Fresh & Fit Friday (Healthy vs. Unhealthy Food Costs)

I often hear that a major reason people choose less healthy food options is because more healthy options are more expensive. While this may generally be true, especially for produce, it's about what you choose that has the biggest impact on the cost of groceries. 

There is a lot to think about on a grocery shopping excursion. For example:  Meal-planning, considering the food's shelf-life, cost-evaluating, and now, more frequently, determining the nutritional value and health benefits of foods.

When I asked the store associates if eating healthy is more expensive, they said, "Yes, it is way more expensive." But I believe that the cost of your food is a product of what you choose. Choosing items like fresh produce can add up to more than chips and crackers, but when you look at the nutritional value of the food, your body benefits from the more costly options.

When I went shopping, I chose two random meals. (1) The traditional cheeseburger, and (2) a bean and rice burrito. Check out my shopping video, how you can build a healthy meal for cheap, and see the cost breakdown below! 

Cost Breakdown.

Bean and Rice Burrito                                 Cheeseburger

Flour Tortillas:  $1.77                                     Buns:  $1.49

Dry Seasoning:  $0.59                                 Hamburg:  $5.31

Taco Sauce:  $1.79                                        Cheese:  $2.29

Rice:  $1.19                                                     Ketchup:  $1.69

Beans:  $1.99

Total:  $7.33                                                  Total:  $10.78

When shopping, look for sale items. Dig deeper for store brand name instead of brand name products. Use Hannaford's guiding stars to help you make nutritious choices. And don't think that you have to choose unhealthy foods because healthy foods are too expensive! 

Cheaper healthy alternatives:

  • Frozen vegetables last longer, and still pack all of the nutrients, like fresh vegetables! 
  • Canned goods have more sodium, but look for canned vegetables with "low sodium."
  • Frozen fruits can be a cheap way to buy berries, or other frozen fruits, in bulk.
  • Purchase the fruit that is currently on sale.
  • Beans and lentils are low in fat, packed with protein and fiber, and are quite inexpensive!
  • Brown rice and whole grain pasta are usually cheap and are a healthy source of whole grain.

Happy shopping!

Mallory