5 Tips for Eating Organic on a Budget

By Joy Adamonis – Warwick

There is a big misconception when it comes to eating organic. First, people assume you must be a “crunchy hippie” and second, people think it’s too expensive. But eating organic means we don’t want to expose our family to harmful chemicals through the food we eat. Yes, many organic items are pricier than their counterparts, but you can still enjoy eating organic without breaking the bank. Hopefully, with the push for non-GMO foods and better quality products, the market will be better suited for the average income family in the future. But until then, here are some tips that can help alleviate the stress when it comes to paying for organic items.

 

  1. Plan your weekly menu. This is the most important tip because it ensures nothing goes to waste. If you know you are making lasagna and need tomatoes, then plan for another dish during the week where you can use the remaining tomatoes. Not only will you waste less, but planning also helps with time. You will know what’s for dinner even before you step foot in the door after a long day’s work.
  2. Follow the dirty dozen/clean 15 rules. There are a dozen or so fruits and vegetables that scientists have found to yield the highest pesticide load, urging consumers to buy organic versions. The clean 15 is a list of fruits and veggies that have the lowest pesticide load and are safe to eat from a conventionally grown source. Dirty dozen: apples, strawberries, grapes, celery, peaches, spinach, bell peppers, nectarines (imported), cherry tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers, and snap peas (imported).
  3. Learn to love the freezer. There are many stores that offer deals on the day of expiration. Or perhaps you just didn’t get around to eating all of those strawberries. Bag them up and pop them in the freezer. You will be surprised at how much food you throw away when you could actually be freezing it for another use.
  4. Shop at a farmers market. Although some small local farms will not be certified organic, they might not use pesticides. The organic certification is costly for farmers. The produce, meat and fish are right from your backyard.  Chances are since it doesn’t travel far, it’s fresher and may be free of many of the chemicals you see in the big-box stores.
  5. Invest in a wholesale club membership. We all know that buying in bulk saves you money. Well, that goes the same with buying organic items in bulk. Many wholesale clubs are joining the bandwagon and adding organic produce, hormone-free meats and cage-free eggs. If you have a large family, this tip is especially worth a second look.

 

We all want what’s best for our health. But economics is sometimes a factor we cannot deny. Take these ideas, add them to your daily life and reap the benefits of eating organic while saving some “green” as well.

 

Joy Adamonis is a local freelance writer, blogger and social media strategist. She is a devoted mom and wife who enjoys living an active lifestyle. Kickboxing, yoga and running have transformed her life and have helped maintain her 75-pound weight loss.  She loves a good cupcake, crafting, football and margaritas! Read more from Joy at www.mysensationalkid.com.

 

 

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