Hello 2009! I still can't believe how quickly the holiday season passed and now, as we recover from weeks of decadent eating, it seems like healthy, budget-conscious eating tops most everyone's New Year's Resolutions list. Treating both our bodies and our environment with more respect is something we should keep in mind year-round, but it's nice to have a moment to step back and reflect.Just in time, we have our latest edition of The Whole Deal™ quarterly value guide in stores now — loaded with money-saving tips, sure deals, coupons, recipes and budget-friendly meal solutions. Along with the great customer tips below, you'll have lots of help in keeping your recently made promises to yourself. Remember, each week, we choose customer tips to be featured in our weekly The Whole Deal™ blog post. Every chosen tip gets a $25 gift card, so submit your tips and recipes here. From Grace:
Eating healthy can be difficult when you are a poor college student but my boyfriend and I make a weekly meal plan and go grocery shopping once for the week. We make a big list and use the sale flyers as well as the Whole Deal newsletter to plan meals that include sale items. It is important for us to use seasonal, organic fruits and veggies and we have recently tried to make at least one or two vegetarian meals to cut back on the cost of meat. We LOVE the salad bar, if we don’t feel like cooking, we bike over to our local Whole Foods and create our own salads at about $4.00 per person and grab a piece of fruit for dessert. We have also found that buying bulk meat packages and separating them into 1 lb portions is a great way to ration the meat and save money! I am constantly online checking the sale flyers and finding recipes that go with the products that are on sale. One of our biggest money savers is making a casserole or something in the crock pot and then eating the leftovers all week long. It saves a ton of money and we pick dishes that taste even better the second day! I have found that buying lettuce in the salad bar containers in portions for two saves us from wasting the salad that we wouldn’t use if we were to buy a big package. I love finding new ways to save money without compensating my health. Most college kids are living paycheck to paycheck and often turn to processed and cheap food and consequently bad lifestyle habits begin to form. My boyfriend and I are living proof that you can be healthy and feel great without going broke! We also keep ALL of our receipts and at the end of the month, total how much we spend in food and other household areas so we have a good idea of total costs and can adjust accordingly, it is amazing to track your money and see where it is going and where you can cut unnecessary spending. Another fun tip is making a meal with friends. Everyone can chip in and it will be more cost-effective because you can have a well-balanced meal and don’t have to foot the entire bill. I love the closeness of cooking a good healthy meal with friends and being able to enjoy it together! It takes a little bit of effort and work to live healthy but the reward is well worth it and we will continue to be loyal Whole Food customers for many years to come! Happy Eating!!From Lyn:
We are on a pretty tight budget these days (like so many) but I still like to be able to shop at Whole Foods when I can since I have some food allergies/intolerances. Something that really helps me is to buy mostly ingredients. It does take a little more effort to cook from scratch, but this truly saves the most money. Also, a tip that helps a lot is to plan my shopping trip “before” I go into the store. I leave a little for a deal or two, but in general I know what my total cost will be. No surprises this way! I attended a “Shopping On A Budget” class at my local store which was a help to me. Although I felt I was an experienced Whole Foods shopper, I learned quite a few money-saving tips!From Nidia:
Cooking for one with long work hours is really hard sometimes but I know I have to do it to avoid buying lunch at work or getting takeaway for dinner. I combat it by cooking on weekends. I make three dishes on the weekend for the week: one hearty, one lighter, one sweet. And then I buy a huge bag worth of fruit of varying ripening speeds to supply 5 days’ worth of snacks. It can be hard sometimes, but I’ve gone since January now without ordering out. It was one of my New Year’s resolutions for 2008… and it’s working.