save money! Eating out is so overpriced, and compromises the health of the food that you’re putting into your body. And you have no way of knowing what is actually going into that food, let alone what shortcuts are being taken to make a larger profit off your purchase.

  4. And making meals at home doesn’t have to be difficult! Hard-boil some eggs and make a large batch of oatmeal for the week’s breakfast. Keep it simple with sandwiches and fruit for lunch, and for dinner, whip up a simple salad or soup. Pre-cook your meats so you add them to virtually any meal. Cooking in large quantities is worth the ease it brings you throughout your days.

  5. When it comes to seasoning, all you need for a tasty dish are the following: garlic (fresh or powder), salt, and pepper. Also, add turmeric and ginger to anything! You can do the research for yourself, but they are excellent in the way of more healthful nutrition.

  6. Lastly, drink more WATER! Nothing hydrates you better, not does anything clean out your system better. Forego those sodas a little more often...It’ll be worth it in the long run, for your health and your pocketbook!

I hope that is as easy for you as it has been for me! For more meal planning help, ask us about our Wild Wild Beauty meal planning guide It’s super easy to use and makes shopping a breeze!