Eating Organic is Expensive (Day 35)!

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In my quest to better my health, I’ve had to make a few lifestyle changes. Outside of: reducing stress, sleeping earlier, getting more sleep, regular fresh air and exercise, the one thing I’ve been concentrating the most on is fixing my diet.

Changing eating habits can be easier said than done… Prior to my leave of absence, I was consuming the way most working professionals do: afternoon coffee breaks (sometimes more than one), dining out regularly, opting for taste and convenience above all else, and just generally not caring all that much.

These days, I’ve really clamped down on my diet and eliminated most toxins:

  • No refined products.
  • No dairy (except for probiotic yogurt).
  • No gluten (no bread, no wheat, etc.).
  • No added sugars or artificial sweeteners.
  • No alcohol, stimulants, or caffeine.
  • No GMOs, pesticides, or any other chemicals.

I even started to introduce some organic meats and vegetables to my diet… And now I know why they call the Whole Foods store “whole paycheck”.

It’s not cheap eating organic… But I’m going to try for awhile and see if it makes a noticeable difference. If anything, it will put my mind at ease and that’s a victory in itself… These days, I’m pretty much second guessing everything that goes into my body.

Anyway, for fun, here’s how my latest grocery bill at Costco tallied up:

Bag of red peppers $5.79
Organic greens $4.69
Organic chicken thighs 3.32 lbs $16.57
Wild Alaskan salmon 3 lbs $29.99
Wild Alaskan cod 2 lbs $14.99

Total bill with tax: $72.03

Yikes, that’s not cheap…

Here’s a picture of a “boring” typical meal for me these days:

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Deliciously bland!

Nothing fancy going on here… I cook the meat with: ginger, garlic, green onions, and some sea salt and pepper. All served over brown rice. Washed down with a glass of warm water.

Man, I miss my pizza and coffee! Well, actually not really… Once you start “eating right”, over time it becomes a lot easier to shun junk food. It’s sort of like exercising and investing and all that other good stuff in life.

But it makes me feel better… I’m putting good fuel in my body and hopefully reducing inflammation in the process, which is the cause of many diseases.

I’m also taking supplements (multi-vitamins, Vitamin D, Vitamin C, probiotics), coconut oil, apple cider vinegar, etc.

It’s a slow process, but I’ve got a lot of repairing to do… Until next time…

 

Stay healthy everyone! 🙂

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FI FighterFIHopefulStefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful LifeJakeMrs. Frugalwoods Recent comment authors
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Roadmap2Retire
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That food bill sounds about right 🙂 I am always shocked when I hear that ppl spend $200 a month in food bills. We go thru that in a week. My wife and I mostly eaten organic, gluten free, paleo diet and we feel great. Every now and then we cheat a bit, esp when we eat out and can actually tell the difference in the subpar ingredients used – which makes us a couple of food snobs, i suppose 🙂 Im glad to hear that you are taking action and approaching it right. Food and nutrition is the basis… Read more »

Max
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Max

I can sometimes find organic products at ethnic supermarkets/bodegas as well as the dollar stores here have all sorts of crazy things…

glad to see you eating better.

Midwestern Landlord
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Midwestern Landlord

Coffee would be hard for me to give up. Actually, some studies show that coffee has beneficial aspects. I tend to think that moderation is generally the key. We live in a society where processed foods are so prevalent. That is a hard habit to break and one that I need to do a better job on. With the time off, you are probably getting a little feel for how FI is. It is nice not having to deal with office activities and the corresponding stress (if even only for a short period of time). I think it’s cool that… Read more »

No Nonsense Landlord
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I am not sure that organic is worth it, compared to the same food at a regular grocery store. Often, Organic is loosely defined and the crops are raised just like the rest. Maybe at a farmer market, where it is a small grower, it may be better.

To keep bugs out, and weeds out, and get good yields, farmers use pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizer. Even the organic folks…

Jake
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Jake

This is incorrect. There is a strict criteria put together by the USDA that will qualify a product as “USDA Organic” at two levels of either “100% Organic” or just “Organic” (where 95% of the ingredients are Organic). So in the US and most developed countries there is a clear distinction that separates an organic product from a non-organic product and pesticides and synthetic fertilizers are prohibited from these products. Now, as far as the health benefits, many studies have shown that there is no difference in nutritional value between organic and non-organic foods but there are larger environmental and… Read more »

Mark
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Mark

When papa bear speaks the cubs should listen.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/toll-brothers-profit-nearly-doubles-as-demand-improves-1424778344

If you jumped on board the luxury liner with me a few weeks ago when I was touting home builder stocks on this forum your enjoying a nice 15% increase in your portfolio.

My favorite line:

“Climb the ladder to success escalator style” – notorious big

Reepekg
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Reepekg

Good luck with the new diet. I’ve found that I don’t notice that I “feel better” with the increase of vegetable consumption and other healthy things… it is that I can really tell I feel terrible when I lapse into eating unhealthy food again, so there must be some benefit.

Mary
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Mary

I would recommend finding a CSA in your area since you know it’ll be locally grown and sometimes organic. It’s a lot fresher than the pre-packaged organic stuff. I’m sketchy about organic stuff at farmers market since I have relatives who sell produce at the market and majority of the time, they and others get their stuff from a distributor. I was once a member for Full Belly Farms CSA but stopped since my family grew.

Mrs. Frugalwoods
Guest

That is a super healthy diet! I’m impressed! Oh food bills… we have the same issue since we buy mostly organic produce. But, one way we’ve really cut them down is by eliminating most meat. We do still eat the occasional salmon (from Costco), but for the most part we rely on other protein sources. It was an adjustment in our eating habits, but over time we’ve come to really like it. And the savings are phenomenal!

Good luck to you and keep fighting the good (food) fight :)!

Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life
Guest

Try incorporating more veggie meals. Cutting back on those meat and fish costs will save you a ton. Beans are super cheap too 🙂

FIHopeful
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FIHopeful

Yes, I agree with Stefanie… meat is the thing that will increase your food bill the most. A while ago, I switched over to a mostly vegetable/fruit/nuts eating regime and it did wonders for my energy and general health. A good rule of thumb is, if you’re eating more meat per meal than can fit in the palm of one hand, it’s probably too much. I don’t really buy much meat anymore… I usually eat out once or twice a week now, and that’s where I get my overdose of protein. On other days, I just have a healthy salad… Read more »

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