Let me share with you one of the most important factors influencing both your budget and your waistline – planning. Over the years, I’ve talked to (at least) hundreds of clients and patients about how to achieve a healthy weight. Without a doubt, their ability to plan was always one of the top reasons they did (or did not) reach their goal.
Let’s be honest, in our society healthy eating doesn’t just happen. It takes effort to feed your family well. I am reminded of this every time I drive around town and am constantly bombarded with temptations: fast food, sweets, donuts (ahhhh, wish they weren't so good!!), dollar menus and the list goes on. It’s almost impossible to resist, unless you have a plan.
Here are my favorite planning tips that help me save money and eat healthy:
- THINK AHEAD. Be real - even though you just ate breakfast, in a few hours you’ll be hungry again. We all are. So, bring a snack. Bring a healthy snack and don’t go through that drive thru…don’t do it! Likewise, pack a lunch if you’re going to be away from home for a while. Pack one for your husband to take to work too.
- MAKE A LIST. Create a menu that will feed your family for the whole week. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, etc. Write all ingredients down on a list and don’t forget it when you go to the grocery store (as I’ve done more times than I care to admit).
- STICK TO THE LIST. Yes, I know the Twix bars are 50% off at checkout and potato chips are buy one, get one free. Don’t do it! Stick to your list! You’ll save money....promise. While we’re on the topic, don’t put candy OR potato chips on your list.
- SHOP ONCE. Shopping only once per week for groceries can be challenging, but will definitely save money in the long run.
- BUY SEASONAL. Whether you chose to buy organic or conventional produce, buy seasonally so you can save money and get the most nutrients from your food.
Here is our weekly dinner menu. Planning this not only helps save money, but allows me serve healthy meals without the last-minute worry about what we’re going to eat.
Do you have any good planning tips? Share the love - post a comment!