It could be a tough challenge, but an eye-opening one. CNN.com writer/producer Madison Park tried it out recently and reported on it here. She went slightly over budget, thanks to a frozen yogurt splurge at the end of the week. But, overall, she managed the task well.
Here’s a rundown on what she realized after the week was over:
– MyPlate took me much longer to eat, because I had to finish various components.
– It gets easier. Promise.
– Portion control is key.
– Your variables matter.
I like that she included some great tips she received from readers. I’m going to share them here, because I’m nice like that:
– The expensive fruits & veggies are usually those that are out of season. Learning what types of fruits & veggies are in season when you go shopping is an easy way to cut costs. Also, if you find a great price on something fresh or you have grown an abundance, you can always blanch and freeze the extra.
– I spend roughly $50/week for myself and my son and we eat a very healthy, well-balanced diet. It’s possible to not spend a fortune, depending on your diet. We’re not huge meat eaters but I buy extra when it’s on sale. We eat seasonal fruits and veggies, don’t buy a lot of prepackaged food (except things for bag lunches due to school rules), and don’t buy a lot that doesn’t get eaten.
– I have found that it is possible to eat healthy, including fruits and vegetables and stay on a budget. When I go to the farmers market, I can get a big tub of organic spinach for $2. The grocery store sells that same tub for $6. That $2 allows me to have spinach salads all week for lunch. I also watch sales ads and watch for coupons (driscolls.com has berry coupons; Earthbound Farms will mail you coupons if you email them; Dole Pineapple puts out coupons every couple of months, etc). My husband and I eat healthy meals at home for $50/week including fruits, vegetables, fresh fish, and organic dairy products. Trust me, it can be done!
So, do you think you can do the MyPlate Challenge for a week? Let me know if you try it out!
I’ll be taking a break from this blog while I explore the great outdoors for a few days. I’ll be back on Monday. Or Tuesday. Whenever.