Posted by: Jamie | April 30, 2010

Eat Affordably & Healthy

Source: Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension Service

Janice Hermann, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension nutrition specialist, said you can eat a budget friendly, low-sodium and heart-healthy diet without going over your budget.

“By following a reduced-fat diet can help cut calories and can lead to weight loss if you are overweight,” she said. “It’s also important to include healthy fats such as nuts, seeds, avocado, olive oil and canola oil for heart disease and stroke prevention.”

Hermann said all vegetables have different nutrients and that is why it is important to eat a variety of them.  The best way to get recommended amounts of essential nutrients needed for health is to eat a well-balanced diet containing a variety of foods and by following the USDA MyPyramid.

The MyPyramid can be found at http://www.mypyramid.gov.

Hermann suggests these budget friendly, healthy foods to add to your diet on regular a basis.

  • Dried beans and legumes are inexpensive and a good source of soluble fiber. Soluble fibers help lower cholesterol and blood pressure when replacing saturated fats.
  • Frozen vegetables bought in bulk are just as healthy as fresh vegetables and can be steamed or microwaved for easy preparation.
  • Seeds and nuts are full of heart-healthy fats, fiber and vitamins and minerals. Buy them in bulk with no added salt and portion them into single a serving, which is about ¼ cup, for a snack.
  • Water-packed canned fish, such as tuna or salmon, added to a salad is a healthy option.
  • Eggs are inexpensive and are a really good source of protein and nutrients.

A healthy diet combined with regular physical activity can assist with lowering blood pressure and cholesterol and prevent obesity.

“It is important to take the time and plan your meals and grocery lists. This will allow you to see the nutritional benefits and will also help your budget,” she said.

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