Eating healthy on a budget
Geopolitical issues that are beyond our control have resulted in food prices rising around the world. So, how does one eat healthy on a budget? Experts share tips
A budget diet that includes nutritious food is possible but geopolitical issues that are beyond our control have resulted in food prices rising around the world. Despite the fact that such situations have an effect on our food choices, eating properly is still crucial and living in a country like India, which is very rich in its diversity, every season provides us with some colorful food to cure and fulfill human body’s needs.
In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Susan Bowerman, MS, RD, CSSD, CSOWM, FAND, Senior Director of Worldwide Nutrition Education and Training at Herbalife, shared, “The first step in developing a healthy body is selecting the correct nutrition. The average energy consumption is 1200-1500 calories per day for someone aged 25-40. To maintain regular bodily functions, one should aim for about 120-150 grams of carbohydrates, 75-90 grams of protein, 50-60 grams of fat, and at least 5 daily servings of a variety of fruits, vegetables and greens.”
She explained, “The idea behind this is that even with a limited budget, you can still follow nutrition science and choose tasty and nutritious options. It's easy to obtain many of the vitamins and minerals you need daily from local fruits and veggies at your local market, which are economical and easy to locate. Local seasonal veggies and fruits are the best choices if you want a healthy diet. Lean meat is a healthful choice when selecting animal proteins, but you may also opt for plant-based protein sources such as legumes and lentils. These plant-based proteins are also good sources of fibre, as well as essential minerals iron and zinc. Keep a record of the meals you eat and maintain a choice for each meal. It is also a way to prevent boredom.”
Asserting that no fancy things change your body on a permanent base, Madhavi Savani, Dietician and Lifestyle Counsellor at Apollo Hospitals in Ahmedabad, suggested, “Make sure that your meal plate contains as many colors as found in a rainbow. Learn to read food labels and find out the hidden, inevident unhealthy ingredients like artificial sweeteners, trans fats or cholesterol, caffeine, preservatives and most importantly expiry date. Not all expensive items that look healthy are a friend to your body. Nowadays, given our hectic and stressful lifestyle where it becomes difficult to even catch a breath, it is very important to look after your gut because it will definitely tell you what food items will hamper your digestive system.”