I do most of the grocery shopping for the family, which is no big secret. Our diet is really based around my needs, which means we eat a diet heavy on fresh fruits; vegetables; lean meats, fish and poultry; and of course whole grains. Again, you probably could have guessed that, right?
One of the benefits of our diet, and a bit of portion control, is that my wife has lost ten pounds. Not a bad side-effect, according to her. But, I have often wondered if it costs more to eat this way.
According to my informal survey among grocery store checkers, our diet actually costs less because I am not buying the processed foods like potato chips, snacks, cookies, cheese in an aerosol can, etc. I have consistently been told my grocery bill is less than others.
But, is it really?
“Eating Healthy Costs You $1.50 More Per Day”
Yep, that was the headline that caught my eye. According to this study. eating well (meaning the healthiest alternatives) really does cost more. It costs about $1.50 per day, at least according to this article. The article compared the costs of the two extremes: the healthiest and unhealthiest diets.
$1.50 per day. Less than a cup of coffee. About half the price of a Big Mac. Not a whole lot. But, when considered annually it’s over $500 more per person, which can really make a difference in the family budget for a lot of folks. But, do you need to go to the healthiest of diets to gain benefits?
What would happen if you were to just eliminate potato chips? A lot of folks I see in the store are buying two and three bags of chips. Eliminate chips, just chips (and the accompanying dip) and you get rid of a lot of extra salt, oils and fats. I mean, who eats a real portion-size of chips – something like nine chips. Do you stop with nine? I know I didn’t.
“But, Phil, what am I going to have instead of chips?”
Well, ideally I’d like to say nothing, but let’s get real. You want something crunchy. A bit of salt. So, what about three (3!) saltine crackers with peanut butter?
“Three? Come on, Phil. You have to be joking.”
Alright, go for four and have them with a bit of milk (four to five ounces). You might find you really like them. By eliminating the potato chips you will save $10 to $12 per week.
What would happen if you were to reduce soda pop you drink? You’d reduce sugar intake. Even if you drink the ‘diet’ soda pop, you will decrease water retention – which means you will almost automatically lose weight. One less soda a day means another $3.50 per week. Substitute? Enhanced water flavorings. You are probably already buying bottled water, just add the flavoring for about 20 cents a bottle – including the water.
Do you see what you have done? Eliminate chips and one soda a day and you have paid for difference between the unhealthiest and healthiest of diets for two people. Not a bad start. Or, you have paid for improving the diet of four people. Just a bit of improvement – a few more fresh vegetables and fruit – can have a huge impact on the short and long-term health of your family. This is not pie-in-the-sky; this is reality.
Eat better and you will eat less. Think about it for a moment. Do the snack food makers want you to eat less? No! They only make money when you buy; and form personal experience I can tell you that when you buy, you gain weight. I learned an interesting lesson when I had to change what I ate: When you eat healthier food, you eat less because you don’t need as much. When you eat less what happens? Wait for it…You lose weight. And, when you lose weight, health problems like Diabetes could well be in your rear view mirror. I really don’t want you to get Diabetes; you don’t want it…really.
A few little changes can make all of the difference in the world for your health. A few little changes can mean victory in your War On Diabetes. A few little changes can mean lost weight. A few little changes can mean you may never have to face Diabetes in any form. A few little changes can mean a healthier diet for you and your family.
And, if you are fighting Diabetes, a few little changes can mean victory with lowered glucose and A1c results. You can do it!
A few little changes can mean a better quality of life; a healthier life for you and your loved ones.
Please, make a change, or two, and see what happens. You only have the world to gain, and nothing to lose – except weight.
As always, thank you for reading.