Good Nutrition on a Tight Budget? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 04-17-2014, 11:03 PM
 
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I know this question probably comes up a lot... but I've never been interested in it before now, so haven't taken the time to read about it.

 

I've been living with my boyfriend since last summer with little to no income. I have a job, but it is taking inventory and I only get one or two shifts a week, with very little hours. I also sell polymer clay charms in my Etsy shop on the side. I started with a set amount of money, and now that I'm running low I realize that I could have been more thoughtful in my buying habits. I am starting university in the fall, but until then I have to hold out a little longer.

 

Anyway, I've been eating mostly junk food because its generally cheaper for more. I have white rice, white potatoes, white pasta, ramen noodles, etc. along with snacks that my boyfriend buys me on the regular (potato chips, energy drinks, french fries) You know the deal.

I am able to live comfortably eating these foods, but not HEALTHFULLY!

I have gained 6 pounds in the last month or so when I usually stay at a pretty steady weight. Of course I am small in stature and not overweight, so its not noticeable to others. But it is pure fat that I have gained, so I am a tiny blob of squishy flabby chaos. Along with that, I feel like crap physically and emotionally .. depressed, unmotivated, sluggish, bloated... and I have a feeling it has to do with my bad diet. On pay day I will buy some fruits and veggies but they are gone in the next 2-3 days. >.<

 

Basically, I feel like I have to choose between eating healthy but under-eating, or eating junk and feeling satisfied but in exchange for my health.

Health wise, do you think its better to eat healthy nutrient dense food but not consume enough calories for your body -- or eat high calorie, nutrient deficient foods to be satisfied?

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#2 Old 04-18-2014, 01:00 AM
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http://yummyplants.com/all-vegan-recipes/
check this out Veggie Weasle ^^ good luck! smiley.gif
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#3 Old 04-18-2014, 02:23 AM
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Check if the pasta or bread has a whole wheat version, price may be similar.

Buy dried beans and cook, hummus is great and whole wheat pita bread is inexpensive. Homemade hummus or cooked beans is easy, condiments such as hot sauce or Bragg's make for quick seasoning. Serve over rice or alongside grains.

Raisins and bananas are cheap for the calorie around here, raisins are great in oatmeal.

Oatmeal is very inexpensive, any kind will do. Simply pour boiling water on 'old fashioned oats' and they are ready to eat. Raisins and Cinnamon are good additions.

Plant milks and collard greens and kale can help provide Calcium

Nuts and seeds can help provide Zinc. Sunflower and pumpkin are inexpensive here.
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#4 Old 04-18-2014, 07:47 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beanspud View Post

Check if the pasta or bread has a whole wheat version, price may be similar.

Buy dried beans and cook, hummus is great and whole wheat pita bread is inexpensive. Homemade hummus or cooked beans is easy, condiments such as hot sauce or Bragg's make for quick seasoning. Serve over rice or alongside grains.

Raisins and bananas are cheap for the calorie around here, raisins are great in oatmeal.

Oatmeal is very inexpensive, any kind will do. Simply pour boiling water on 'old fashioned oats' and they are ready to eat. Raisins and Cinnamon are good additions.

Plant milks and collard greens and kale can help provide Calcium

Nuts and seeds can help provide Zinc. Sunflower and pumpkin are inexpensive here.

 

Good tips, thank you ^_^ 

 

I have a giant bag of white rice, and a lot of white pasta too. I guess I could give it to my room mate and buy some whole grain versions when I get paid. I always get whole grain bread though, I hate the white kind! Do you know of any potatoes that are better that white ones? But not sweet potatoes, I dont like the taste. :{

 

I have never prepared dried beans before, is it hard? I read a thread recently of people having trouble getting them cooked right.

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#5 Old 04-18-2014, 08:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Veggie Weasel View Post

Good tips, thank you ^_^ 

I have a giant bag of white rice, and a lot of white pasta too. I guess I could give it to my room mate and buy some whole grain versions when I get paid. I always get whole grain bread though, I hate the white kind! Do you know of any potatoes that are better that white ones? But not sweet potatoes, I dont like the taste. :{

I have never prepared dried beans before, is it hard? I read a thread recently of people having trouble getting them cooked right.
There are yams, yucca, and purple potatoes that I have seen in some stores. Yucca is a staple root vegetable in many countries, it takes a little longer to prepare than white potatoes. I think white potatoes are fine, they are usually the kind I get myself.

If in doubt, follow the directions on the back of the packaging. The only way you'll run into trouble is if the beans are old, or you forget you're cooking and they burn. Old beans never seem to cook fully, and taste grainy no matter how long they cook. Soaking overnight is easiest, then cook. Lentils require no soaking time, and can be made into dal and Indian style spreads.
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#6 Old 04-18-2014, 08:31 AM
 
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There are yams, yucca, and purple potatoes that I have seen in some stores. Yucca is a staple root vegetable in many countries, it takes a little longer to prepare than white potatoes. I think white potatoes are fine, they are usually the kind I get myself.

If in doubt, follow the directions on the back of the packaging. The only way you'll run into trouble is if the beans are old, or you forget you're cooking and they burn. Old beans never seem to cook fully, and taste grainy no matter how long they cook. Soaking overnight is easiest, then cook. Lentils require no soaking time, and can be made into dal and Indian style spreads.

 

Ok, thanks! I forgot about lentils, they are yummy! Now I want to make lentil soup.. :}

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#7 Old 04-19-2014, 08:13 PM
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Do you know of any potatoes that are better that white ones? But not sweet potatoes, I dont like the taste. :{
White potatoes are just as nutritious as most other potatoes, they aren't like white bread. I eat a good deal of white potatoes but will mix it up with red potatoes, yukon, sweet, etc.....and they are rather cheap around here. Only $3~$4 for 10 pounds. Seems strange that anybody is making money on them!

Sweet potatoes, unfortunately for you, are probably the most nutritious potato.

One of my favorite quick meals for diner that happens to be cheap is a few roasted potatoes, with some pea soup (I make soups in large batches and freeze...usually only takes 30~40 minutes) and some sort of green vegetable. Only takes me around 10~15 minutes to prepare.
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#8 Old 04-19-2014, 09:21 PM
 
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White potatoes are just as nutritious as most other potatoes, they aren't like white bread. I eat a good deal of white potatoes but will mix it up with red potatoes, yukon, sweet, etc.....and they are rather cheap around here. Only $3~$4 for 10 pounds. Seems strange that anybody is making money on them!

Sweet potatoes, unfortunately for you, are probably the most nutritious potato.

One of my favorite quick meals for diner that happens to be cheap is a few roasted potatoes, with some pea soup (I make soups in large batches and freeze...usually only takes 30~40 minutes) and some sort of green vegetable. Only takes me around 10~15 minutes to prepare.

 

Oh okay that's good, I love white and yellow potatoes ^_^ I see a lot of people demonizing white potatoes on fitness/health pages and stuff. I'm guessing they are more starchy or something?

 

I don't like to eat sweet potatoes plain but they are really good in pureed soup. I have a red lentil, sweet potato and carrot soup recipe that I plan on making soon. Now that you mention it, pea soup is really good too. I will put that on my to-make list! :P

 

I have never frozen batches of soup before, which is kind of stupid of me. One time I made a pretty big batch of soup by accident and I had two or three bowls before it went sour :'( Does freezing soups affect the quality at all? 

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#9 Old 04-19-2014, 09:52 PM
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Oh okay that's good, I love white and yellow potatoes ^_^ I see a lot of people demonizing white potatoes on fitness/health pages and stuff. I'm guessing they are more starchy or something?
I'm not sure why so many people demonize white potatoes......they are nutritious and are similar to other potatoes. But it seems, these days, a lot of cheap and healthful foods get demonized.......perhaps in some attempt to market expensive health food products? Who knows. Here is the nutrient content of a white potato:

http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2550/2

It has a higher nutritional value than many foods people think are healthy. For example walnuts are much less nutritious per calorie.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Veggie Weasel View Post

I have never frozen batches of soup before, which is kind of stupid of me. One time I made a pretty big batch of soup by accident and I had two or three bowls before it went sour :'( Does freezing soups affect the quality at all? 
Freezing doesn't effect the quality that much but I find it useful to make the soup a bit dense to save space and then add water when you reheat it. I'll cook 8~10 servings at a time and they stay in the freezer for mouths. You can also freeze curries, spaghetti sauce, etc. My favorite spaghetti sauce is to make a traditional tomato sauce but add some red lentils and collard greens. Taste great over whole wheat pasta and often I'll make some veggie-balls or if I'm lazy just some canned chickpeas.
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