Hi everyone, I’m Abby Langer, and I’m a Registered Dietitian at Abby Langer Nutrition in Toronto, Canada. I spend my days talking and writing about food, and I get a lot of questions about organics and how to integrate them into your diet. Many of my clients want to eat more organic food, but they feel as though they just can’t afford organic options. I want to show you how to make organic more affordable with these five great tips!
- Search for Sales. Using the Flipp app is the number one way I can source the best price on food! I seriously can’t keep track of paper flyers, but searching ‘organic carrots’ on my app? Simple.
- Eat Less Meat. Organic meat tends to be a lot more expensive than plant-based protein sources! Organic tofu, beans, and lentils deliver tons of protein and fiber while being among the least expensive protein sources - organic and non-organic - available. Buying organic meat in bulk is also a good way to save some money. Remember though, that just because something is grass-fed or local doesn’t mean it’s certified organic. If you’re looking for organic meat or any other organic food outside of a supermarket, the farmer or producer should be able to show you their organic certification.
- Know What To Buy Organic - And What Can Wait. The Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen can help ease you into organic eating by showing you the foods that are the highest in pesticides (and which ones are lowest). Instead of buying everything organic, it’s far more budget-friendly to swap out your conventional produce for those on the Dirty Dozen list. Check out the Clean Fifteen to see which items are the cleanest, too!
- Grow Your Own Food. This recommendation really depends on where you live (and if you have a green thumb). If you have the space, consider starting a garden to grow some of your fruits and vegetables! Not only will your food be fresher, but you can control how much and which pesticides, if any, you use. Even in colder climates, using the short summer and fall to grow your produce, and then freezing or canning it, can be really cost-effective.
- Buy In Bulk. When you find a great buy on organic produce, purchase a lot and then freeze or can it for use later on. In strawberry season, for example, there are plenty of sales on organic strawberries. I buy boxes and boxes of them, and then I wash, stem, and freeze them whole for use through our long, cold Canadian winter. The same goes for corn on the cob (I cut the kernels off first!), and broccoli, among others.
Going organic doesn’t mean busting your budget! Take it one day at a time, and remember my tips to save money.