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Thursday, November 20, 2014

How to Afford Healthy Eating

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The biggest argument people give me when I approach them about trying my Beachbody programs is money.  Money is the root of all our problems, right?

It can also be the root of a lot of excuses.

I try to live by the 70/30 rule.  70% of what I put into my body is clean and 30% is cheat.  From my personal experience I've learned that if I deny myself all sweets and "cheats" then I'm setting myself up for failure...or at the very least a tummy ache from a binge-fest.

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There are obviously more coupons out there for prepackaged foods, boxed items, and beauty products.  However, there are coupons for frozen steamed vegetables, packaged chicken, and sometimes even produce!  In fact, right now there is a $5 rebate when you buy $5 worth of fruit.  FREE fruit!

I also go by the motto: if you save in one place, you can splurge in another.

So, the money I save on diapers, wipes, bodywash, shampoo, etc. can go toward the items that are pricier such as fresh produce, lean meats, and high quality grains.

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Here are some tips for saving money when purchasing healthy food:

Collect coupons.
I have joined a few groups on Facebook where people go to share the deals they're getting, coupons they aren't using, or upcoming sales.  I have a couple of friends who let me go through their coupons after they are done with them and I share my leftovers with them as well.

Get a rewards card.
A lot of people (myself included) just type in their mother's phone number when at the register.  This will get you the instant savings, but you won't receive coupons in the mail or more savings down the road.  Sign up for your own card so that you get the most benefit.

Some favorites: Lowe's Foods, Food Lion, Price Chopper, Harris Teeter, CVS, Walgreens

Register for digital coupons when possible.
Places like Walgreens, Dollar General, and Family Dollar have digital coupons now.  Unfortunately, you can't stack these digital coupons with manufacturer's coupons, but you can use them in place of your manufacturer coupon and save those for another trip.

Watch sales and stock up when you can.
Even when you don't need something, if you can get it for free or close to free, get it!  I currently have a year's supply of toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, and body wash in my linen closet because I paid next to nothing for it.  I also have 3 boxes of cereal sitting in my pantry unopened because I paid less than $1 per box for it.  If you know you are going to use something, stock up!

Know your prices.
Know what prices are good for certain items.  Knowing this will help you decide whether or not you are getting the best deal with your coupons.

Take advantage of the double and super double rule.
Stores like Harris Teeter, KMart, and Lowe's Foods double coupons every day.  Once in a while they do what they call a super double where they double all coupons up to $2!!  It's a little like Black Friday a various points throughout the year in the grocery market.  Totally worth the chaos.

What is your favorite way to save on healthy foods?

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