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  Healthy Eating On A Budget  
With food and fuel prices going through the roof, the world over, it has become very important to restrict even necessary expenses, and go on a budget. While it is essential to remain healthy, you can remain healthy on a budget.

It is not difficult, when you know how. First, calculate the average monthly food expenses. Include everything from day-to-day expenses for vegetables, fruits, meat and dairy products, and the money spent on going to restaurants and pubs, etc. Once you have the average figure of the past few months, it becomes a bit easier to plan your monthly budget. Since health is a priority, eliminate all the trips made to the local donut shop. You can still visit the donut shop, but restrict it to twice or three times a month. Substitute your donut break with fresh fruits or fruit or vegetable juices. If you need to eat something crunchy, then eat a whole-wheat cracker or a couple of biscuits with a vegetable salad, and the health benefits show up almost immediately.

The main savings come during your trip to the supermarket. Check local newspapers or magazines for special offers and use food coupons, wherever possible. Buy your vegetables and fruits in larger quantities, and if possible in bags, instead of buying it on a per-piece basis. It works out to be cheaper. Trimmed and cut vegetables are also costlier, so avoid buying them. Most of the supermarkets have special schemes for juices and other canned items. Buy the ones that do not have preservatives or artificial colors and stick to the 100% natural ones instead. While buying meat products, avoid buying the boneless variety, since it is costlier.
You can also remove the fat yourself from beef, instead of buying the costlier low fat variety. Avoid red meat as much as possible and stick to white meat like chicken. It is light on your wallet and your heart too. Eat more vegetables with pasta, spaghetti, rice, etc., instead of eating too much meat. Include potato, onions, garlic, ginger, and mint in your diet. These are not only comparatively cheap, but also strengthen your immune system. When cooked with vegetables, they convert the dish into a tasty masterpiece.

Change your breakfast menu, and in case you eat high fat and high calorie items, such as fried bacon, eggs, and white bread smothered in butter. Replace these items with oatmeal, whole meal bread, egg whites, and whole-wheat muffins. You can also make a smoothie by mixing bananas or strawberries in cold milk. It is inexpensive, yet filling. In case you want to eat bacon and egg, restrict yourself to eating it once or twice a week and grill it instead of frying it. Your dinner should also be light, yet filling. Try to make pizzas and burgers at home. They will turn out to be healthier and much cheaper compared to restaurants. Instead of visiting pubs regularly, call a few friends over and enjoy your drinks with wholesome homemade food.     

So, instead of just complaining about high fuel and food prices over which you have no control, use it as an excuse to change to healthier eating habits. Combine healthy eating with an exercise regimen to save money and to lead a long and healthy life.

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