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9 Useful Tips For Clean Eating On A Budget

By Koty Neelis

One of the common misconceptions about clean eating is that it's expensive. And when you've got a tight budget, meal planning and grocery shopping comes with its challenges. When we say clean eating what we mean is food that’s as close to its natural state as possible. Foods that are processed and packaged are full of artificial ingredients, and though they can taste good in the interim, they ultimately make us feel tired and unproductive later.

If you’ve thought about cleaning up your diet but worried about the price tags on healthy food here are nine easy tips for eating clean without breaking your budget.

1. Have your shopping list ready.

Nothing is worse than walking through a grocery store aimlessly grabbing things and forgetting what you really meant to buy, especially if you're on an empty stomach. Have a plan before you hit the store by researching recipes, writing down ingredients, and taking stock of the everyday foods you eat that you need to replenish. It'll save you time (and money) when you walk into the grocery store prepared and aware of what you're there to get.

2. Know when you can skip the organic.

As more grocery stores make an effort to provide organic and local food to its customers it's easy to think anything with an 'organic' label on it means it's safe, healthy, and worth the extra price. Sometimes, though, organic can actually be worth skipping. Foods that fall under the “dirty dozen” like strawberries, spinach, tomatoes, grapes, and apples, are all produce you want to buy organic since they have the highest levels of pesticides. Foods on the “clean 15” list are all produce items you can buy conventional, like mushrooms, avocados, pineapples, mangos and papaya.

3. Embrace whole grains and buy in bulk.

Buying large quantities of everyday staples like whole grains, beans, nut butters, spices and olive oil can not only help your food budget but it also eliminates waste and packaging. Whole grains like quinoa and brown rice are great bulk buys because they're inexpensive, filling, and double in size when you cook them.