Doing a little fact-checking as you shop can help you choose what’s good for both your health and your wallet, says Consumer Reports.
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Here are 6+ Ways Food Doesn’t Have to Cost More:
Keep “healthy” in perspective: In some cases, foods we may think of as healthier are costlier. For instance, organic foods sometimes are more expensive than their non-organic counterparts.
Do you want Roundup in your food? Monsanto does of course. The FDA does not keep it out of your food.
It’s important to know that organic food is guaranteed to be pesticide and antibiotic-free. Although it isn’t always considered to be nutritionally superior.
Some healthy foods are notably inexpensive: whole grains, beans and peanut butter, for instance, especially store brands says Consumer Reports.
We would like to point out that those same inexpensive foods also cost less with organic as well. Make sure you buy them in bulk. These important health foods which should comprise much of your diet and are much lower expense items. Further, recent studies have concluded that Organic is more nutrient dense. See link below
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Beware of “Healthy” and “Natural”
1. Resist the allure of such claims as “healthy” and “natural”
Technically, if manufacturers want to use the term “healthy” on a product, it must meet certain Food and Drug Administration nutrition standards. For example, products labeled as “healthy” that contain fats can have no more than 1 gram of saturated fat per serving. Also, foods that bear the claim must contain less than 480 milligrams of sodium per serving.
Consumer Reports’ nutrition experts say that those requirements exclude some important components of health; they make no mention of sugars, for instance.
Tip : This is important reason to consider eating Organic Foods. There are concerned about truth in labeling where commercial food is not. The FDA is not in the business of protecting your families food. Eating “Natural” and “Healthy” which they define are a baseline to protect your health, not guideline.
The term “natural” also isn’t regulated, so there’s no guarantee it means anything beneficial for your health. It is fair to say that in fact you can be 99% certain if it is advertising “natural” the product has fake ingredients.
Nutrition Panel | Shop Healthy Foods
2. Scan the nutrition panel on the back or side of the package:
When looking for healthy foods, be on the lookout for products low in saturated and trans fats and sodium. You can do even better. Don’t buy any processed food.
Check for the daily values of nutrients such as vitamins A, C and D; calcium; iron; and potassium – 20 percent or more per serving means it’s a good source. Scan for fiber as well. When you’re looking for healthy foods, keep an eye out for those added sugars. For example, ingredients ending in “-ose” — sucrose, fructose and maltose are just some of many names added sugars go by.
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Check the food label before you buy
Food labels have several parts, including the front panel, Nutrition Facts, and ingredient list. The front panel often tells you if nutrients have been added—for example, “iodized salt” lets you know that iodine has been added, and “enriched pasta” (or “enriched” grain of any type) means that thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, iron, and folic acid have been added.
The ingredient list tells you what’s in the food, including any nutrients, fats, or sugars that have been added. The ingredients are listed in descending order by weight.
See figure 3 to learn how to read the Nutrition Facts. Use the Nutrition Facts to see if a food is a good source of a nutrient or to compare similar foods—for example, to find which brand of frozen dinner is lower in saturated fat, or which kind of breakfast cereal contains more folic acid. Look at the % Daily Value (%DV) column to see whether a food is high or low in nutrients.
If you want to limit a nutrient (such as fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium), try to choose foods with a lower %DV. If you want to consume more of a nutrient (such as calcium, other vitamins and minerals, fiber), try to choose foods with a higher %DV. As a guide, foods with 5%DV or less contribute a small amount of that nutrient to your eating pattern, while those with 20% or more contribute a large amount.
Remember, Nutrition Facts serving sizes may differ from those used in the Food Guide Pyramid (see box 8). For example, 2 ounces of dry macaroni yields about 1 cup cooked, or two (1/2 cup) Pyramid servings.
Tip: Do you best to make avoiding sugars overall. One way to avoid added sugars is eliminating processed food.
Shop Healthy Foods | Buy Seasonal Fruits & Veggies
3. Shop for produce strategically:
Stick to in-season fruits and veggies, which are generally cheaper and more flavorful than items that travel a long way to reach your store. If you’re craving blueberries in January, however, head to the freezer case. Frozen produce studies have shown it just as nutritious or better than fresh. This is due to standards that require frozen to be processed nutritionally peak.
4. Toss out less of what you buy | Shop Healthy Foods
On average, a family of four wastes up to $1,500 worth of food each year. Making better use of your freezer can help.
5. Either buy fresh produce in season or freeze for use later
Overripe fruit that’s frozen, for example, can be added to smoothies, breads, jams or sauces.
6. Opt for fewer ingredients | Shop Healthy Foods
It is healthier to purchase whole foods, fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins rather than packaged processed items. Try to avoid buying boxed or canned foods as a permanent choice. However if you choose them nutrition experts advise that you select those with short ingredient lists.
In addition, a good guide line is to try to buy food with less than 5 ingredients and don’t buy it you don’t know what is in it.
Organic Hangout Response:
The incidence where this report says Organic is more expensive, is not always the case. However in nearly all instances there is more to it than price. Yes, grocery stores take advantage and charge more for Organics so I remind you there are other places to shop. They think you are rich and the margins are much higher for Organics. WHAT DOES HEALTHY FOOD MEAN?
Saving Tip. Discount Groceries ex. Grocery Outlet often have Organics and lower than Grocery Store prices. They are a great resource for Organics.
In-Season items should be bought from the Farmer directly or a Farmers Market where your prices are often substantially less and food fresher. Quiz the Farmer on what if any pesticides/fertilizers were non-organic. Be courteous/Be informed.
Making the Organic choice makes shopping an healthy experience in the Grocery Store.
Do your best to eat Whole Foods, Plant Based. If this one rule in your food choices take priority it will solve food costs, and healthy choices at the same time. Eat Well. Stay Healthy
Resource – Consumers Union Inc.
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