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Healthy eating that won’t break the bank

food & health

Eating healthy on a budget… is it possible? We weren’t sure either, until we did some research and asked experts at Stellenbosch University and the Heart Foundation for some advice. We also checked out the prices of food items and compiled a list of foods that you can buy each month to keep your family healthy, without draining your bank account.

A great tip is to shop only once or twice a month. If you shop more often than this, you’re probably going to spend more. Also, never go shopping when you’re hungry because you’ll end up buying stuff that’s not on your list (as well as buying a chocolate or something not very good for you).

Here’s a list of healthy foods you can buy on a budget and why they are important:

  • Eggs – they increase your good cholesterol, contain antioxidants that are good for the eyes, are filled with vitamins and iron and are very low in fat. Eggs are also a brilliant source of protein and they make you feel full.
  • Bananas – they are naturally full of protein and fibre. They are also a very good source of potassium, which helps to reduce your sodium levels (too much salt can lead to heart disease).
  • Tomatoes – these are filled with lycopene, which is an antioxidant with many health benefits, like reducing heart disease and cancer. They also have loads of vitamins, like Vitamin C, Vitamin K, potassium and folate.
  • Onions – these are great sources of various vitamins and minerals and are also great for reducing heart disease.
  • Carrots – carrots also contain loads of vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre. They’re important for reducing cancer risk and are healthy for your eyes.
  • Chicken – this meat is high in protein, which is important for muscle mass.
  • It’s also full of calcium and phosphorous that help keep your bones strong.
  • Beef – this is filled with vitamins and iron, as well as protein. It’s a great staple, but it’s also best to not eat it every day.
  • Spinach – spinach is bursting with vitamins and minerals your body needs. When you cook spinach, your body is able to absorb all the goodness even better.
  • Maize meal – releases substances that fight cancer, such as butyric acid, in the colon. Butyric acid fights off the colon cancer cells produced by cancer-causing chemicals that are formed in charred meat, including braaied meat.
  • Pilchards – a great source of protein and omega-3, which is essential for a healthy heart.
  • Lentils – lentils are excellent sources of vitamins and minerals that you need, as well as fibre and protein. If you eat more lentils than meat, you’re doing your health a big favour.
  • Samp and beans – beans are full of amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein. They are also great for heart health and for keeping your blood sugar in check. Both samp and beans are low GI, which means you stay fuller for longer and they are good sources of fibre.
  • Peanut butter – this is also a great source of protein.

Read the full Magazine here.