While attending university, it is tempting on every front to eat unhealthily. There is a Burgerking or Mcdonald, along with all their friends, likely right around the corner from your dorm. With little time, money, and effort willing to be put into anything else besides homework it can be really easy to slip into bad eating habits, and fast.
Regardless of your dietary and fitness goals, there are plenty of ways you can get creative and eat healthy while staying within your budget.
Drink black coffee or plain teas.
It might suck, and I know many of you like fun coffees but adding in creamers, milk, caramel, or whip cream will substantially increase the costs and add a lot of extra sugars very quickly. By rewarding yourself with these types of coffees on special occasions you will be able to save more and focus on putting that extra bit of cash towards your foods. The same goes for tea drinkers, steep your tea and consume, nothing more, nothing else.
Start Using Oats
Oats are at the top of the class when it comes to versatile foods that taste good and are cheap and nutritious. You can make overnight oats, which is a favorite of mine and easy to bring on the go, pancakes, protein bars, or simply have them with some hot water in the morning and add some brown sugar or fruits and yogurt.
If you are embarking on a health journey tracking is an important part of that process and has been proven to increase your chances of success.
For a free tool that you can use for tracking and recipe ideas check out Meta Nutrition
Buy from the manager special
In Southern California, we have manager special items in some of our grocery stores and have a range of items from fruits and veggies, yogurts, eggs, fish, meats, drinks, to canned and dried foods. You can also get some cheap candies and snacks!
The fruits and veggies can sometimes be bruised so what I like to do is blend them up for my morning smoothies. When it comes to fish and meat that you buy at a discount, try and freeze the meat ASAP, and cook the fish for lunch or dinner that day and the following.
Salads are your friend
I personally am not a huge fan of salads (weird I know for a vegetarian), but I recognize the nutritional value that they offer, diversity, and ultimately, their cheap price tag. You can buy bulk spinach or lettuce as a base for cheap and add on cucumber, tomato, and anything else for some of the cheapest costs per meal out there.
Freeze your hot meals
Chickens and pasta can be frozen and reheated easily and can be made to be healthy. There is nothing wrong with chicken alone and for pasta make sure you buy whole grain. Both of these things will be budget friendly and able to be stored for a long time. Use a basic red sauce and add some spices in and you’ll be good to go!
If you have any additional tips leave your suggestions in the comments.