One of the biggest challenges I hear from my clients is the cost of healthy food. They want to make better choices and do right by their family by providing them with the most optimal nutrition - but it can be so darn expensive!!
Well, I am always up for a challenge...so I accepted this one!
I decided to challenge myself to 3 weeks of healthy eating on a budget. Food can be expensive, and it seems to be going up each year. If you are anything like me, who loves food and loves to cook, you have to be careful when you go to the grocery store. If I am not paying attention, or go to the store while I am hungry, or without a plan, it is very easy for my food bill to creep up! Especially when you eat fresh foods and need some alternative foods (gluten free bread can be upwards of 10.00 a loaf for a good quality one versus 1.99 for a white loaf of bread). I know I can easily spend $300.00 a week if I am not careful.
The challenge will commence Saturday, January 27, 2018 and will cease on Saturday, February 17, 2018. Hey, I might even want to continue it longer depending on the success of the challenge.
Our family dynamic:
We have a family of 4. It consists of my husband, our two kids (who are almost a year and almost 4 years). I am also nursing so I have a bigger appetite than normal. My kids are very good eaters as well, they even eat more than us sometimes... especially when sweet potato is involved.
The rules of the challenge:
- I will only spend 150 dollars a week in food (This doesn't include any personal care products, food for our dogs or household items).
- Ideally I would consume a 100% organic diet, but this is not feasible on this budget, especially in the winter. Organic generally goes bad a bit faster than conventional farming, I find, as there are less chemicals on it to preserve it. I choose organic where I can and pay special attention to the "dirty dozen" (a list produced each year to let consumers know which fruits and vegetables are contaminated with higher levels of pesticides and herbicides).
- I am very picky about meat, so I would rather eat less meat than poorer-quality meat. So I choose to eat butcher quality or organic meat. If this isn't important for you it is a good area to save money as I do spend more money here because of the meat I eat.
- I generally don't eat out, but if I do it won't be included in the $150.00 budget.
- I will update you on what I eat, have some money-saving tips, and display some pictures on our Facebook group (@thewellnessequation) so make sure you like our page to get the latest updates.
- If I go over our $150.00, I have to take money out of the next week... If I am under the $150.00 I can transfer the balance to the following week.
- We will eat a diet with no refined/process foods, no refined sugar, no dairy (we are sensitive to it), and gluten free (which we are also sensitive to).
- If I already have it in my cupboard I will just estimate the cost of the product I put into my cooking.
Let me know if there are any additional rules or details you would love to see in this challenge, we would love to hear from you!