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Primal on a very very tight budget

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  • Primal on a very very tight budget

    Hi!

    I have visited the forums many times before, but never actually registered. Today however I need some help with going/staying Primal.

    My problem is as follows: I/we (a family of 4 - Mom and Dad + 1 toddler and 1 baby) have a very very tight budget - meaning, it would be very tight for a 'normal' grocery shop, let alone a primal one. However, I would really, really like to eat primal. I have gone primal before, and felt a lot better and on a CW diet. To some extent, I *need* to eat primal, as I urgently need more energy - to care for the children and then work when they sleep in the evening, as we need the income.

    So I would like to ask seasoned Groks what to buy in order to get 'the most bang for my bucks'. How to create a very cheap, yet primal/primalish menu? What can I sacrifice (eg organic vegs, or pastured chicken, or...?)?

    Thanks in advance for your help!
    Rysia

  • #2
    I hear you on this!! We are a family of 8 (Mom, dad, and 6 kiddos ages 8 and under). We went primal about 2 months ago. It hasn't been "as bad" as I thought it might be, but yes, we are spending more - probably about $200 a month more on groceries. The thing that has helped the most is simply keeping an eye on sale ads. There is a store this week that has 50% off all roasts... beef and pork of every kind. So, that's what I stocked up on this week!! Another store had 8 pounds of strawberries for $5 - I bought those. When bell peppers go on sale for 3 for a dollar we eat stuffed peppers that week. I plan my meals to some degree around the sales. Also, butter and heavy cream is a cheap source of calories. I make mashed potatoes (with cauliflower puree mixed in) with lots of butter and heavy cream to go along with meat (like the roast that I bought for 50% off) add a spinach salad (I buy organic spinach in bulk at Costco) and you have a great meal for a decent price.

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    • #3
      I'll probably be burned at the stake for saying this but if you can't afford organic, then you can't afford organic. No biggie.

      Look at the sales, figure out what kind of a menu is going to work for you that week and then do the best you can. You have already taken a huge step towards improving your family's health, don't feel bad (or let anyone else guilt you) because you aren't able to do it "perfectly".

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      • #4
        And incorporate lots of eggs! Great protein, good fat and relatively inexpensive. Again, just buy the best quality you can and avoid caged eggs if at all possible.

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        • #5
          We are a family of 3, it's just me, my husband and our son. But dang! These boys can eat! Watching the sales ad at our fav grocery store has definitely helped a ton! Also, we have many local farmers markets that are available to us almost every day of the week, so that helps too. May be an option to try as well Good luck!

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          • #6
            I should add that Costco has an amazing variety of organic produce now! A huge container of spinach for $3! Can't beat that.

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            • #7
              As other people have mentioned, you don't need to buy all organic fruits and veggies. I basically only buy organic off the dirty dozen list. Your meat doesn't have to be pastured either. Watch for sales and stock up. Potatoes and rice are cheap and filling. I feed my family of 4 on $85/week. I think the biggest step towards improving your health is dropping grains, processed foods and bad oils. After that, you do the best you can with what you have
              www.feedtheclan.com

              Check out my blog to see how a family of four eats real, whole foods on $85/week

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              • #8
                Aldi is your friend in the UK.
                Eggs are just over 2 for 15 free range
                Mince beef is under 3 for 800g (that is a frickin huge pack)
                Frozen chicken protions are less than 2 for a kilo IIRC.
                The fruit and veg is cheap, as are the nut and ground almonds.

                We are self employed, earing bugger all so living on Working Tax Credit and Child tax credit and paying a mortgage out if it (we'd be far better off on the dole in a rented house) we make do for a family of 5, and I eat a lot, on about 100 a week, sometimes less if I get to the local co-op when the meat is marked down, then we get more of a variety, we even had lamb mince and a whole duck (4) last week
                You know all those pictures of Adam and Eve where they have belly button? Think about it..................... take as long as you need........................

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                • #9
                  You don't need all organic/pastured/grass-fed whatever. It is optimal but far from mandatory. Tanya is 100% right, just dropping the grains, junk, and bad oils is primal, proceed from that point. Some pointers:
                  - As mentioned above, shop the sales! Google is your friend here. I will buy any cuts that are cheap and google how to cook them. Haven't had a bad meal yet, and discovered some new favorites along the way.
                  - Rice and potatoes. Cheap, filling, and primal. Especially for the kids, who don't generally need to be low-carb.
                  - Crock-pot. Slow cook tougher (and cheaper!) cuts of meats, make stews and chili, soups, broth...the list is endless.
                  - Offal. Usually very inexpensive versus meats, and versatile to boot. Plus tend to be very rich, so a little goes a long way in a meal.
                  - If you make smoothies, buy the cheapest fresh fruits you can find and freeze them yourself. Right now I am getting 1lb pkgs of strawberries for about $1.50. A similar quantity of frozen in stores would be easily twice as much. This is also a way to make ice cream if you are so inclined, freeze fruit (bananas work well) and blend with a touch of cream- instant ice cream!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Badkty22 View Post
                    This is also a way to make ice cream if you are so inclined, freeze fruit (bananas work well) and blend with a touch of cream- instant ice cream!
                    Oh, I am so trying this!! I think my kiddos will love it. :-)

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                    • #11
                      Rice and potatoes. Cheap, filling, and primal. Especially for the kids, who don't generally need to be low-carb.

                      I was astonished to find, however, that white rice and peeled potatoes are best! Modern conventional health advice fails me again ... : (

                      Is Rice Unhealthy? | Mark's Daily Apple
                      Are Potatoes Healthy? | Mark's Daily Apple

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                      • #12
                        Hopefully there will come a time in your life when finances improve but until then do the best you can and don't stress over it. Youve made the most important change by removing grains and processed junk.
                        Asda do a 1kg bag frozen chicken breasts for 3.99 and Aldi do the same.
                        Remember you aren't looking at meat in a SAD way any more so you can buy the cheaper less fashionable cuts of meat; belly pork stir fried to crispness is wonderful, the frozen stewing meats are excellent - bung them in a slow cooker with veg, serve with rice or pots. mince is versatile and keep and eye out for pork mince -its often cheaper than beef. Iceland's plain frozen meats are reasonable just avoid the processed,coated,flavoured crap.
                        When I'd had enough of the grain and starched based 'diabetic eating for health' diet (eating for health, my ass!) my weight was 242.5 lbs. On starting primal- 18th April 2013 weight : 238.1.
                        27th July 2013. weight after 100 days 136.9 weight lost 101.2lb ; that's 105.6lbs since I stopped the 'diabetic eating for health'
                        new journal http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...ml#post1264082

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by TanyaV View Post
                          I think the biggest step towards improving your health is dropping grains, processed foods and bad oils. After that, you do the best you can with what you have
                          Totally agree.

                          Eggs, veges, cheaper cuts of meat, soup bones and broth, milk and butter, fill up on rice and potatoes and some fruit with cream.

                          If you save the bones from a roast chicken, you can toss them in the slowcooker over night, there's broth tomorrow to be turned into chicken/vege soup. Two meals from one purchase. Same for lamb chops, for example.
                          Annie Ups the Ante
                          http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread117711.html

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                          • #14
                            Don't forget sweet potatoes! They are full of vitamins (more than most, if not all, other foods), and can be bought cheaply in many stores. Sweet potato fries, baked sweet potatoes, primal sweet potato pie, sweet potato in soups, etc. can all be very delicious. Also, sweet potatoes aren't as inflammatory as normal potatoes for some people. For example, my husband can't eat normal potatoes because they come from the nightshade family, and nightshades make his hands shake... No one wants a phlebotomist drawing their blood whose hands shake!

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                            • #15
                              Also, sweet potatoes aren't treated with the fungicides that normal potatoes are (Organic Nation.tv - Blog - Dirty Dozen: Why to Always Buy Organic*Potatoes), so you don't have to worry about buying organic sweet potatoes, whereas you might want to buy organic with normal potatoes.

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