How to Maintain a High Protein Diet Without Breaking the Bank
It seems like everyone is crazy about protein these days. “High in protein” is the newest selling feature, replacing “low in fat” or “low-sodium” in popularity and seemingly in importance. Protein is essential to the building of lean muscle and fueling your body in a healthy and efficient way. More recently, you’ll hear of high protein diets that are often utilized by those who want to lose weight.
No matter the motivation behind your high-protein preferences, whether its weight-loss or body building, keeping your lifestyle choice affordable is often a struggle. It seems like everything that tends to be high in protein has a proportionally high price tag.
If you are looking for ways to cut the fat on your grocery bill as well as your body, try these thrifty tips:
Embrace the Egg
Eggs are the best bang for your buck when it comes to protein content for your dollar. You can get a dozen for under $2 and can cook them in a variety of ways, from scrambled, to boiled, to fried, and in dishes like omelets, quiches, frittatas, and more. If you are concerned about your cholesterol levels, limit how many yolks you use for each meal, and when necessary, increase your ratio of egg whites to yolks. If you don’t like the idea of throwing the yolks away, your family cat or dog will benefit from the healthy fats they contain.
Buy in Bulk
Whether it comes to buying lean beef, chicken breasts or nuts, you’ll often find that the more you buy at a time, the better the unit price. If you are a single or small household, it can seem backwards to buy twenty breasts at a time, but it could mean a lot of savings over the longer term. Freeze whatever lean meats you won’t eat within the next couple of days and defrost the night before you plan on preparing them. As for the nuts, keep them in an air-tight container in your pantry. This idea can be further compounded when coupled with a sale or promotion at the time of your purchase.
Take a Shake
We know that protein powder can seem very expensive, but the amount of protein you can get from just two scoops is incomparable to anything else you will get at that price. The great part is that it is both portable and easy to prepare, meaning that you don’t need to spend a lot of time or money in assembling it into a meal. Most choose to have a shake as a post-workout meal, a quick breakfast to go, or an easy lunch. Remember that most protein shakes can be treated as meal replacements, and if you calculate the price of one as a meal, you’ll find that it is the best deal in town!
Fall in Love with the Legumes
Legumes like beans are not just a great source of protein, they are also very high in protein while having a very low sale price. Whether you use the dried or canned variety, experiment with meals that incorporate these nutritional powerhouses such as soups, chilli, burritos, spreads and more. Don’t forget about the versatile chick pea or garbanzo bean which is the base of popular hummus. Try making your own unique versions at home to use as a fun dip or spread.
Feel comfortable with your high-protein grocery list by adapting some of these tips in your weekly visit to the store. Losing weight shouldn’t be made even more difficult by having it affect your personal financial bottom line.