by Michelle Jones, GrocerySavingTips.com
After many years of eating a frugal high carb diet, my husband and I adopted a healthier low carb lifestyle. Although we were unable to stay with it completely, I always say some changes for the better are better than none at all. If you've been with me for a while, you know (as a frugal family of six), we have no desire to spend a ton of extra money on groceries, and a low carb diet can certainly be expensive. In order to save money you must continue making an effort to save wherever you can. If you're following a low carb lifestyle or know someone who is, I hope these tips will help you keep the grocery costs down like they helped us when we were trying so hard to cut the carbs out of our diet.
Tip # 1 - Meal Bars and Shakes
One of the most expensive products low carb dieters may find themselves becoming quickly addicted to is low carb meal bars or shakes. Since adopting a low carb lifestyle my husband and I have learned the best way to save on these products is to ration them out (never having more than 1 per day), and to look for the best price. We buy our low carb products (including sugar-free candy and gum) at discount stores like Wal-Mart, Target, K-mart, etc.
Tip # 2 - Salad in a Bag
It's very tempting to buy premade bags of ready-to-eat salads, but with just 5 minutes of preparation a head of fresh lettuce (iceberg, romaine, green leaf or even spinach) will make twice as much salad and cost less than half.
Tip # 3 - In Season
If you're on a budget, keep it simple. Buy the low carb fruits and veggies that are in season and on sale, and likewise for the protein items.
Tip # 4 - Planning
Plan your weekly meals around whichever meats, poultry and seafood items are on sale. If you will just take an hour each week to plan your meals carefully. Use our free printable menu planners (at BetterBudgeting). You can save hundreds off your grocery bill each month!
Tip # 5 - Sugar-Free (Diet) Sodas
Don't be brand loyal. Buy whatever's on sale, period! If you just can't live without your one favorite diet soda, then stock up whenever it goes on sale. If the sale is really good there will likely be a limit of 4 per customer, but nothing says you can't return to the store the next day, for 4 more!
Tip # 6 - Convenience Foods
It's wonderful that restaurants are offering more and more healthy low carb options, kudos to them! Just don't make a habit of buying these expensive conveniences on a daily basis. Make your own wraps and bread free burgers at home and save a bundle of cash instead.
Tip # 7 - Artificial Brand Sweeteners
And much to our delight, the store brand artificial sweetener is just as good as the expensive name brand. And costs about half as much.
Tip # 8 - Fresh Foods
As with any diet, avoid prepackaged foods as much as possible. The more you cook fresh foods at home the more money you'll save, hands down! If you need quick meals on the go prepare a little extra each time you cook and freeze individual portions to use throughout the week.
Tip # 9 - Work with What You Have
Don't follow daily meal plans exactly as written in any book or magazine, continue to work with what you have and buy what's on SALE! If we start buying foods based on special weekly meal plans and not what's on sale, we'll lose more than a few extra pounds; we'll lose a ton of cash!
Copyright 2003-2013 © by Michelle Jones, Founder of GrocerySavingTips.com. All rights reserved.