When it comes to following a wholesome Paleo lifestyle, you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank. The Paleo Diet® is composed of meats, healthy fats and oils, vegetables, and fruits. It’s nothing “fancy.” Rather, it’s going back to basics and not relying on fads or novelty items. There are many tips and tricks that can help you keep within your budget, especially when you’re first starting out. Here’s some of our favorite Paleo-on-a-budget advice.
1. Buy produce that is in season
This piece of advice requires some planning and awareness on your part. Research which Paleo-friendly items are in season during different times of the year. Why? Well, seasonal produce is often at a reduced price. It can also help your local farmers and will taste fresh, too! Let’s use spring as an example. In the spring, you can find in-season kale, avocados, peaches, cauliflower, and strawberries. You can make quite a few dishes and snacks using just these fresh spring ingredients. If you find yourself in doubt as to what is currently in season, you can quickly research your area.
2. Try your hand at gardening
Consider taking up gardening to procure your own fresh fruits and veggies. It doesn’t need to be vast and complex. Even something small where you grow herbs can be a profitable and pleasurable activity so that you can easily add flavor to your dishes! Things that you can consider growing are lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and carrots. You’ll want to consider the temperature and climate of where you live, but at the very least, you can grow herbs indoors.
3. Inexpensive meat can be ethical, too
Meat is a large portion of the Paleo Diet and provides you with much-needed protein. After all, your body uses protein to build tissue, make enzymes, and your hair and nails are composed primarily of protein. You may be wondering which cuts of meat are generally cheaper. Think bone-in and ground meat. When purchasing this meat, we recommend that you opt for buying from ethical, eco-friendly sellers where you can see how the animals were treated. If you live in an area with farms and ranches, then take advantage of this and look out for terms such as grass-fed, free-range, and hormone-free. If farms and ranches are not an option, then check your local grocery stores for specials and sales on ethical meats. Avoid fatty feedlot meat.
4. Consider buying in bulk
If you already know which ingredients your diet is heavy in, then consider buying bulk. When purchasing meat in bulk, like from a local farm, you’ll want to freeze it so that you can prepare it at your own pace. Some other things that can be bought in bulk are eggs, frozen fruit, vegetables, olive oil and nuts. Check out your local bulk stores, farms, and ranches for ideas.
5. Plan, plan, plan
Lastly, while pursuing your Paleo lifestyle, it can be helpful to plan ahead. This could mean planning the meals and snacks that you want to eat ahead of time, keeping a list of the foods that are staples in your diet, and keeping track of the amount of money that you spend, in order to stick safely to your budget. Planning takes out the hassle of trying to figure out what to eat at the last minute, which can be especially difficult with a family.
The Paleo Diet is a no-frills, budget-friendly means of eating and living your life. Keeping these tips in mind can make things easier whether you’re a beginner or have been Paleo for several years. Take your time, do your research and focus on living a healthy and fulfilling life.