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is being healthy and not broke, a thing?

how to shop clean and save those dolla dolla bills ya'll

THE number one, most common, complaint about eating healthy is that it is expensive. And not just a little expensive; like hella expensive. let's be real, unless your grandfather invented Post Its OR you promised your first born child to a wizard it can be challenging to get your hands on fresh, real food without sacrificing living indoors or running water.

I mean, come the fuck on. We have to choose whether to ingest chemical by products and things that aren't even food (quickly google Castoreum) or pay our car note. It's insane and I ain't having it. I REFUSE to go broke in order to not be I have dedicated this post to tips and strategies to keep those benjamins in your wallet a little longer.

just some TIPS

saving money, at least for me, sometimes involves a mind game with myself. I have to trick "impulsive nicole" (you know the one that will buy $10 grain free pasta if she ain't on a leash, hey!) into shopping smarter. here are some thangs, that helped this babe save a little dough.

- plan your trip

bringing a list is critical. It helps keep me on track at the store, I will get exactly what I need, no more or no less. I start my list by thinking of roughly 4-5 meals for the week, keep it lose though because we shop the sales too. I walk through each of those mealsin my head and mylk, eggs, school snacks, avocados, etc and make sure those are accounted for.

- get to know your local grocery stores and markets

this is key. I really started saving money when I stopped shopping out of convenience and started really comparing prices at a few different places. We go to 2 stores for our groceries and then if we need stuff like toilet paper, etc we go to a third place or shop those items online. It seems like a pain in the ass, and sometimes it is, but this little extra work has cut our grocery bill in HALF.

- I try and only bring cash to the grocery store.

this really keeps me on budget because, well... without credits cards its impossible to spend more than you have.

- honestly, I ain't about that organic life.

i know this isn't going to be a popular tip but when it comes to shopping smarter (to me) it is WAY more important to spend your money on veggies then products with ingredients. SO if buying organic is going to break the bank then say F IT and head to conventional section, because eating VEGGIES is the most important, organic is a luxury (and to be honest, it's a luxury I don't fully believe is worth it for the most part)

that grocery store flow

aside from the few tips above, how you navigate to the grocery store is JUST as important when it comes to staying on budget. here is the migration path that has helped me!

1. first stop, meat.

meat counter is my first stop when hitting the grocery store. I first look for the meats from my list, BUT if there are meats on sale then I will adjust my plan to maybe a different meal or two. I also love shopping at grocery stores with a meat display case (vs. only prepackaged meats) because this allows me to save money by only buying the quantity we need.

2. find the best quality, most cost effective produce.

next to protein, produce is the bulk of your grocery bill. I of course have staples we always have to keep stocked like: avocados, bananas, apples, onions, garlic, etc. After I round up the essentials, I check what's on sale. I grab some fruits and veggies to keep stocked for snacks or side dishes. Finally, I review the meats I picked out to see if there is anything I am missing for a specific meal I am planning.

depending on your area try these places for higher quality reasonably priced produce:

- farmers markets

- independent grocery stores and markets

- produce shares

- if you have a Trader Joe's in your area, check it out. You will thank me later.

3. grab my required aisle items - this would be like canned beans, yogurt, coconut milk, coffee.

4. and the final step, a girl's gotta be EXTRA.

I use any leftover money I have in my budget and buy those trendy items I just love (girls gotta treat herself a little). you can hit my Instagram for some of my favorite items, but kombucha, dairy free cream cheese, grain-free tortilla chips etc. are always shopped last because they aren't staples but extra items, so they get bought with any EXTRA money.

and that's it. I truly hope it helps you save money and eat cleaner. I mean even if financial obligations are not a factor it's still silly to pay WAY more for something you need to have, like food. I do believe that personal health and wellness is something we should invest in, but it shouldn't make you go broke. I mean a girl's gotta eat but girl's also gotta an online shopping habit... so I need my money. JUST SAYING.

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