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How to Save Money and Eat Well
make a list
We all want to save money; to reduce spending and be able to save for the future. There are a number of ways to do this. One I like is the practice of paying myself first.
Each and every time I get paid or otherwise come into some money I pay myself a percentage first, before making any other payments.
Develop this practice and you are taking an important step to having savings.
Food is where most people make cuts when trying to reduce spending. There are a number of ways; reducing meat consumption is one. Beans and lentils make great protein substitutes for meat and there are many recipes out there so you can find a few that match your family’s preferences.
Buying in bulk when fruits and vegetables are in season is another way to reduce your overall spending. However, to make this work to the fullest you will need to learn how to preserve your food in some way. There are a number of ways to preserve food and while I generally prefer to dry my food, do what works for you.
I do not have much storage space or a big freezer which can be a worthwhile investment so the dried fruits are easy to keep.
I prefer to shop local and while in the short run this does not save money as items can be more expensive, it does contribute to the local economy so my money is going towards retaining existing jobs where I live and perhaps even encouraging new businesses which will employ people.
Do you have a budget? A written document that details what you spend where? Does it include the money you spend on buying your morning coffee at a drive through or when you stop at the coffee shop near work? Money spent on food outside the house whether it be snacks lunch, coffee, pop, water or donuts, needs to be taken into account when examining your food budget.
The money you spend on food and drinks outside the home are where you can realize your first savings. Make your own coffee, get a thermos and take it with you.
Pack a lunch. When you bring your own lunch and coffee to work not only do you save money but you save something even more valuable, your time. Money you can earn, time, once spent, is gone forever.
Perhaps the most important tool for saving money on food is the shopping list. The night before you shop do an inventory of what you need, make a list and stick to the list.
The second most important tool is to eat before you grocery shop, when you are hungry snacks and high calorie but low nutrition foods call to you, if you habit is under control your shopping will be.