Displayed in magazine racks in grocery stores, plastered on billboards down the highway and invading our Google searches on the Internet are tons of articles and propaganda reminding us to think about our body image. And closely linked to that — losing weight.
It’s hard to lose weight for most people, and when you’re in college, it can be harder. Especially after every time we try to buy healthier items, we cautiously look at our bank accounts hoping the damage isn’t bad, only to realize we have to go the next week on the only-buy-survival-items budget.
Even if you don’t want to lose weight, adopting a healthier lifestyle can help your body maintain its strength. For example, according to everydayhealth.com, consuming calcium can prevent development of osteoporosis, a health condition characterized by weak or brittle bones.
Whatever your reason may be, next time you drive to the grocery store, keep these tips in mind to eat healthy on a budget.
1. Canned beans
Probably the last thing any of us think about, but canned beans are super cheap and are high in protein. Four 15.5-ounce cans of Great Value pinto beans are $2.50 on Walmart’s website, probably even cheaper in store. My mom made my family pinto bean soup often since it was an inexpensive, healthy meal. Add in ham seasoning and let them cook in a Crock-Pot all day. Quick and easy.
Sign up for our newsletter
Get The Plainsman straight to your inbox.
2. Lettuce wraps
Instead of buying your usual choice of bread, grab a head of lettuce. Make the sandwich you would have made with bread, except use a piece of lettuce and wrap the meat and cheese inside. Two heads of lettuce would run you $1.88 at Sam’s Club.
You might be groaning and saying, “But I don’t have time to blend all fresh fruit up, let alone buy all the expensive ingredients.” Don’t fear. I found these incredible Dole Fruit Smoothie Shakers through a friend a few weeks ago. These to-go smoothies are already premixed and frozen. All you have to do is add orange juice or any juice of your choice to the fill line. The shakers are $1.78 at Walmart and Great Value brand orange juice is $1.77.
4. Vegetable steamers
In the frozen section of the grocery store, you can find bags of frozen vegetables. The Green Giant mixed kind priced at $1.88 at Walmart is my personal favorite. You just pop the bag in the microwave and let it steam the veggies. This way you can eat the vegetables needed for a healthy diet without buying produce.
5. Peanut butter banana whole wheat wrap
This is a great, low-cost healthy meal I eat when I need energy fast. Take a whole wheat tortilla, spread peanut butter on it and cut up a banana to lay on top. Fold over and microwave for a few seconds and voila. Great Value peanut butter is approximately $3, and the whole wheat tortillas are $2.48.
Avocados are super yummy in my opinion, and they’re good for you too. I saw one of my roommates last year do this and tried it. It was actually good and filling. Just take an avocado and cut it in half, take the pit out, shell it out and pour some low-fat Italian salad dressing in the middle. Enjoy your avocado boat. Avocados are usually approximately $2 each.
Emily can be reached at intrigue@ThePlainsman.com.
Do you like this story? The Plainsman doesn't accept money from tuition or student fees, and we don't charge a subscription fee. But you can donate to support The Plainsman.Support The Plainsman