My friend Liane (I got her permission to post this) had a great question: “I was also going to ask you for help… I would like to save money on my food budget. I don’t want to sacrifice the quality of food I eat (organic). I know you eat the same as we do pretty much. Any suggestions?”
The way we live our lives is all connected. So much goes hand in hand. Our finances are greatly influenced by how much we spend on our groceries. Our groceries affect our health. Our health affects how much we spend on healthcare costs and so on….
One of the questions is, “Do you want to spend the money now or later?” Another question is, “Do you want to feel good, and have a good quality of life? Or are you content to eat anything you want and feel so-so or miserable?
I thought of three things right away to save money on organic food.
- Buy limited organic boxed/canned food, which means you’ll make food from scratch. The more you can do from scratch (even organic), the more money it will save. I am growing more and more amazed at the incredible creations you can come up with from scratch. As an example, we will make granola cereal, and it is so much cheaper than boxed (and Jonathan insists it’s much tastier). Yes, I still buy boxed cereal, but we use way less of it than we did before. Also, when you buy convenience items like boxed pancake and brownie mixes, you are paying sometimes four times what you would pay if you would make it from scratch.
- Stock and save on the organic deals you do find. For instance, organic apples will go on sale, and these will keep for a couple of weeks, so they are a great fruit to stock up on. Besides eating the apples whole or putting them in smoothies, you can make your own applesauce and fruit leather.
- Save money in other grocery areas like cleaning supplies, toiletries and paper goods, so you can spend the savings on the organic products. Consider making your own hand soaps, body wash, deodorant, toothpaste, and cleaners. When you delve into this world of making your own home products, you will be amazed at how easy most of them really are when you get down to it! They are also so much better for God’s creation…which includes you! You can also use coupons to save on paper goods. I am still cutting coupons, but I have limited it to paper goods and natural/organic products.
We aren’t 100% organic (yet, maybe 15%), but we are about 85-95% natural whole foods. Every time we go to the grocery store I try to buy at least one organic item. The other day I was getting some cilantro to make some cilantro lime pesto, and the convention bunch was $0.69, and the organic was $0.99. I bought the organic to support organic farming practices, and because it really wasn’t much more than the conventional. I know the pennies add up, and I definitely talk about saving your pennies and cutting costs. But you save your pennies so you can spend elsewhere. This is where I was choosing to spend the money and go the organic route especially because they were still both under $1. We are still trying to be balanced while trying to save money.
There is no substitute for good food. Either pay a little extra money now on quality food (which might seem like a lot now), or you might pay a whole lot more money later in doctor, hospital and prescription costs. The choice is yours. What choice will you make? Hope this helps, Liane!
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