Eat Well, Spend Less: A Guide to Eating Healthy on a Budget

We pilot you through the diverse options in our guide to shopping smart and eating well.

| July/August 2011

The path to healthy, low-cost eating offers many entry points. We pilot you through the diverse options in our guide to shopping smart and eating well.

Buy in Season 

WHY? Like most goods and services, foods cost less when they are more abundant. Choose to eat foods during their peak season, and you’ll enjoy not only a happier price point, but amped-up nutrition and flavor, as well.

HOW? Choose your state and search by month or by vegetable to find out what’s in season where you live at the NRDC's Eat Local page.

WHAT’S NEXT? Eating seasonally is also the easiest way to...

Buy Locally 

WHY? When you spend $1 on food, not all that much of it goes to the actual food producer. Some of your dollar goes to the person who grew it, while some goes to the person who picked it; some goes to the company who processed, packaged and transported it; and some goes to the firm that designed the packaging and advertising. Some of your dollar ends up in the hands of the grocery store owner, and, hopefully, also in the hands of some of the store’s employees. If someone was involved with your food, they will need to profit from their involvement. The more food you purchase locally, the more pennies from your dollar stay in your own pocket, and in your community’s economy (of which you are a beneficiary).

HOW? Find farms, restaurants, food co-ops and other great local food resources through Find farmer’s markets nationwide with the USDA's National Farmer's Market Search Engine.

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