NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - A lot of people think that buying healthier foods means spending more money. We tend to equate words like organic and all-natural with expensive, but that's not the case at all.
Something as simple as choosing more plant-based proteins can help you save more than $40 every time you shop, according to Jackie London, Good Housekeeping's nutrition director.
Jackie says the motto at Good Housekeeping is "live healthfully." They're always looking to make eating better and making more nutritious food choices without sacrificing taste, time, or money a bit easier.
Not sure where to start? Go for beans (or "pulses" as the pros call them) instead of meats. Jackie says you can save $8 or more choosing protein-packed pulses like beans, chickpeas, lentils, or edamame instead of animal protein like chicken or beef. What makes pulses so amazing, she says, is that they have important minerals -- like magnesium, potassium, and calcium -- that are crucial for good health.
Swap nuts and seeds for deli meats and save about $10. Jackie suggests throwing them into salads or on soups. If you're making a sandwich, reach for nut butters. Jackie says cutting back on deli meat in favor of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich is a super simple and easy fix. It's a more nutritious lunch choice that is an affordable way to get additional fiber.
Trade smoothies and fruit juices for low-fat yogurt, which is more filling. Jackie says unsweetened Greek-style yogurt can save you $13 versus some of those sweetened smoothie drinks that you find at the supermarket. She is not a fan of all the added sugar in those pricey drinks.
Cottage cheese is a more nutritious and affordable replacement for expensive imported cheeses. It has about 1 percent milk fat, which means you're cutting back on the saturated fat while still getting a lot of protein, Jackie says. Cottage cheese is filling and tastes great with late-summer tomatoes in salads or in place of a higher-fat cheese like burrata or even mozzarella on pizza.
Add blueberries to your salads. They're in season and cost just a few dollars a pint. A cup of berries gives you 8 to 9 grams of fiber per serving, which is fantastic, Jackie says.
You're getting protein from a lower saturated-fat source than meat and you're also getting fiber, which is going to keep you fuller longer.
When in doubt, Jackie says, put an egg on it. She suggests adding an egg when you're sautéing vegetables. She also loves eggs on soups and chili, and, of course, for breakfast. Do you need to cut out the yolk? Jackie says no, you want at least one yolk. That's where you'll find most of the nutrients in eggs, especially one called choline, which is extremely important for brain health and development.
We should all be eating more fish. Jackie suggests canned versions because they're reasonable and they last. Sardines, anchovies, salmon, and tuna are all great options. If you can take the heat, add some hot sauce to that fish or whatever you're eating. Jackie says spicier foods help us to slow down.
Staying mindful while we eat is an important part of staying healthier for the long term and losing weight in general.
Good Housekeeping has also launched a Nutritionist Approved Emblem. Look for it when you're shopping to help you make smarter choices. It designates foods that use simple ingredients, and make both authentic and appropriate claims in their labeling. These products are both convenient and healthful.