Over the last few years we have seen such a drastic change in the grocery market – what we once picked up FREE with coupons, are now a cost.
We used to have double coupons, allowing us to get SO many s0-called GREAT deals, which we proudly displayed for all of our friends to see… so that THEY knew we were getting HUGE deals.
But over time, rules were abused, and people took advantage, causing grocery stores to clamp down on their generosity – when Fry’s stopped doubling coupons, then Safeway followed soon after. And although Bashas still does, their lack of selection & prices leave a lot to be desired. Especially if you are particular about what you eat.
Instead of getting upset with doubles for ending, we were actually quite happy; it gave us a chance to look at our grocery habits, and make BIG changes. Our mentality of saving with coupons shifted, from getting cheap food to shopping for better, more quality food. I guess you could say our whole interest in better food overall emerged from that point in time.
And although we may be the minority right now as compared to others, we are happy with our choice because we know long term it will be more of a benefit for us. And quite honestly, we will tell you that we really don’t spend much MORE in the way of our grocery bill – we just shifted the habits we had to better choices, and by ridding our poor choices, we opened up that money to be used more effectively somewhere else.
Thanks to Costco for having a great selection of items; to our backyard efforts for our huge garden we grow ourselves so we can rely on our efforts instead of a grocery ad, and in the end, our kids are just as happy as they were before. Just without the junk.
But being around family and friends it can be quite evident that the feeling about eating better is not always understood, nor is it mutual. Others tend to think you are depriving your children. Some may think you are too extreme and need to loosen up. As a blogger who blogs grocery deals, I find those blogs that promote those *HOT* cheap, processed grocery items tend to perform better – their ‘deals’ garnish more shares, they get more notoriety – in the end, we are happy with our efforts and those who aren’t can simply lean towards those other sites for their information.
But all in all, we need to educate ourselves about food, and nutrition now more than ever ~ we need to know where our food COMES from.
Our agricultural system has shifted in the U.S. – and in recent weeks, we have learned that the USDA JUST revoked our grass fed label standard… that’s concerning, given that many consumers LOOK for that label when making an informed purchase.
So much of the food we eat is modified, over processed and lower in quality than you may even realize… and without efforts on YOUR part, nothing is going to change in that area.
I have spent a lot of time reading, studying and watching food documentaries – all as part of my OWN self-initiated health education. The more I learned, the more selective we became – I say “we” because my efforts were not alone. Thankfully I’m married to a man who cares just as deeply as I do about his health and the health of his children.
At some point, YOU have to care about what you are feeling yourself and family. It might not be the popular route, but it’s better for you long term.
3 Reasons to Care About Where your Food Comes From
#1 – Because big corporations and our government really don’t have YOU in their best interest. Just like others, they are out to make money – so they will sell what makes them the most. In the meantime, they will do what it takes to make the most product, for as little as possible – adding salt, sugar and fat to your diet that you may not need. If you probably saw what went into the food you eat you may probably not even eat it.
#2 – If you don’t care, then you MAY end up spending more long term. Some people MAY think that eating better requires more money (which is surely NOT the case.) Eating better requires discipline, just like saving money requires discipline. Considering many people lack the discipline to save, I’d say it’s a safe bet to say that many either don’t know what’s in their food, don’t care, or… may think that it’s not that worrisome long term. The less you spend on food may require you spend MORE on your health later on.
Today, approximately 9.5% of our income goes to food; is that brag-worthy? Not unless it’s good food – otherwise you are not any healthier from cheap, over-processed items.
#3 – Our government does NOT subsidize health food. Our country subsidizes corn – our food system pays farms to maximize production of corn. And considering that close to 90% of our corn is genetically modified your best interest is nt in mind. Notice how there are never commercials for healthy organic fruits & vegetables; they are always for those items that are not as nutritional. By caring about what you eat, you should have the discipline to look past all that information; your mind needs to serve as a filter – to block out those things that are not beneficial for your family.
So how DO you make GOOD food choices when presented with so many poor choices – perhaps Mega sales with cheap items, a really good-looking grocery ad with lots of processed items, or mainstream media (or, friends) who aren’t in it for YOUR best interest?
5 Ways You Can Make Better Food Choices
- Only eat fresh foods, that are not packaged, and limit those you buy in a box
- Get out of the supermarket and shop at your Farmers Market, where you can buy more fresh produce, that’ll help you create a diet rich in plant food (and less reliance on meat and dairy)
- Be disciplined enough to look past the GREAT deals, and only for those that you know will benefit your family
- Read our last post on 6 ways to Avoid the Temptation of Buying Unhealthy Food
- Self educate – instead of making excuses as to why you can’t eat better, make attempts to take responsibility for your actions and ditch the junk.
That means giving up the processed food, and re-routing that money (which is NOT necessarily more) to fresh produce, perhaps incorporate more organic items.
Some of these documentaries are a GREAT place to start: