You are trying to lose fat while still spending as little money as possible. Most people say it can’t be done, but you don’t believe that BS; so you decided to do your research. Smart decision, because it definitely can be done. You can 100% lose fat while eating healthy, and it can be done by eating cheap healthy foods.
You see, I was one of those people who thought it couldn’t be done, until, well, I did it.
The irony is that I did it by spending less money than when I was eating unhealthy! And no, they are not hard to prepare; my cooking skills are probably a one out of ten, and I was still able to cook delicious meals with these foods.
So don’t let anything stop you from changing your life and finally getting the body you want. Here are # cheap healthy foods that helped me lose 17 lbs, and led to my abs finally being revealed after years of a beer belly!
To lose fat and retain as much muscle mass you must keep your protein uptake high. The universal protein intake most people recommend for holding on to that muscle is 1gram per pound of body weight. Personally, I don’t think you need that much. I did just fine by eating 3/4 grams per pound of body weight.
Either way, ground beef is an excellent source for you to get that precious protein your muscles need, and it’s probably one of the cheapest of all the kinds of beef. Ground beef was my primary source of protein during my fat loss journey.
Another thing I love about ground beef is that it’s easy to make; you can fry it in a pan for ten minutes after just adding some salt, and it will taste delicious.
You can also enjoy all the benefits of beef like:
- Creatine: Helps with endurance, and building muscle.
- L-Carnitine: A nutrient your body needs to metabolize and burn fat.
- Fatty Acids: Help with inflammation in the body.
- Vitamins B: Reduce aging, helps avoid heart disease and aides neurological functions like sleeping.
- Among others: Iron, carnosine, magnesium, potassium, zinc, glutathione, vitamin D.
Price per Half a pound: About $2
Servings: About 1
The time it takes to prepare: 10 min for fried
Carbs: 0, Protein: 44 grams, Fat: 22 grams
Eggs were my second major source of protein during my fat loss, and it is my second favorite out of my cheap healthy foods list.
Eggs are also super cheap and carry a hefty amount of protein (6grams) in each egg. They are super easy and quick to make too, and there are many ways in which you can eat them; scrambled, fried, boiled, and even raw. Therefore it will be a very long time before you get tired of eating eggs.
Many people will say that eating too many eggs is bad for you, but that statement is still highly debated among researchers. Eating up to 5 eggs in a day should be fine, as long as you’re not overeating other high-fat foods, and you’re getting some omega 3’s in your system.
And if you’re someone who can eat a lot, then eggs will be good for you since they can be quite filling.
You can also enjoy the benefits of eggs like:
- Raise HDL “good cholesterol.”
- Contain Choline: a nutrient used to produce cell membranes, and produce signaling molecules in the brain.
- May reduce the risk of heart disease
- Contain Lutein and Zeaxanthin: Antioxidants That Have Major Benefits for eye health
- Among others are: Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA, Folate: 5% of the RDA, vitamin B5: 7% of the RDA, Vitamin B12: 9% of the RDA, Vitamin B2: 15% of the RDA,
phosphorus: 9% of the RDA, Selenium: 22% of the RDA; decent amounts of vitamin D, vitamin E, vitamin K, vitamin B6, calcium and zinc
Price: About $6 for 30 eggs
Serving: About 3 eggs per serving gives you 10 portions
The time it takes to prepare: 4 min for scrambled
Carbs: 0, Protein: 18 grams, Fat: 15 grams
What I love most about bananas is the versatility of ways in which you can use them. You can put them in your shake, you could eat it in a peanut butter sandwich, or you can eat it all by itself.
Personally, I like to eat them all by itself with my steak and avocado for lunch. Bananas are sweet, so they satisfy your sweet tooth, and they are quite filling. The best thing is that they are made up of fructose, the healthier type of sugar that most fruits contain.
Bananas are also perfect for taking on the go; they are portable food. Taking them to the gym and eating one before or during your workout is a great way to avoid cramps.
Like the previous two foods, bananas are very filling and extremely cheap; making them a great way to save money and still be satisfied.
You can also enjoy the benefits of bananas like:
- High in vitamin B6: Metabolize carbs and fats; produce red blood cells; remove unwanted chemicals from the body; maintain a healthy nervous system.
- Manganese: good for the skin
- Potassium: heart health and blood pressure
- Among others: vitamin C, aide in digestion
Price: About $0.60 per pound
Serving: 1 banana
The time it takes to prepare: 0
Carbs: 27 grams, Protein: 1.3 grams, Fat: 0.4 grams
I didn’t find out about hummus until later in life, but man I’m glad I found it late than never because this food is simply tastebud heaven. And it is high in plant protein, meaning it also gives you a boost in your muscle repair abilities! Just one serving (3.5oz) can give you almost 8 grams of protein.
I usually eat my hummus for breakfast with a slice of whole wheat pita bread; this perfectly accompanies my eggs in the morning. You can also add a teaspoon of olive oil and turmeric powder for max taste and health benefits.
You can make your hummus by buying all the ingredients and searching up the recipe online, or you can just buy it already made at Publix as I did.
Hummus also has a well-balanced array of macro-nutrients, with the following in a 3.5 oz serving;
Carbs: 14.3 grams
Protein: 7.9 grams
Fats: 9.6 grams
You can also enjoy the benefits of Hummus like:
- Contains chickpeas, which have shown to reduce inflammation and reduce heart disease.
- High in dietary fiber: promotes digestive health and feeds your good gut bacteria.
- Hummus is free of gluten, dairy, and nut.
Price: $3.30 for 10 Oz
Serving: 1 tablespoon
The time it takes to prepare: 0
Whole Grain Pita Bread
Of course, you need Pita bread to go along with the hummus; it would be a sin not to do it.
Pita bread also tastes delicious, and it’s a small and controlled portion of carbs. Pita is one of my primary sources of carbs; I usually eat one slice in the morning with the hummus and four scrambled eggs.
Preparing it is also super easy and quick! Just put one portion of pita bread in a small oven for 3 min, and it’s all done! I love my pita soft and warm, so that’s why I only do 3 min, but if you like it toasted better, then leave it in there a little longer.
You can do white pita or whole grain, the calorie or macronutrient difference is pretty much identical. Although I do prefer whole grain because it is a better source of fiber; therefore it’s better for your gut.
You can also enjoy the benefits of whole wheat pita like:
- Complex carbs for energy and muscle retainment
- Fiber for better digestion
- Among others; iron, magnesium, manganese, selenium, phosphorus, thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, folate.
Price: About $2.60 for 6 pieces
Serving: 1 slice of pita bread
The time it takes to prepare: 2 min in the oven
Carbs: 7 grams, Protein: 5 grams, Fat: 1.5 grams
I use to be a person that ate either rice or pasta with every lunch or dinner portion. So when it came time to drop both of them to cut fat, it was quite hard for me. I had to find a healthier replacement, that was still a dense carb, but not as unhealthy.
So I chose Sweet Potato!
With sweet potato, I still get that satisfying feeling of satiety after I eat, so I don’t miss the rice or the pasta. Also, sweet potato is pretty easy to make, I boil it for 15 to 20 min, then peel it, and WALLA! It’s ready to eat!
You can also enjoy the benefits of sweet potato like:
- Rich in vitamin A: Antioxidant that improves the function of almost every major organ
- High in fiber: feed the good bacteria in your gut, and help reduce the risk of heart disease
- High concentrations of carotenoids: help improve vision, and minimize the risk of cancer
- High in magnesium: which can help reduce anxiety and depression
- Among others: good source of vitamin C, iron, choline, manganese, copper.
Price: About $1.29 per pound
Serving: Half a pound
The time it takes to prepare: 20 min to cook while boiling.
Carbs: 186 grams, Protein: 2.3 grams, Fat: 0.4 grams
Mom always said it, “eat your broccoli, it’s good for you,” and yes, mom was right!
There is just something about including broccoli into my diet that makes me feel like I’m covering all the bases when it comes to healthy eating. And I wasn’t wrong; research now shows that broccoli is, in fact, one of the best greens for cancer prevention, digestion, mental acuity, and many other positives.
I usually buy my broccoli frozen, and I steam it for 10 minutes before I eat it. Typically, a little salt and pepper takes care of the taste factor for me, but you can get creative with the seasoning.
You can also enjoy the benefits of broccoli like:
- High levels of glucoraphanin: a powerful antioxidant that helps reduce inflammation.
- Broccoli is among the cruciferous veggies that may reduce the risk of cancer.
- High in fiber: helps with a healthy bowel movement process.
- Among others: High in vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin B9.
Price: About $6.49 for 52oz
Serving: 1 cup
The time it takes to prepare: 15 to prepare steamed.
Carbs: 9.2 grams, Protein: 3.9 grams, Fat: 0.5 grams
I wasn’t a big fan of avocado up until recently; now I love it! The remarkable thing about avocado is that it’s right at any time of the day; I eat it for either breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
When I eat avocado for breakfast, I usually eat the Hass avocados which I accompany with a couple of eggs and a slice of pita bread with hummus.
The avocado does a great job of filling me up, and it has the necessary fiber and healthy fats for my body to work optimally.
Make sure when you go to buy the avocados, that you buy a few ripe ones to eat immediately, and a few green ones for later days. I purchased all ripe avocados one
You can also enjoy the benefits of avocado like:
- More potassium than a banana: potassium intake is linked to reduced blood pressure, which is a significant risk factor for heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure
- Heart-Healthy Monounsaturated Fatty Acids: Reduce inflammation and risk for cancer.
- Loaded with fiber: Precious food for you good gut bacteria.
- Among others: antioxidants, Vitamin K, Folate, Vitamin C, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Vitamin E.
Price: About $4.00 for a bag of 5 Hass avocados
Serving: 1 avocado
The time it takes to prepare: 0.
Carbs: 2 grams, Protein: 3 grams, Fat: 21 grams
Last but not least is canned tuna. I use tuna as a late night snack in case I get hungry, and I don’t want to prepare a big meal. Tuna is all ready to eat from the can, so it’s super easy to pop open the can get down that protein filled meat.
If you don’t enjoy the taste of tuna by itself, then you can always add some light mayonnaise and salt; trust me, it will taste delicious!
One last thing, DO NOT FORGET THE CAN OPENER!
You can also enjoy the benefits of tuna like:
- Omega 3 Fatty acids: Increases HDL cholesterol which helps you prevent fatty residues from accumulating in the arteries.
- Vitamin B-12: provides energy for the body
- Contains cancer-preventing antioxidants
- Among others: Selenium, Vitamin C, Manganese
Price: About $8.00 for 8 cans
Serving: 1 can
The time it takes to prepare: 0.
Carbs: 1 gram, Protein: 10 grams, Fat: 1 gram
It is neither hard nor expensive to eat healthy, as I have shown you with the food choices in this article. You just have to want it bad enough, and plan ahead.
Therefore, if you really want to lose weight, then head to your local Walmart or Costco, and buy the mentioned cheap healthy foods. Eating them while also exercising, plus fasting, will for sure give you the results you so desperately desire.