Happy Thursday folks!
As many of you probably know, I dived right into a brand new year this past January with a challenge to complete a round of #whole30 during the month of January. Minus the small cheating I did at one of my best friend’s weddings on the 28th, for the most part: mission accomplished.
For someone living on a budget (as we all should be doing, no matter how large or small your income!) drastically changing your diet from processed and packaged foods to fresh and healthy foods automatically sends a red flag to my grocery budget. Grabbing fresh produce and protein selections at Harris Teeter will definitely cost a little more than a frozen pizza or rice and beans.
So how do I afford to live a healthy life style without dropping a fortune while doing so? I’m so glad you asked! Here’s how 🙂
You Quit Purchasing Alcohol
Gasps! Yes, this is one of the toughest challenges on the whole 30: you quit spending 3-10$ a serving on alcohol. Can you believe the markup some establishments have on alcohol anyways? It’s insane! Now I hate to hate on booze, because I can totally go for a craft beer or vodka martini (#weakness) but boy can we drop some precious money on sugary, carb loaded beverages. Even after the Whole 30 if you decide to add alcohol back into your life, consider purchasing a good alcohol artillery at home, and treat yourself to drinks out for those special occasions. You also save on the cost of Uber or Taxi to get you home, so that’s a win too!
You Eat Out Less
It is extremely difficult to eat out on the Whole 30. Not impossible, but you basically quiz the staff on their menu selection and stare longingly at your significant other eating a marvelous slice of cheesy grease coated pizza goodness and you hate him. (Stay strong!) That being said, you end up eating at home a lot more because you can control the ingredients and know exactly what you’re consuming. Of course food costs at home will be much lower, but you also save on the service tip and cost of travel to go out.
Your Clothing Budget Basically Pauses
For me, I lose anywhere from 10-15 pounds when I do a round of Whole 30. Why spend money on nice clothing when you know it won’t fit the same way in a month? I cut my shopping down substantially when doing Whole 30, so that is something to consider as well.
No More Specialty $5.00 Lattes
No longer can you say yes to a cinnamon dulce latte or a caramel macchiato – now it’s black coffee or Americanos! These puppies are pretty delicious once you get past the absence of diary, and the Americano is a nice change from the black coffee you probably drink every morning, or with coconut milk. They generally run half the price of your normal latte beverage, so give yourself a pat on the back.Sneak your own snacks into the movies. Buttery popcorn and diet coke is not Whole 30, unfortunately, so you are forced to either a. watch your movie in a horrible, depressing state of no snackage or b. sneak your own snacks in. Last time I checked a medium popcorn and soda was over 10 bucks! I’m sure some veggies or fruit, or even some nuts would be much more affordable. Ladies – utilize those large bags you carry around everywhere!
Host dinner Parties
Take this opportunity to show of your culinary skills! Invite your friends over to either try your creations, or bring their own foods of choice. This way you can make your own compliant foods, more affordably, while not giving up a social life.
Now a lot of these tips are pretty Whole 30 specific, but they’re habits you can develop to carry your healthy lifestyle past your 30 day mark while not completely throwing in the towel to your balanced budget. Don’t get me wrong, you’ll definitely see your grocery spending rise, but these are ways you can cut from your budget to account for your healthy food costs.
How about you? What are ways you stay on budget for the #whole30