Tighten Your Wallet and Your Waist
Using fruits and vegetables as snacks and to fill out
Most families find that their receipts at the grocery store and the drive-thru add up to one of their largest expenses every month. At the same time, families are trying to eat healthier, which many perceive as being more expensive. However, it is possible to both shrink your grocery bill and be more health conscious.
Grocery expenses should be part of the family budget, along with the rest of your monthly expenses. To help you to stick to your budget, consider making meals at home instead of eating out. The average family of four can eat all of their meals at home for the same price as eating out for one meal a day. If you plan ahead, eating at home can be healthier for you, too.
Plan out the meals you are going to prepare before you go shopping. Keep nutritional guidelines in mind while planning your meals; fruits and vegetables should make up half of your daily food intake. Using fruits and vegetables as snacks and to fill out your meals will help you save money and be healthier.
When you have decided on your meals for the week, prepare a shopping list of the ingredients you will need. Fill in other items you will need for the week, and then stick to your list when you go shopping. Make sure to avoid going shopping on an empty stomach. Shopping on an empty stomach leads to impulse buying that can hurt your wallet and your waist.
Be aware of product placements that are designed to highlight the most expensive products. Marketers will place the premium items at eye level where they will grab your attention. Look for cheaper alternatives on the top and bottom shelves. Buying with coupons and sale items can be great way to save money, but only buy items that you would normally buy. Sales are designed to entice you to buy because it seems like a good deal. Compare the price per unit of an item for a better idea of the cost difference between two products.
The average American eats almost five pounds of food per day. However, we still manage to waste more than 200 pounds of food each year. Planning your meals ahead and sticking to your list can help you save big over the year.