Maintaining A Heart-Healthy Diet Is So Expensive. How Can I Eat Healthy Without Increasing Food Costs?

Dr. Lichtenstein answers the question: 'How Can I Eat Healthy For Less Money?'

ByABC News
December 23, 2008, 5:52 PM

— -- Question: I Want To Maintain A Heart-Healthy Diet, But It Is So Expensive. How Can I Eat Healthy Without Increasing Food Costs?

Answer: Well, there are a lot of different ways to maintain a heart healthy diet without increasing food cost. And it depends on the category of food. So for example, with fruits and vegetables, you want to buy those that are in season. Frequently there are specials in the supermarket, so really take advantage of that. In addition to which, a lot of the frozen vegetables and to a certain extent, fruit snacks, tend to be more affordable than the fresh counterpart. They're very high quality, they're nutritionally equivalent, or actually a little bit better, because they're processed at the point right after they're picked. And there tends to be less waste.

As far as dairy products go, we're fortunate that the reduced fat and non-fat dairy products are priced comparably to that of their full-fat counterparts. And as far as whole grains go, a lot of the whole grain breads or bagels or English muffins are, again, now priced comparably to their more refined counterparts.

So I think it's a -- shopping smart by shopping seasonally, taking advantage of specials, and then really picking and choosing and doing a little bit of price comparison initially.