onsdag 1 maj 2013

5 Steps to Eating Well and Saving Money

Eating well on a student budget in Uppsala takes practice but it can easily be done by taking a few simple steps. By being more aware of portion sizes, how and where you shop, and by spending more time in the kitchen, you can reduce your food waste and the waste of resources that goes along with over-consumption and discarded food.

an aisle at a grocery store

1. Use smaller serving plates
It might seem strange at first, but it is actually quite practical. Serving sizes have increased dramatically and average size of plates themselves has increased by approximately 30% in recent decades. By dishing up smaller portions, you'll be more aware of over-consumption and be less likely to experience bloating, weight gain and food comas. Reducing your portion sizes will be great for your wallet too and maybe even save you time and money spent at the gym.

2. Eat less processed foods
Highly processed and packaged foods might seem cheap and convenient, but the low nutritional density in these foods will leave you craving more and can easily lead to overindulgence of calories.  Eat less refined processed foods and your body will thank you for it.

3. Cook at home
With lower priced meals available at the student nations, it's easy to understand why so many of us rarely cook at home. It's convenient and social, but the downside is that few of us are actually aware of what ingredients are used and the costs can quickly add up. By cooking at home, you can control what ingredients go into your meal and ensure that you eat a healthy and diverse diet. By sharing the cost with a few friends, you can eat well and enjoy a great social atmosphere any time at home.

4. Shop at the farmers' market
If you can buy fresh fruits and vegetables at the local farmers' market, do it! You'll be supporting more sustainable small-scale agriculture, helping the local economy and protecting the environment. The foods you'll be able to buy will be in season and produced locally which means they will be packed full of nutrients from the shorter storage and transportation times, and they'll taste better too!
You can find out more about farmers' markets in Uppsala here https://www.facebook.com/bondensegen

5. Buy dry goods in bulk
Whole grains and legumes are cheap and are full of protein, fiber, and other important nutrients; all of which can help you feel fuller for longer. Try to buy your grains, beans, seeds, nuts, pasta, and rice in bulk. Most supermarkets have a section where you can scoop as many nuts as you want into a bag and pay by weight. You'll find that by avoiding the pre-packaged products, you'll be able to save lots of money. Dry goods are able to be stored in the cupboard for long periods of time so if you see large quantities on sale, don't be afraid to buy up.

Cathy Xiao Chen

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