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Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Low-Carb on a Budget

With the constant talk of recession on nearly everyone's lips, it's tough to not worry about your finances. When you have worries such as this one, it's not uncommon to notice a little weight gain. Stress often causes you to put on some unwanted pounds. Unfortunately, when you are worried about finances, you really don't want to committ to an eating plan, because many times, you worry about how much it costs to eat healthy.

Eating foods that are unhealthy costs very little. For example, the cheapest food that I can think of is Ramen Noodles. On average, a package of Ramen Noodles costs somewhere between $.50 and $1.00. With that one package, you can either feed two people, or make two meals for yourself. Now, when money is tight, that might sound like the best thing for you. However, if you look at the nutrition facts for Ramen Noodles, you will see that no matter how great of a deal you get on these, they are not worth what you pay. First of all, the amount of sodium is grotesque. But, of course, you know what nutrition fact I am most interested in...carbs. The amount of carbs in one serving of Ramen Noodles is almost twice the amount of carbs people on low-carb plans should consume in one day. It's important to realize that eating healthy is definitely worth spending a little extra money each week at the grocery store.

There are ways, however, to save money, and still stay on the low-carb eating plan. For example, one thing to remember is that it is okay to buy store-brand, as opposed to name brand. A peanut is a peanut, whether it's a Planters or not. Another way to save is to buy your veggies at local markets instead of grocery stores. The local market in my area has a great selection, wonderful prices, and they often let you sample what they offer. What better way is there to know what you're getting, and get a good deal? My final tip for low-carb on a budget is to shop at places like Sam's, BJ's, and Costco. You can get great deals there on all of the items that should be on your grocery list. I can get great deals on things like cheeses, olives, and of course meat, which is a staple on the low-carb lifestyle. Olives last a long time, so buying them in bulk is fine. Cheeses and meats are both foods that you should consume regularly on this meal plan. If you're worried about buying too much at a time, it's good to know that meats, and most cheeses, can be frozen and last a good while. For tips on how to freeze cheese, go to Angie's blog. She can help you out.

We are all feeling the financial crunch right now, but we must make sure that it doesn't affect our eating habits. It's important to keep your health in mind, even in times of what is being referred to as a recession. Hopefully, some of these tips can help you to stay low-carb, even when on a tight budget.

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