January 25, 2013

The Cost of Eating Healthier

This month my husband and I are making a conscious effort to become healthier.  I work out at Curves and before I go to my work out, I mall walk as fast as I can for 45 minutes.  Fortunately Curves is located in our mall which is quite convenient for me.

We started making a few subtle changes back in the fall but in December we began watching our sodium intake and we became diligent about reading those food labels.  I have posted about some of our food decisions here and under the healthy eating label.   What am I learning?  That I really need to be careful with grocery spending and put the money where the healthier food choices are such as fresh produce AND I need to make as much from scratch as possible. 

The pit fall to this is that if I take on too much all at once, I will become overwhelmed.  I am taking baby steps. 

Tonight I decided to try those indigo blue potatoes that I have seen in the produce section of the grocery store.  They were $3.99 for a 1.5 lb. bag.  Yikes.  I bought them because I wanted to have something different and frankly, they intrigued me.  I sliced these thin, tossed them with a little olive oil, sodium free barbecue seasoning and a smidgen of sea salt.  They were delicious and pretty.

We had ground chicken burgers for dinner also and I wanted to serve them with healthier buns than the normal burger buns.  The cost?  $3.69 for 8 buns that have 5 grams of fiber and 1/3 less calories than regular wheat burger buns.  Double Yikes.

I wanted ice cream for a treat.  I haven’t had ice cream in a very long time and I wanted chocolate ice cream.  Normally I would have purchased the on sale store brand 1/2 gallon of ice cream.  I am reading labels now and I ended up buying the name brand that comes in a 1.5 quart container and it only had 5 ingredients – all recognizable to me.  The cost?  $5.89.  Triple Yikes.

I would never have made these kind of purchases in the past, and I won’t be making these in the future.  Some people on a whim head to a restaurant, I on a whim headed to the grocery store and spent a high premium amount of money on 3 items.

So, what does this have to do with “The Path to Frugality?”  After all I made some high price purchases for three items today.  Well, I am going to be making my own ice cream from now on.  I am saving up for an ice cream attachment to my Kitchenaid mixer .  This special bowl will be kept in my freezer ready to be used.  Perfect for making ice cream and perfect for not taking up space in my cupboards.  I want to make ice cream that has things like blueberries and blackberries in it. 

I have baked my own honey whole wheat bread in the past but I am researching recipes for high fiber, multi-grain bread that I can bake in loaves, buns and rolls.  Making my own will be oh so much cheaper and again, I will know what ingredients will actually be going into the bread.  The same goes to researching recipes for healthier pasta.

And, I can save in other areas of our budget by making my own safer cleaners and soaps for our family.  I am still on and will continue to be on "The Path to Frugality."


Rose said...

It's been so long since I've commented on your blog. Rest assured, I have been reading, although not as frequently. I love your updated picture!

We, too, have been watching what we eat, as both hubby and I have packed on about 5 pounds each over the holidays! It is so easy to put on, and so hard to take off. I have found that low carb eating has been very helpful in getting the scale moving downward for both of us. Rather than lowfat, nonfat, chemical laden foods, we eat whole foods(yes, whole sour cream, etc), which fill you up and satisfy you, so you actually eat less because you haven't filled up on "fillers" and chemicals, which leave you hungry. But low carb is key. Very little bread, cereal, pasta, etc and lots of salad/veggies and proteins, including dairy and nuts. Just a thought for you. It is healthy and you are not hungry.

You are so right about those treats being so expensive. Have you paid attention to ANY prices lately? We love to splurge now and then, but it can sure put a dent in your budget. I will make homemade puddings, tarts, crisps, etc, to satisfy those cravings.

BTW, I am in my 2nd year of teaching at the private school that I was so blessed to get (Thank you St. Therese). I hope to be there for a long time. The commuting bill kills our gas budget since DH has the same commute but with different hours. But we will take our blessings as they are gifted to us.

Blessings, Martha

moi aussi said...

I like your blog. I try to spend little on groceries, but at the same time eat the best foods. Do you have an Aldi? They are inexpensive and have good foods. I find that I will try to find a coupon for the one really special thing that I like (the ice cream) and that makes it an even bigger treat.

Rhonda said...

hope you are ok? you have not blogged in awhile and I hope you are just busy living your life.

Martha said...

@ moi aussi - No we do not have an Aldi in our commumity. We had an Aldi store years ago but it closed when the Super Walmart opened up as people thought Walmart was naturally cheaper. NOT!!! When I drive through a community where I know there is an Aldi, I make a planned shopping trip and stock up.