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Stretch Your Food Budget

Are you concerned about the size of your grocery bill? There are steps you can take to help manage your food dollars while still losing weight and feeling fabulous! Use these tips to help you be more money savvy with food purchases.

Preparing for Grocery Shopping:

  • When you're hungry, you don't always make the best diet plan decisions — and this can show up on your grocery bill. Enjoy your Jenny's Cuisine® entrée or snack before you head to the grocery store. You can avoid purchasing unplanned or extra items by shopping when you are not hungry.
  • Take inventory of your pantry monthly so you can restock with staples such as rice, beans, pasta, canned fruits and vegetables, herbs & spices, condiments & sauces, oils & vinegars, and canned meats such as tuna and chicken.
  • Plan to replenish your freezer with frozen vegetables on a monthly basis. Frozen fruits and veggies are perfect for healthy eating on the go.
  • Check weekly grocery specials and compare prices between stores to find the best deals.
  • Plan ahead. Make weekly shopping lists to decrease impulse purchases and avoid waste. Group your grocery list into categories to save time while grocery shopping and help you stay focused on your list. Refer to sample shopping list below for ideas.
  • Grocery Shopping Tips:

  • Shop alone, if possible, to avoid distractions and minimize unplanned purchases.
  • Focus on the outside perimeter of the store where the fresh foods are located, including the meat & poultry section and the produce section. Often more expensive and more highly processed items tend to be located in the center of the store.
  • Purchase locally grown seasonal produce. Check your local Farmers Market or ask the grocery store's produce manager where to find locally grown produce. To learn which fruits and vegetables are in season, visit Fruits and Veggies Matter More.
  • Purchase canned or frozen fruits and vegetables when fresh options are not available.
  • Calculate unit prices to find the best value between products. The unit price is the cost per unit, such as per ounce or pound. To do this, divide the cost of the food item by the unit price. This will tell you how much it will cost per unit.
  • When buying in bulk, choose items that you commonly use. For instance, you can purchase lean meats in bulk and freeze half to use at a later time.
  • Look for sales so you can stock up on non-perishable items such as canned vegetables and beans.
  • Use coupons, but be sure to use them for items that you need or normally use. For even more savings, find a grocery store that doubles coupons.
  • Compare store brands to"name brands" for price and nutritional value. Store brands often have similar food values to name brands at a lower cost.
  • Cooking and Food Preparation Tips:

  • Prepare family meals from scratch. Not only will this help you and your family achieve better nutrition, it's often a much less expensive option than prepackaged meals.
  • Make your own snack bags instead of purchasing prepackaged snacks. For example, cut up carrots and bell peppers and store in snack size portions instead of buying the snack size bags.
  • Eating Out Tips:

    Use these cost-saving ideas that also help your weight management plan when dining out:

  • Share an entrée with a friend.
  • Ask for a to-go container and pack away half of your meal when it is served.
  • Order an appetizer and a side salad for your meal.
  • Additional Saving Tips:

  • Plant your own vegetable and herb garden.
  • Order your groceries online if you are tempted to overindulge at the grocery store.
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