8 Tips for Eating Organic on a Budget

By Guest

 

Organic eating on a budget can be both healthy and delicious! 

Conventional animal rearing and agricultural practices expose the food you eat to various chemicals. Several of these chemicals present health risks to us and particularly to children. What can be done about it? The answer is simple- turn to organic food!

Perhaps you've always wanted to eat organic food but have avoided doing so because it costs a lot more. Yes, it sure is expensive, but it isn’t very difficult to stay within the limits of your budget when you turn to organic food. Here are a few tips that will help you get on the right track without stressing you out over money matters.

 

1. Switch Gradually

Your refrigerator and pantry are probably stocked with normal food. Doing away with all of it and buying several organic items at once will put a strain on your pocket. So slow down and take small steps towards going organic.

2. Not Everything Conventional is Harmful

Just because you're switching to organic food, doesn't mean you completely shun conventionally grown produce. Several fruits and vegetables that are grown conventionally have a low amount of pesticide residue in them and are okay to be eaten. These include grapefruit, mango, kiwi, papaya, pineapple, avocado, sweet potato, sweet peas, sweet corn, cauliflower, cabbage, onion, eggplant, cantaloupe, and asparagus.

On the other hand, certain fruits and vegetable have high levels of pesticide residue in them. Examples are apples, peaches, grapes, strawberries, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet bell peppers, spinach, and celery.

If you can't memorize the list, simply remember to go organic for fruits and vegetables that have thin skins and won't be peeled before consuming. Non-organic produce with thick skins that you'll be peeling off and discarding won't be of as much concern.

Read more about pesticides on produce

3. Learn to Read Food Labels

When it comes to other food items, see if you can find cheaper alternatives. To pick what's best for you, it'll help if you know how to read food labels.

Items labeled as '100% Organic' are completely organic, whereas only 95% and 70% of the total ingredients are organic in items labeled as 'Organic' and 'Made with Organic Ingredients' respectively. If you find food labeled as 100% Organic too costly, consider the other types. People on a budget might not be able to buying organic milk. But that doesn't mean one has to give up milk entirely. Just look for milk labeled as hormone-free; it won't burn a hole in your pocket. If you eat meat, go for cuts labeled as 'Organic' or 'Grass Fed'. Meat labeled as '100% Grass Fed' will be the costliest.

4. Forget the Supermarket

And head to your local farmer's market. You'll be able to get items for a lot cheaper there. What's more, fruits and vegetables purchased from a farmer's market taste a lot better than store-bought ones!

If you’re lucky, you might get to buy misshapen produce that tastes perfectly fine at an even lower price. Be sure to ask questions and you won’t regret your purchase.

5. If at the Supermarket, Forget the brands.

Doing so will save you from paying for fancy packaging. Look around the store; there's sure to be a package-free dispenser for items such as cereal, coffee, beans, nuts, and lentils.

Your local store may have its own line of organic products for sale. Consider purchasing these; they'll be much cheaper than branded organic items. Additionally, buy from the bulk aisle if you have the space at home. And do keep your eyes open for special offers, promotions, coupons, and free samples. These can help you save a lot!

Remember that you don’t have to buy all that you need from a single store. Pay visits to as many stores and supermarkets as you can and find out where you can get the best deal for items that you need.

6. Buy Seasonal Produce

By purchasing produce only when it is in season, you can save a lot of money. Items like corn, strawberries, peas, carrots, etc. can be bought in bulk and then kept frozen to be used as and when required throughout the year. Alternatively, if you don’t want to buy in bulk, you can always buy canned or frozen items when they are not in season.

7. Grow Your Own

You don’t need to have a big garden or backyard to grow your own organic fruits and vegetables. You can grow a lot of stuff in a small space. If you don’t have space at all, consider items that will grow well in pots. Even if you can plant a couple of herbs that you use regularly, you’ll be doing yourself a huge favor.

Read more about fruits and veggies to plant with kids

8. Cook Whatever You Can

You might not be able to find several items like applesauce, peanut butter, ketchup, etc. labeled as 100% Organic. In case you do, they might cost a lot.

So what do you do? Simply make them at home! These condiments are very easy to cook and the ingredients that go into making them can be bought cheap. You also know what exactly you’re putting in to make the condiment so there’s nothing to worry about.

Conclusion

Now that you know these simple tips, you don’t have to go on eating food that has been treated with pesticides and hormones. Just be sure that whatever you’re buying isn’t simply labeled as organic but is actually organically grown or raised. Look for the right labels, and always buy from trusted retailers. Happy shopping!

[Editor's Note: If you want more help saving money on organic and non-GMO foods, click here to sign up for a Naturally Savvy Get Healthy Challenge and get access to coupons.]


Written by Lauri Pete. Lauri is a health and beauty blogger and journalist. She loves sharing her opinions on the latest issues affecting women and recommends the use of free samples of health products.

Image: Whole Foods Market®

shopOrganic&shopGMOfree&For The Greater Goods


By Guest| April 10, 2015
Categories:  Eat

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