As a certified health coach, giving my family the healthiest start possible is something I am very passionate about. To me, that means eating organic is a priority. I simply can’t stand the idea of having my family consume pesticides and GMO’s in the foods that are supposed to be nourishing them. That being said, eating organic can be a pricey lifestyle. To me, it’s all about priorities. My family’s health and wellness is a top priority for me, so I allocate a bit more of my family’s budget toward food. However, I believe the money and heartache we save in doctor’s bills more than makes up for the additional expenditure on organic food.
To make eating organic a bit less traumatic on the wallet (and on my time/effort), there are some simple strategies I use that I would like to share. Please see below for some great ideas that can help you incorporate more organic foods into your family’s lifestyle.
- Organic coupons are not usually readily available in your regular coupon circular. You have to seek them out (usually online). Search the internet for coupons on your favorite brands. Some of your favorite stores (like Whole Foods) may also offer coupons online on their websites (click here to visit Whole Foods’ coupon page).
- Buying frozen organic produce can often be cheaper than buying fresh. If there are produce staples that you use regularly, it pays to compare the price of fresh vs. frozen. Frozen can also be more convenient, and allow you to buy large quantities whenever you see a sale on an item you might use frequently.
- Planning is key! Planning your meals ahead gives you a clear shopping list when you go to the store. This will make you less likely to impulse buy. I also find it helpful to check what’s on sale before coming up with my weekly menu/shopping list to be sure I can incorporate the items that are better deals into my plan for the week.
- It’s not always possible for everyone to afford eating organic 100% of the time. This means you will have to prioritize and be sure to buy the organic version of the most offensively toxic items. I believe the organic MUST haves are meat, dairy, corn, soy, eggs and the “dirty dozen” produce. If you are buying conventional meat and dairy – you are consuming foods loaded with antibiotics, hormones and pesticides. If you cannot afford to eat organic meat and dairy, I suggest cutting down the amount you eat. Incorporating more plant based proteins like beans, lentils and quinoa can be easier on your wallet, and ultimately better for your overall health.
- Buy local. Locally grown produce and meats are typically less expensive, as the transportation costs are much lower. In addition, you are helping keep the air cleaner with less smog and you are supporting a local farmer and their family instead of a big conglomerate.
- Start a garden! This can be really fun – especially if you have children. Working together as a family in the garden is a great way to spend time together. I also find that children are much more likely to eat fruits and vegetables that they had a hand in growing themselves.
- Buy in bulk! I use a service that delivers 6 months of frozen organic meats, produce and pantry items at a time. This not only keeps my pricing low, but also saves me a TON of time. I rarely have to go to the store, as I have a full selection of meats and produce readily available in my freezer. I also get fresh organic produce delivered weekly. This may sound like a luxury, but I find that the time (and gas) I save by having my food delivered far outweighs the additional cost of the food itself.
I hope you will find some of these tips helpful. As I mentioned, I really believe that eating organic should be a priority. Not only is it better for your body and the environment, but the food tastes SO much better!
DISCLAIMER: The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only. The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional. You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.