Healthy individuals are an asset to the society and to stay fit, healthy eating is essential. The more healthy and nutritious foods you eat the fit and stronger you become. Eating healthy and nutritious foods helps strengthen your immune system, which fight with several germs and infections to you fit and healthy. While one must never compromise with good food, sometimes the problem lies not in the choice of foods but in the budget. Well, I have seen many otherwise disciplined individuals being choosy about certain foods due to their high price. Be it for lack of good job, or post retirement phase or too much of sudden expenditure at something, there can be several problems related to our financial status. I mean, let us face the fact that not everyone is equally financially strong. But, still we should not compromise much as far as healthy eating and balanced diets are concerned. Did you know that there are some foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition? Well, eating these foods is definitely one of the cheapest ways to stay healthy. And if you are interested to know about the best foods that cost less, but offer plenty of nutrition, then read on for today we are going to discuss about the cheapest ways to stay healthy by eating foods that costs less and offers lots of nutrition.
Be it due to inflation or too much demand in comparison to the supply, the prices of every item fluctuates from time to time. This includes the several food items like fruits, vegetables, dairy products etc as well. But, still if we talk on a general basis, we can see that there are certain foods that are very healthy but at the same time are above average when it comes to price. For example, the fish salmon is very healthy and nutritious but it does cost more if not too much in many parts of the world. Now, there can be several factors behind that but generally speaking, it cannot be afforded to be eaten frequently by a major section of the society.
Also, several studies have shown that people in general also believes that something which is healthy is actually expensive. Like, for example, one which was published in the “Journal of Consumer Research”, it showed people does overgeneralization regarding the health factor and price of the food which also sometimes affect their choice of foods. But, if you take my words, you are actually far from truth and there are several foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. I, in my today’s post will talk about the cheapest ways to stay healthy and fit by eating the best healthy foods that are really cheap, but nutritious. I hope that you do incorporate them in your diet chart.
So are you ready?
I heard you saying yes.
So let us begin our discussion straight away.
Cheapest ways to stay healthy: foods that cost less but offer plenty of nutrition
If you want to stay healthy, then you gotta eat properly balanced healthy foods. And if you think healthy got to be expensive then think again. Because here’s the list of top 23 healthy foods that cost less but offer plenty of nutrition and can be afforded by most of us. Your body needs its daily dose of variety of nutrients and with the below-mentioned cheap healthy foods; you will be able to fulfil your body’s nutrient requirements within your monthly food budget.
I will be listing all the names of the top foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition to help you make your diet chart. In fact, I will be talking about them categorically like under the subtopic of the fruits, vegetables, whole grains etc. to make it easier for you to understand.
Cheapest Vegetables that offers plenty of nutrition
Eating fresh and green vegetables is integral to good health because vegetables provides a number of essential nutrients which required by our body. Listed below are some of the best yet cheapest vegetables that offer plenty of nutrition.
You can never miss this healthy vegetable which is immensely healthy as well as cheap. It is rich in Vitamin C, which strengthens your immune system and keeps you healthy. Besides, it is rich in folate and Vitamin k that is beneficial in case of blood clotting and can also help in getting healthy babies and prevent the occurrence of neural tube birth defects in them.
Several studies have shown that broccoli has many health benefits and can prevent several deadly diseases with cancer becoming a primary one. So make sure you eat broccoli frequently.
Not just for adding taste, you must eat onions for its food value as well. They are rich in various antioxidants and nutrients that as per reports is greatly effective in many health issues with taking care of your heart and preventing diabetes and obesity being the essential ones. Moreover, studies have also shown onions to possess anti-cancerous properties that further adds up to its already mentioned health benefits.
Some of the noted nutrients we find in onions are Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, manganese, potassium etc, each of which are vital for our body to stay healthy and strong. Onions are not at all costly, so make sure you eat them and enjoy the flavour as well as the health benefits.
Talking about healthy vegetables, no one can forget about the green leafy spinaches. However, if you are thinking about the price, then worry not as spinach are not costly and anyone can eat them in a frequent basis. And, as far as health benefits are concerned, they are rich in several nutrients like Vitamin C, Vitamin A, manganese and folate, all of which as per modern research are instrumental in keeping your immune system strong.
Spinach is a wonder ingredient that besides the above-mentioned benefits can also help in reducing inflammation and prevent cell damage. Also, it is loaded with Vitamin K, that is proved to be essential for your heart, bones and to cure cancer. Hence, spinach is a must-have ingredient.
One of the cheapest and the healthiest vegetables are sweet potatoes and you must definitely eat them. If you have weak eyes, which is a common problem nowadays, then sweet potatoes are a must for you. This is because they are rich in beta-carotene which your body converts to Vitamin A, which in turn as per reports is good for your eyes.
Sweet potatoes are also rich in Vitamin B, Vitamin C, potassium and fiber which makes them anti-inflammatory in nature and can protect your body against life threatening diseases like cancer and diabetes and studies are a proof of that.
Tomatoes are very cheap and definitely falls a part of the top foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. They are loaded with various kinds of vitamins with Vitamin C, Vitamin B, Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Vitamin E being the important ones. Besides this, studies show their ability to improve your cardiovascular health. This is mainly due to the fact that they can reduce the levels of bad cholesterol LDL in human body and also keep your blood pressure under control. And, they are also anti-cancerous and can protect you against various types of cancers with special mention of prostate cancer in men.
Several researches has shown that most of the health benefits of tomatoes are due to the lycopene content in them which is a perfect antioxidant and can also help against inflammation and cellular damage. So, eat tomatoes often.
Carrots are another nutrient-rich vegetable that are cheap and so all of us can eat them in adequate amounts. They are loaded with beta-carotene which is converted to Vitamin A, which you already know is good for your eyes and your immune system in general. As per USDA chart, they are also rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin K, fiber, potassium and magnesium which are all very good for your system.
The commonly available cabbage is not just healthy to eat but is also one of the cheapest vegetables that most of us can afford. The green cabbage is loaded with several vitamins with abundance of Vitamin B, Vitamin C and Vitamin K in them. Also, it is yet another vegetable which contains glucosinolates that in turn is proved to be greatly effective against cancer.
In fact, not just cancer, cabbage also has the potential to tackle several health problems including cardiovascular problems and studies have already included it among the list of heart healthy vegetables.
Best and cheapest fruits that offers plenty of nutrition
They say, an apple a day, keep doctors away and they say so for a reason. Listed below are some of the best yet cheapest fruits that cost less, but offer plenty of nutrition to keep you fit and healthy.
Now coming to the fruits, banana is an important one and cheaply available which makes it among the top foods that cost less but offer loads of nutrition. They are the powerhouse of nutrients with the presence of Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, potassium and manganese in them in good amounts. Also, they are loaded with dietary fiber that also is proved to keep your digestive issues at bay as well as promote healthy weight loss and prevent the occurrence of diabetes.
So, you can easily eat the bananas as a great snack whenever you feel like.
I love oranges and I am sure most of us do. They are one of the healthiest fruits and are also very cost effective. They are loaded with Vitamin C that meets the daily vitamin C requirement of your body. They are also rich in Vitamin B, fiber, calcium, potassium and other nutrients that are immensely beneficial for your healthy living.
Eating oranges in adequate amounts is also great in easing any kind of inflammation. They also provide great protection to your heart and prevents the occurrence of obesity and diabetes. You can eat oranges on their own or by mixing them with salads, smoothies etc.
Well, you already know that an apple a day keeps your doctor away and if your financial problem is restricting you from eating it, then worry not as apples are not at all expensive. In fact, each one of must eat the juicy ones often. Several studies have shown the apple phytochemicals to have several health benefits. Apples are loaded with fiber that makes them very effective in promoting healthy weight loss as well as balancing the blood sugar levels in your body.
Moreover, apples also contain Vitamin C, Vitamin B and other nutrients that keep you healthy throughout the year. They also lower the inflammation in body and fight several chronic diseases.
Berries are good to taste and are equally healthy and so if you have a budget issue and still want to eat them, then frozen berries are good for you. They are loaded with antioxidants that makes them one of the top foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. These berries are great in preventing several chronic diseases like heart failures, Alzheimer’s disease and cancer.
Some of the noted nutrients found in the berries are Vitamin C, Vitamin K, fiber, manganese etc. which are all important for your body.So, include these berries anytime as a healthy snack or as dessert or mix them with salads and smoothies.
You can also include the juicy kiwis in your diet chart as they are not just good to taste and nutritious but also are low in price. One of the major reasons why kiwis are good for your immune system is because of the presence of Vitamin C that is very essential for your immunity. They are also rich in fiber, potassium, Vitamin K and other antioxidants that as per studies prevents the occurrence of several chronic diseases.
In fact, kiwis are particularly needed for a healthy heart as they increase the levels of good cholesterol HDL and reduce the bad LDL in body. Also, they keep your blood pressure under control that further is good for your heart.
Cheapest and best dairy products that offers plenty of nutrition
Dairy products like milk, cheese, yogurt etc offers plenty of nutrition that helps us stay fit and healthy. Here are some of the best dairy products that one can eat to stay fit and healthy within budget.
You can include the cottage cheese in your diet. It is healthy as well as very affordable. It is a great source of protein which helps you meet up the daily protein requirement of your body. It is efficient in helping you control your appetite and eventually leads to healthy weight management.
Cottage cheese also contains good amount of calcium and phosphorous that helps you take care of your oral problems. So, you can definitely try it out and mix it with various fruits or salads to add up the taste.
Great taste and highly healthy, yogurt is something that one finds hard to miss. And, if you are thinking about the price, let me ensure you that it is one of the top foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. The top nutrients that you get from yogurt are protein, Vitamin, calcium, phosphorous, zinc etc. all of which are great for a healthy living.
Most importantly, most of the yogurt varieties are probiotic in nature and as per studies, you already know how much beneficial it is for health. So, do not miss out the healthy yogurts ad enjoy the taste and the health benefits of them.
Let’s face it, you need milk in your day to day life and given its affordable price, it is definitely one of the top foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. Just one cup of whole milk is a powerhouse of nutrients with rich amounts of protein, calcium, vitamin B and D, and phosphorous being the significant ones.
It is also important to drink milk and its various dairy products on a frequent basis as studies have shown that it can actually help you get rid of osteoporosis, diabetes, dementia, heart problems and even prevent several types of cancers. So make sure, you are drinking milk frequently.
Grains and legumes that costs less and offers more
Beans and legumes contain essential nutrients like dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals and protein and can easily become the meat substitutes. Listed below are the essential grains that can help you stay healthy and fit within your monthly food budget.
Now, as far as the grains and legumes concerned, the first thing that comes to my mind is brown rice. Brown rice is extremely nutritious as well as is low in price. It contains lots of nutrients like fiber, carbs, magnesium, Vitamin B, manganese and phosphorus. The nutritious brown rice is proved to provide you with several health benefits with diabetes and heart problems taking the centre stage.
Adequate consumption of brown rice can also help you in promoting healthy weight control and help you stay fit and energetic. So, do not forget to include this easily cooked as well as cheap brown rice in your diet.
Most of the us love oats and knowing that it is one of the cheapest healthy foods, I bet you will start loving it more. Oats are rich in powerful nutrients with huge amounts of Vitamin B, manganese, iron, zinc, phosphorus and magnesium in it. It is also very rich in fiber that as per studies help you get rid of your digestive problems as well as balance your cholesterol and blood sugar levels in your body. Reports also show that it helps to control your appetite and keeps you full for long.
In fact, not just these, oatmeal with its richness in vitamins, fiber and several minerals is also great in preventing diabetes, heart problems, obesity etc.
The nutritious beans are very healthy as well as budget friendly. They contain large amounts of fiber, folate, potassium, iron, potassium and several other vitamins and minerals. Further, they are a rich source of plant-based proteins which according to research helps in weight maintenance and muscle strength.
Eating good amounts of canned beans is also good for your heart and in preventing diabetes. They will control your cholesterol andblood sugar levels that will help you stay fit and healthy.
Dried lentils are also among the top foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. Some of the top nutrients in them are folate, iron, copper, magnesium, which are good for your health. They are also a good source of fiber and protein that helps in effective weight control.
Lentils also contain several other antioxidants that are good to ease your problem of inflammation. They also help your body fight several chronic problems like cancer and diabetes. Research has also found out that if you eat lentils in good amounts it can also keep your blood pressure and cholesterol issues at bay that further helps you in keeping the most important organ i.e. your heart healthy.
Other foods that costs less but are loaded with nutrients
Our body require protein and even if there are non-meat food products which are high protein, listed below are some of the best foods that costs less and offers a number of nutrients and vitamins for us to stay healthy and fit.
There are actually very few people on this planet who does not love eggs. I mean eggs are extremely healthy, good to taste and very affordable. They can be easily cooked and you can literally use them in anything you want. They are extremely rich in protein and other antioxidants that is good for any kind of inflammation and also for your eyes.
Also, your body gets almost all kind of minerals and vitamin with egg consumption. In addition, they also contain, choline that as per research is very good for your brain. So, keep eating eggs and enjoy the taste and the health benefits.
Fishes are great for your health but if you are worried about the price, then you can go for the canned fishes as they are cheaper than the fresh seafoods. However, that does not mean they are not nutritious. In fact, they are an excellent source of protein and omega 3 fatty acids, that is great for proper cognitive function as well as helps to soothe the inflammations. .
Also, you get good amount of selenium from them that is efficient for boosting up your immune system as well as in preventing cancers. In addition, if you buy canned fishes with bones then you will also get calcium, Vitamin D and phosphorus in good amounts.
Chickens are one of the most popular foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition. In fact, the chicken breasts are really cheap but very tasty and healthy to eat. They contain high amounts of protein and amino acids that are good for your health.
You get various vitamins and minerals like Vitamin B6, niacin, phosphorous, selenium and magnesium from them which are really important for a healthy system. So, include them in your diet in adequate amounts and get rid of the health problems like obesity, diabetes, heart problems and cancers.
It is one of the cheapest variety of meat and you can definitely try it out. Pork is equally nutritious with lots of proteins, vitamins, selenium, iron, phosphorus and zinc in it. Hence, eating pork improves your exercise performance and also promote muscle growth and maintenance.
Therefore, make sure you eat pork in adequate amounts. However, try to eat the unprocessed ones after cooking them properly.
Over to you
Eating proper balanced healthy nutritious food is the best way to stay fit and active. But sometimes, due to high price many of us often avoid certain foods that are otherwise very nutritious. However, that does not mean you cannot eat healthy foods. Many believe that all healthy foods are expensive but trust me they are not. In fact, there are many foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition and that is the cheapest ways to stay healthy.
I, in this article have jotted down the names of various foods that are cheap but at the same time very healthy. For your convenience, I have mentioned them categorically so that it would help you when you go to the market to buy them. Make sure you include all the above-mentioned reasonable and healthylegumes, fruits, grains, vegetables, dairy products and the other protein rich foods in your diet in adequate amounts and stay fit and strong forever.
Are you searching for foods that are healthy but costs less? Well, then my list of top 23 foods that cost less but offer lots of nutrition will definitely help you up. So, try out each of them and share your feedback in the comments section. You can also give suggestions regarding it. And, if you found the post interesting, please do like, comment and share it with others.
Until then, stay healthy, stay fit, stay happy.
Eliana the chief editor at bodyandbeans is a professional yoga instructor and a fitness freak. She has done her master’s in history from Kolkata University. She is passionate about healthy eating and living practices.