30 Jun

So you just about had enough of bad eating & drinking habits and finally got the courage to change your lifestyle. You got the courage to get help, finally received the diet plan you needed to get started, or you are already on your way to achieving your health goals, and now the next hurdle has presented itself: The ever-increasing prices and the outlook of food shortages to come.

How can you possibly reach your goals and stay on track with food getting expensive and upcoming shortages?   

In this article, we will explore strategies that you can employ to master this challenge.

1. Go to the farmers  

Are you buying your fruit and vegetables from the supermarket, shiny and packed up nicely? Have you ever bought from a farm before? Now is the time to try it!   There are many reasons for it, one of them is the added price factor when foods are grown and picked, labelled, sorted, packed, distributed, priced and finally stocked on the shelves. Each link in the supply chain adds a percentage to the price you would get from the farmer directly. A comparison on apples alone: Farmers 0,20EUR per apple / Supermarket between 0.45EUR and 0.68EUR. Please see the article From Farm to Fork: How does it work

Even better, farmers will provide you with seasonal produce and rarely the imports from far-away countries. The nutritional value of your product will be higher than a supermarket apple. Please see the article Gross Secrets about Supermarket Produce Departments

There are more benefits! Apart from the direct cash saving for you and the added nutritional density, you will also reduce your carbon footprint by foregoing packaging and logistics to bring the food to your home. What is more important and above all, you support your local community and the growers need it most in these times!

2. Fasting 

Aside from weight loss, the benefits of fasting one day a week or for certain hours of each day include:

  • Blood sugar levels lowered. 
  • Blood triglyceride levels lowered. 
  • Brain health improved. 
  • Cancer risk lowered. 
  • Heart disease risk is reduced. 
  • Inflammation reduced. 
  • Insulin resistance was reduced. 
  • LDL cholesterol levels declined. 

 Source: https://www.livestrong.com/article/335557-how-to-fast-one-day-a-week-for-weight-loss/   

3. Bulk buy from specialist food stores 

Going through the basic products that form part of our diet, let's start with carbs.

Rice, Rice Noodles, and Noodles of all kinds such as Soba or Vermicelli can be bought in cheap large quantities from Asian Grocery Retailers everywhere.

Packs can range from 1kg-20kg and the savings are massive! A classic comparison for this: 1kg Tilda Basmati Rice costs approximately between €5.20 - 5.70 in the supermarket. At the Asian Grocers, you can get 10kg for €13-15 = that’s a whopping saving of around 70%! The only thing you need to be worried about is space and dry dark storage.

Let's move on to protein. At the Asian Grocery Store, you can also get good quality coconut milk with no additives and a high coconut content (most supermarket brands only go to 60%), authentic curry sauces and above all, pulses! I am not only talking about lentils. You can get all kinds of beans (mung, green, kidney,…), dried chickpeas and a great variety of tofu from smoked to all the way silken.

Don’t forget to check their fridges! Often I find real treasures such as large quantities of Bok Choy, broccoli, Long Beans, Sweet Corn, Fresh Coriander, Garlic, Ginger, and Chillies that are frequently sold at much lower prices than getting them from the supermarket specialist aisle.

4. Grow your own   

They say growing your food is like printing your own money. There is much truth to that, especially nowadays. Fruit and Veg are getting more expensive due to inflation and sparse resources that are needed to raise your food such as fertilisers.

By growing your own, you are bypassing this cost that is passed on to you as the consumer and you only need to worry about keeping your seeds from the existing harvest to bring about the next and there are plenty of organic fertilisers that you can create from your own kitchen.

Most of us have a balcony or window sill with the sun, and some of us even have a roof. If you have never dreamt of growing your own food, you should start considering it, if you want to make some small savings. Start with pots that can grow: Baby tomatoes, Herbs of all kinds and Chillies. There are some good window garden starter kits out there, but I would recommend just going to a garden centre and pulling the items together yourself for additional savings.

If you are lucky enough to have a garden or a space in the backyard, start small there as well. Map out your space according to sun and shade. Start sowing indoors according to the time of the year the pack states that you wish to grow and move them outside as soon as it is viable. Keep a garden diary, especially as a beginner, so you can analyse what went well and what didn’t.

Happy planting with some tips here: https://www.littlehouseliving.com/10-practical-tips-for-first-time-gardeners-that-you-need-to-know.html 

5. Cook & Bake from scratch 

90% of foods in the supermarket were not on the shelves 10 years ago. Convenience has snuck in and with it so has the disease, as we no longer prepare our foods from scratch due to our busy lives and the food industry is profiting from our ignorance.

How often have you seen a product recalled due to contamination or allergy warnings not adhered to? Have you been caught out when your favourite brand was shrunk in size and changed its price to something absurd? And just how will you cope when the item is just no longer available due to logistics?

It goes without saying that cooking from scratch is the most cost-effective and healthiest way to feed yourself. Learning how to cook can save you a lot of money and take care of your health.

Wheat is no longer available or priced out and you can not afford your bread? Bake your own bread! Use different flours such as Buckwheat, Spelt, Rye or even Oat! There are endless variations and you don’t need to get up at 4 am to bake your bread. Today, YouTube and Blogs are full to the brim with easy bread variations that you can make from home with as little as 30 min prep time. And don’t you love the smell of freshly baked bread in your house?

In summary, going back to our roots and how we lived 50 years ago might be a good thing after all.

We live, we yearn, we grow and we learn. 

July 2022, Ariane Loechner 

* The email will not be published on the website.