Eating Healthy on a Budget Is Possible Find Out How Now

Eating healthy is a struggle for many older adults, due to high food prices, fixed incomes and physical limitations, which can make shopping and cooking a challenge.  Furthermore, with too little food or too much processed food such as salty canned soups or fatty frozen dinners, chronic conditions worsen and make eating healthy a challenge. In this article you will find valuable information, showing you it is possible to eat healthy within your budget.

Facts  You Should Know

“It is not unusual to find seniors eating cereal for dinner,” said Jennifer Hinson, the nutrition services manager at Lifelong, a nonprofit group that offers programs to people living with chronic conditions. Unfortunately,  many seniors will frequently run out of food before the end of the month, too often resulting in a poor diet.

Unfortunately, there is a reluctance among low-income older adults to use Food Stamps.  However, the use of Food Stamps could help improve the quality of eating and improve health, thus improving allover quality of life. Nationally, only a third of people age 60 and older, who qualify for the assistance program, are enrolled.  So please consider finding out if you qualify for this and other government programs for seniors.  Bear in mind, there is no shame attached to accepting government help.

Eating Healthy Ideas

To improve food availability among older people, the AARP Foundation awarded nearly $2 million in Hunger Innovation Grants this year to 10 programs nationwide that go beyond food banks.

However, Food Bank staples help provide ingredients for eating healthy meals which can be prepared simply and take nutrition, fiber, fat and salt into account. There are recipes that use easy-to-find ingredients and common food bank staples such as oats and beans.  Dishes range from familiar standards, such as spaghetti sauce with three ingredients – tomatoes-onions and garlic, to quinoa which is rich in minerals and vitamins or whole wheat pasta.

Flavor is Everything

It’s easy to fall into bad habits as you age, however, you don’t want to eat boring, bland health foods either. Those who are on low salt diets may like substitutes such as Mrs. Dash.  Personally  I like the original, however, there are a variety of combinations. This is where herbs can enhance the flavor of your food without adding sugar or fat.

The use of herbs to flavor food is great, however, fresh or dried herbs can be expensive, but there’s a way to get around that. By growing them in small pots in your kitchen, you will cut down on expenses and enjoy them year round.  Moreover, you don’t even need to purchase pots. You can plant seeds by putting small rocks or pebbles in the bottom of a container for good drainage or even a tea cup that’s not used, put soil in and plant the seed. In addition, old egg cartons are a great way to start the seeds growing and then transplant them into your containers. The seeds can be purchased at a local nursery, Walmart, Home Depot or Lowe’s Hardware stores,  or other local hardware stores like ACE.

Other Resource Ideas

Some Senior Citizen Centers have classes on nutritional cooking, which is a great way to try new things and to eat better, lose weight and help you eat more vegetables. As for healthy produce, that is pricey at the food store, try your Farmers Market.  Frequently they are lower in price at your local Farmers Market.

Eating Healthy with Some of The Most Nutritional Foods:

 greens: romaine, kale, raw spinach and collards
 carrots
 Brussels sprouts
 peppers
 squash
 sweet potatoes (yams)
 celery
 avocado
 green beans
 peas
 asparagus
 parsley
 onions
 garlic
 broccoli
 all berries
 cantaloupe
 all melons
 bananas
 mangoes
 grapefruit
 oranges
 grapes
 pineapple
 cranberries
 apples
Nuts (raw)
 almonds
 walnuts
 cashews
 brazil
Seeds (raw)
 flax
 sunflower
 pumpkin
 sesame
 oats
 millet
 quinoa
 buckwheat
 spelt
 barley
 wheat
 chick peas
 black-eyed peas
 black beans
 pinto beans
 small white beans
Fats (Healthy)
 avocado oil
 flax oil
 pumpkin oil
 olive oil
Animal Products
 wild Pacific sockeye salmon
 skinless chicken breasts
 free range eggs
 yogurt
 goat’s cheese
 cottage cheese
Natural sweeteners
 molasses
 unpasteurized honey
 frozen juice concentrates
 blended dates and raisins