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- Take your time at the grocery store and refer to your grocery list.
- Do not run with your shopping cart before you grab your grocery list.
- Stick to your grocery list for the sake of your grocery budget, list of meals, and nutrition's sake.
- If you want to stick to your grocery budget and food list, go to the store alone. Do not take your hubby, your kids, the neighbor, a stranger on the street, or anyone else.
- If I have an ingredient, but I am getting low, I will add it to my grocery list, even though I may not be using it that week and this assures I never run out of that item.
- When I am in the store, I train my eyes not to wander to food items that are not on my grocery list. This hurts my budget and waistline.
- Never grocery shop when hungry, everything not good for the body looks exceptionally good to the eye when you are hungry. Somehow these not so nutritious items end up in my cart.
Whenever I take my hubby or kids to the grocery shop, I end up with a big bag or two or three snacks (not the nutritious kind,) light bulbs, bags of candy, cookies, extension cords, and all sorts of things that come out my food budget.
These extras hurt my weekly food list. Then, at the checkout, I heard from hubby, "What! Boy, your groceries were expensive this week. It is for this reason that I learned a long time ago; no one goes with mom to the store.
**As the kids get older and you can hold their attention, take them on educational trips to the grocery store. Have your kids help read food labels and decide what foods are more nutritious, and which food choices offer nothing except empty calories.
Encourage family involvement sometimes.
Involve family in meal planning for one week, preparation of grocery lists and grocery shopping. Strictly follow your grocery list for the sake of your budget and waistline.
Take Time to Make Your Weeks Worth of Meals
My Opinion About Fixing Nutritious Meals
First, let me say that I have no degrees in nutrition or dietary consulting. What knowledge I have is an accumulation of over 40 years of nursing. Also, our family worked closely with a renowned medical doctor for over 20-years whose focus was nutrition and holistic approaches to health and wellness.
Much of what I write about is what I learned over the years from many different sources, many patient assessments related to disease in correlation with nutrition, and loads of research and reading. Much of what I have to say is how I have come to practice proper nutrition within my own family.
Proper nutrition and meal planning starts in your kitchen. The grocery list you make out for reference before you visit the store helps to determine what you chose to put in your grocery cart.
Eating healthy is not just for the rich and famous. If you live on a limited budget, you do have the choice of eating healthy and healthily preparing your food choices. First, you must understand what you are eating, and this comes more natural with time.
It does not matter if you are an excellent cook and think you know everything about food preparation possible or you are just starting to venture into the cooking arena and have a lot to learn, just believe you can make better meals for your family and try to give yourself a chance. Even those cooks who are well-seasoned cooks can stand to learn something new and different.
Read food labels and understand what you are putting into your body. Over time you instantly recognize what food choices offer the best nutritional value for you and your family.
Use everyday ingredients to stock your kitchen.
If a recipe calls for peas or beans and one member of your family does not like these foods, then pick out a smart substitution or leave out that ingredient and replace it with another protein ingredient within the meal choice.
Do not serve something to the family that someone does not like because this is no fun and it defeats your purpose.
Make sure you always have the basics such as eggs, milk, butter, natural cheese (not processed,) kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. If all you can afford are these items, you can make your family a lot of things from these basics.
Another thing you will have to understand is, making an amount that is right for you and your family. Rule of thumb is to leave the dinner table feeling a tad hungry. Learn to leave the table a tad hungry or until you feel sufficiently full.
Practice these principles to save time and money at the checkout and to purchase healthy food choices.
Never try to put a meal together at the last minute.
Planning your meals is essential. Going through your cookbooks allows you options for introducing new and exciting meals and not the "Same old thing." Go through your recipes and ask your family what sounds tasty to them.
When the kids were growing up and they were old enough, I let everyone take a turn at planning a dinner meal, and I helped them prepare in a nutritious way.
This method takes a bit of time and patience and becomes more natural as time passes. What I have found is that the busier my family is, the more helpful this system becomes. I try to pick out nutritious dinners, and then I make a list of the ingredients I need to get to prepare that specific meal.
Avoid unhealthy meal options.
Grilling Rids Fat Content
Tips to Save Time in the Kitchen:
Dice up fresh green peppers or onions, put them in quart-size freezer bags and store in your freezer. Put these foods out as you need them.
If possible, prepare meals ahead of time and put them in the freezer to pull out in a matter of minutes to bake.
Check dates on canned goods at least twice a year and rotate foods so those expiring are used first.
Take one day a week to eat up the leftovers. Sometimes Friday or Saturday is a potluck meal where the family eats up all the leftovers. Sometimes if you have the right leftovers you can make these into some other casserole. I utilize my crock-pot a lot when I am busy.