When I started the PCOS diet the first time around (toward the beginning of this year) our grocery bill suddenly skyrocketed. It literally almost doubled. I eventually learned to rein it in a bit. I learned what to buy and what to avoid, how much to buy, how often to shop, etc. At some point, I really hit my stride and our grocery bill began to deflate slowly until it was back into its normal range. But it took a long time to get the hang of things.
This time around, I am remembering the little PCOS shopping tips I learned last time, and so far, our grocery shopping experiences have been far less damaging to our checking account! That being said, we’ve only gotten one shopping day under our belts so far!
My hope is that these little shopping tips will save you the money, time, and pain that I wasted when we first changed our eating habits at our house.
- Come up with a weekly budget and commit to sticking to it no matter what.
- Only shop once a week, and do not make exceptions to this rule. This will save you so much money!
- Don’t shop just because it’s your weekly shopping day. If Saturday is your shopping day, but you still have plenty of food by the time Saturday rolls around, DON’T GO SHOPPING. Wait until you’ve used everything you have and then go to the store. You may find that this happens a lot at first, but eventually you will be able to get on a consistent weekly schedule. This will happen as you learn to gauge how much and what kinds of foods you need each week. I had a tendency to over-buy at first. I bought so much food that by the time my weekly shopping day rolled around, we still had plenty of food. The problem was that I went shopping anyway. Learn from my mistake, and DON’T DO IT! It leads to wasted food, wasted money, and wasted time.
- Don’t buy something just because it’s healthy. If frozen asparagus is on sale for buy one, get one free, and you buy 6 bags but never eat them, you’ve wasted money. Only buy the types of foods and the amounts of food that you will actually eat.
- Don’t buy something just because it’s on sale. Browse grocery ads in advance if you like to shop sales. Factor the sale items you actually need into your budget, and add them to your grocery list.
- Or, if you are a sucker for the sales and know you might make an impromptu purchase, be aware of that and leave some wiggle room in your grocery budget for sale items that you can stock up on (items like nut butters, oatmeal… non-perishables.) But again, only buy things you know you will eventually eat. (And this may not be a realistic option for anyone on a really tight budget.)
- If having coupons tempts you to buy certain items even though you don’t actually need them, then TOSS THE COUPONS! Never keep coupons for junk food or highly processed foods. You do not need them and seeing the coupon over and over again will only temp you.
- Create a meal plan before you head to the grocery store. Make sure all the items you need for the meals on your plan are included in your shopping list. Planning ahead makes all the difference. It helps ensure that you buy what you need in order to eat well during the week. If you are up for the extra work, you may plan your meals around your grocery store’s sales ad.
- Do not deviate from your shopping list. This helps ensure that you have what you need, but that you DO NOT have extra things that you don’t really need. It also helps ensure that you do not overspend. The exception to this rule would be if you purposefully leave some wiggle room in your budget from “incidental.” We do this occasionally.
- For the most part, you can skip the inner aisles of your local grocery store and stick to the perimeter. This saves time, money, and your healthy diet!
I am a grocery shopping novice compared to many, and I’m still learning as I go. If you use any tips and tricks to keep your grocery spending in check while eating healthily, I would love to hear your suggestions!
In other news:
Our ultrasound is tomorrow! It’s our first one since the embryo transfer, and we are praying hard for a heartbeat or two. (Iam praying hard for TWO!) My mom is coming down to go to the appointment with us. My parents have been a really big part of the IVF process. They have helped give me shots, my mom came to visit and took care of me non-stop when I was so hyper-stimulated, they have been in prayer for us constantly, and have helped financially. Andrew and I would not have had the embryos biopsied had it not been for my mom; she’s the one who pushed us to do it. Of the 17 embryos that were biopsied, only 4 were normal. If we’d gone through with the transfer NOT knowing which embryos were normal, chances are we would have transferred abnormal embryos that would not have implanted. I say all of that to say that my parents have been a huge help in every way imaginable over the past few months. I cannot imagine my life without them, and I am so excited to have children who will get the privilege of knowing their grandparents and being loved by them. And it just feels like my mom should be there tomorrow.
Speaking of tomorrow:
Please come back tomorrow… I am really excited about tomorrow’s post. But be prepared: It’s a long one!!! (: