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IZZYS_MOM Posts: 100
1/31/12 11:09 A

Buying bulk quaker oats is a pretty inexpensive and healthy breakfast. You can add a bit of cinnamon, brown sugar, or bananas to it. I cook it in the microwave to save time. You can also get pretty good deals on yogurt.

Frozen veggies are cheaper than canned and are healthier. At kroger/smiths they have them for $1 a bag.

Buying dried beans in bulk is extremely cheap. They are a little more time consuming but worth it. You soak them overnight, and then boil for 1-2 hours. I can usually squeeze several meals out of one bag. Look for recipes with beans on

Cut back on your meat, as it is usually the most expensive item. You can get protein from other sources, like beans or tofu.

Hope some of these ideas help. There are lots of ideas and recipes online. Look up inexpensive foods or meals or cheap dinners. Good luck with everything! I hope things look up soon. In the mean time, look into food assistance.

Some other inexpensive healthy ideas:

Edited by: IZZYS_MOM at: 1/31/2012 (11:10)
STEPHKD SparkPoints: (29,807)
Fitness Minutes: (46,203)
Posts: 268
1/31/12 2:43 A

Ugh, it's so frustrating that we can barely afford to eat healthy!! It's ridiculous that junk fits into our budget, and we must struggle to purchase real food.

Have you looked into any assistance programs in your area? With a family of 6 and you laid off, you probably will qualify. It would be a huge help to you and your family not just now but in the long run of maintaining your children's health. It's only temporary..

As we get into spring, farmers' markets will be opening up, too. The markets are wonderful for cheap, local, organic food!

1/29/12 7:21 P

In today's economy, it is not easy for the majority of us to buy the healthy foods we know we should be eating over those foods not so good for us including sodas, etc. I retired after 35 1/2 years from the Superior Court. I worked in Human Resources and made good money. I thought I planned out my retirement well, but now I find I probably should not have retired. Although my retirement check is good, but my husband's combined retirement check and Social Security income is not so good. I, too, find that I am watching the ads more closely, looking for bargains, shopping at bargain stores and doing the best I can. I can certainly understand how difficult it must be to serve healthy and specialized foods for a family of four. Good luck!

CTRSARA SparkPoints: (14,593)
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Posts: 153
1/21/12 9:55 A

Hugs! It is so hard to try to eat healthy when everyone has different tastes and your budget is just NOT sufficient. We just graduated from school and DH is in a "training job" which puts us below the poverty level for now. And my 4- and 5- year old regularly do NOT like when I make "real" dinner. There were some good suggestions before. I try to cook from scratch as much as possible, making recipes a little bit healthier here and there, and really watching MY portion control, filling up mostly on veggies. If I eat less of the "meal," that means there's more to go around as leftovers or lunches, too!

CUDA440 SparkPoints: (86,389)
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Posts: 8,044
1/20/12 7:17 P

I don't drink soda but I have heard to buy the seltzer water and put orange slices, or lemon or lime slices in it. It gives the bubbles like soda and flavor from the fruit slices. I don't know if it's cheaper or not.

Make sure to use coupons on things for cleaning, tolietries. There are tons to get in the Sunday papers, and to print as well. This will help save some money to use on other foods. I am now getting 2 sunday papers each week. I know there will be more money in coupons that what I pay for the paper. I also ask family members for their "left over" coupons that they won't use. Lets me save some more. And I can then stack the coupon WITH a sale price for BONUS savings. SUPER bonus savings if your store ever doubles coupons (call and ask) AND all STORE Coupons can be COMBINED with a MANFC coupon. Stock up on things when on sale if you can. When the wheat pasta goes on sale, and I have been seeing LOTS of coupons for wheat pasta. try and grab a few more to have in a few weeks. Frozen veggies are great, again if you can stock up when on sale.

I just heard to add some beans to your hamburger meat for casseroles and stuff. It adds bulk, more food for less calories. Make homemade stews and soups in the crock pot that use beans and veggies.


CBULBOW SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (443)
Posts: 3
1/17/12 8:11 P


I can completely identify with your situation. Though, I have just a 10 month old that can't complain... yet, my husband is all about the meat and potatoes and I am shooting for baked chicken breast, steamed veggies and a salad. Haha. We are financially strained as I am currently a nursing student and my husband's business has been slow. Going from a duel income to a single income with school payments and a child has been a drastic change for us. The healthiest alternative I have found is to buy frozen veggies. They are cheap, not loaded with sodium like canned, and are easily defrosted to turn into salad toppers or steamed/used in caseroles, etc. Another thing I try is beans - cheap, easy to cook, packed with protein, a high-satiety food, and they reheat very well. These items are reasonable to keep just for yourself if the rest of the family won't have any part of them.

I hope this helps you! I always have to remind myself that even though it's financially tight right now, imagine the health related medical costs I am saving us in the future for being healthier now. Well, that I will be saving us once I get closer to my goal. Haha.

Take care!

NICCI32 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (1,251)
Posts: 12
1/17/12 1:34 P

Hey all, I recently became laid off and it was already hard to keep food in the house for four people, especially when we all have different taste and goals. My husband needs to avoid high sodium foods, I'm trying to keep healthy snacks and promote healthy eating for my kids and of course I have been battling losing weight forever.

My husband and I always try to find deals on foods but normally it's stuff that we probably shouldn't eat but happens to be what we can afford. Healthy and organic foods are not in our budget, especially the 100% juice which is our biggest issue. We have been avoiding soda as much as possible but sometimes to have an alternate (from water) it's actually easier to buy soda or juices that are full of sugar.

It's so frustrating trying to diet in these conditions. I don't have any foods to choose from that are considered healthy and most of the time I end up trying to eat the bare minimum and then binge eating because I'm starving. We hardly ever eat out which is good, however I have to prepare meals that are for the whole family and can last a second day. (spaghetti, chili, stew, chicken, etc) Sometimes I can get a box of wheat pasta on sale to replace the white pasta and I also bake my chicken. I try to change what I can but it's honestly not enough. I can't make a vegetable lasagna and expect the rest of my family to eat it. Most of the things I want to try is not appealing to them which in turn leaves me the odd ball out. I can't let them starve and I can't starve in the process so I eat whatever I make for them.

I am good at making a meal out of anything but once again most of what I call "scrap meals" are made with things I shouldn't eat. What do I do? How do I make everyone happy including myself with out breaking the bank?

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