Eating healthier is commonly viewed as a more expensive lifestyle. This doesn't need to be true. There are simple steps you can take to reduce food costs and improve health.
Quality Calories Matter
If you've been eating processed foods like potato chips cooked in canola oil, candy bars with refined sugars, wheat crackers, sodas (diet or not) you're contributing to your body's inflammation while also filling it with empty calories. Empty calories are derived from foods with no nutrients. Many people get in to a habit of eating till they feel full and then eating again with no thought of nutrition (only thought is on feeling satisfied for a moment). The problem here is lack of nutrients and also satiety. You're always hungry when you consume empty calories and loads of carbohydrates. Most people who eat unhealthy food feel tired an hour after eating and then are hungry again. Constantly eating food costs a lot of money (even if the food seems cheap). In order to save money and improve health, you're going to need to remove empty calories from your diet. A few things get easier when you do this, one of which involves how often you eat.
Fasting is going without food for a period of time. When a person becomes fat adapted they no longer require constant feeding.
What does fat adapted mean?
A fat adapted person is one who switched their primary caloric input from carbohydrates to fat. The majority of their calories come from high quality fat sources. Their body mostly utilizes fat (creates ketones) rather than using glucose for energy.
What happens when you become fat adapted?
The body undergoes a change - primarily from being a sugar burner to being a fat burner. The Keto diet is the most common way to becoming a fat burner... rather than a sugar burner. A sugar burner is a person who primarily eats carbs throughout the day. Their body is accustomed to using insulin to manage the higher than needed carbohydrate intake. The big problem here is the reliance on insulin, over time this leads to insulin resistance. Many people who eat in this way develop diabetes among other costly health concerns.
Most people eating high amounts of carbs:
- Are irritable when their glucose levels fall (hangry)
- Feel tired during the day
- Constantly feed - upwards of 15+ hours a day
- Have metabolic problems
- Are pre-diabetic or diabetic
On the flip side, a person who is fat adapted (in ketosis, generally) rarely feels hungry and is able to fast (abstain from eating) for longer periods of time. This is accomplished by eating a high percentage of fat in their diet (typically in excess of 70% of calories during every feeding). To start, reduce your feeding window to 10 hours every day. Make this your lifestyle and improve on occasion. There are many people finding great success in relation to cognitive function, weight loss, and overall health (including insulin sensitivity and reduction of metabolic syndrome symptoms). Every day should include a 14 hour window with ZERO calories. However, you should drink water and make sure you're getting ample amounts of high quality sodium, magnesium, calcium, and potassium (all of which have no calories). These salts will help maintain balance in relation to your body's need of electrolytes. As your comfort level rises with a 10 hour feeding window, move to 9, 8, 7, and then 6. Alternate, and on occasion go for a full 24 hours with no calories. If you haven't done this before it sounds daunting. Don't worry, it gets easier. It's natural. We're living in a time so far removed from our ancestors. Fasting was common by necessity. Another big benefit of fasting is autophagy. On a cellular level your body performs better given the chance to enter autophagy. One of the best ways to accomplish this is by fasting. This all brings us back to how expensive keto and paleo can be. When you naturally reduce your feeding window every day your health improves in addition to a sharp reduction of your grocery bill.
Eating for Nutrients (Eating Paleo)
There are a lot of people doing keto wrong. Keto is simply counting macronutrients. That's all it is.
A typical Keto diet looks like this: Calorie Percentages: (70% Fat / 20% Protein / 10% Carbs) This is just a general concept percentages will differ.
There are a lot of bad ingredient foods that have high fat and low carb counts. That doesn't mean they're good for you! This is why Paleo plays such a large roll in a healthy eating regimen.
- Grains (wheat, corn, quinoa, rice, etc.)
- Refined Sugars
- Highly Refined Oils (canola, vegetable, peanut, corn, etc.)
- Dairy (though we think a moderate amount is acceptable - we call this lacto-paleo)
- Legumes (beans, lentils, peas, peanuts, etc.)
- Artificial Sweeteners (aspartame, saccharin, sucralose, etc.)
- Processed Foods (donuts, processed meats, fruit juices, etc.)
Avoiding these foods will provide a good baseline of where to focus. The higher quality foods you eat the better your body will function. A two pronged approach to improving health while maintaining or reducing the overall grocery bill is to incorporate a keto protocol within a paleo lifestyle.
Why Eating Keto / Paleo Isn't More Expensive
- You'll be fasting (not eating) for longer periods of time. This will be natural - not forced. You'll be saving money on those snacks and you may even find yourself wanting to skip a meal. + You will NOT have the same desires to constantly feed.
- Your body will be receiving higher quality nutrients - This means your body will feel satisfied due to the fact it's receiving very rich, nutrient dense foods. No more empty calories, you'll be eating with a purpose - all while eating less.
- You'll be sick less - which means less time at the Doctor's office and less on prescriptions. A healthier body costs less to maintain.
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The information provided on this website is meant for informational purposes only. This information should not be construed as personal, medical advice.