If you know me or have followed me for any length of time then you know about the apple of my eye, my baby boy, the best pup on the planet, Preacher. October 18th of this year will mark the 7-year anniversary of the day I brought my baby boy home and he is still as big of a baby as he ever was.
Now, you might be thinking to yourself, ‘what the hell does this guy’s dog have to do with groceries and inflation?”
That is a valid question.
Our first year together, a bag of Preach’s food would cost me $63. That was in 2016. Last week I had to go and buy him a new bag of food and it cost me…..$84! That is a 33% increase in price over a seven-year span for you math wizards out there.
Moral of the story: SH*T is getting expensive! Inflation is here and it’s lingering like a party guest that just can’t get the hint that you want to go to bed.
However, I’m sure I didn’t need to tell you that. We are all feeling the effects of it right now – especially when we grocery shop. I keep a monthly budget (and you should too! Know where your money is going! But that’s a talk for another day…I digress), and I have seen the uptick in my grocery store spending. In fact, it easily became my biggest expense for the month, and I live alone! I am not responsible for feeding a family during these times.
But have no fear! Because the Inflation-Proof Grocery List is here. I am going to lay out for you the game plan that I have implemented for myself over the last 3 months that has helped ‘stop the bleeding’ of my wallet when it comes to my monthly grocery store totals and has actually helped me improve my health.
Now, the first thing I must mention is that there is sacrifice. Obviously, we cannot go and buy all the same things we did a year ago and expect it to be the same price just because I wrote a blog about it. The Inflation-Proof Grocery List doesn't change the fact that inflation is at an all time high. It is the pivot we can make in our shopping to accommodate for it the best we can.
This list is basically the essentials we need to get us through this time period of grotesque grocery prices. This doesn’t mean that you can never buy certain things – maybe it just means you can’t buy them as often. I will show you some practices I’ve implemented so I can still enjoy all the things I want.
The last thing I want to mention before I dive into the actual list, is the list itself. For a lot of you, this list might look totally foreign and odd because you just don’t know how to shop. For some of you, this might be the first time seeing what the grocery cart looks like of someone who prioritizes their health. If that is a direction you want to go in, then great! This list is a great place to start giving you some directions as to what you should start bringing into your home. If you think you are a person that prioritizes their health and this list still looks crazy to you, then there is a strong possibility that you might have been given some wrong information along the way. I cannot tell you how many times I have had conversations with people who thought they were doing the right things and making the right choices only to be punched in the mouth with the truth later that they were given misinformation – because there is a lot of it out there these days!
So, let’s dive in!
The Regulars: Eggs, Ground Beef, Ground Turkey, Chicken Thighs, Drumsticks
The Delicacies: Bison, Salmon, Steak, Cod
The regulars are what should be making up most of your meals most of the time. All these things are fairly inexpensive – even the healthier alternatives of them such as Grass-Fed ground beef and Free-Range chicken legs and thighs (although these are not a requirement.) The other benefit of these foods is their versatility. You can cook and prepare them many ways in many different types of recipes.
The delicacies are things that we won’t be buying every single week but something we want to try and get into the rotation sometime within the month. These things are a little bit pricier but are very good for you and are delicious. Also, while the healthier alternatives weren’t a must with the foods mentioned before, I do strongly urge you to only eat wild caught fish/seafood. This is part of the reason we find it on the delicacies list. It is more expensive - but farm raised fish is an abomination and I would never tell anyone to eat it.
The Regulars: White Rice, Regular Potatoes, Apples, Bananas
The Delicacies: Sweet Potatoes, Quinoa, Berries, Grapes, Sprouted Grain Breads, Oats
White rice gets a lot of hate mail these days. But I am team white rice over brown rice all day and have been for many years. I cannot tell you the last time I bought brown rice at a grocery store. White rice is a clean burning carbohydrate and very easy for the body to digest and is a staple food in many cultures around the world that find themselves to have much better obesity numbers than we do here in the US - where we want to demonize it. Here’s the thing – we don’t have a white rice problem, we have a ‘I don’t want to move around and be active problem.’
If you are reading my blog, then chances are you make your health a priority in your life – which means you probably exercise regularly. If that’s the case, then white rice is a great carbohydrate option to mix into your rotation.
All these same things can pretty much be said for potatoes as well. There is nothing wrong with plain old-fashioned white potatoes. They are actually loaded with vitamins and minerals.
Carbohydrates are not the enemy! Unearned carbohydrates are. Carbs are our bodies readily available energy. If you are sitting around all day not doing jack squat – then you don’t need to consume a lot of carbs because you are not burning energy. Eat your carbs when you’ve created the need for them. Your body will better utilize and assimilate them AND you won’t consume them as fast and as often resulting in not needing to go to the store to buy more – CHA CHING!
There are two things on our delicacies list here that I make exceptions for often – that is berries and oats. Berries are a superfood and I try to consume them in some way, shape or form, daily. Fresh is always the most optimal way to consume them but a work-around you can use if you want to incorporate them into your routine would be to purchase flash frozen berries. You typically buy a lot more at once when you do this but because they are frozen, they will last a lot longer and are great to add to smoothies.
Oats are phenomenal for cardiovascular health and are an all-star when it comes to pre-workout fuels – at least for me. On some occasions oats can be tough for some people to digest but this is not the norm. Because of my job and the way I live my life, I am extremely active and train often. Thus, oats are a big fuel source for me. I am making an iteration of a breakfast bowl 5-6 days per week almost every week. If you aren’t sure what the breakfast bowl is, check out me making one here…you’re welcome.
The Regulars: Raw Mixed Nuts, Avocados, Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Sardines, Butter
The Delicacies: Nut Butters, Avocado Oil
Luckily for us and our wallets, fat is not something we really have to go out of our way to consume because it is abundant in other foods. However, there are certain types of fat we want to make sure we are consuming, and this is mostly what comprises our list.
Nuts are a great grab and go snack food that won’t set you back, in your health or your finances. However, because nuts have a longer shelf life, I always urge to buy them in bulk whenever possible to further increase the financial savings.
Olive Oil is one of the healthiest fats we can consume and is great to add to recipes and salads, however, it is not a great cooking oil. Olive oil breaks down and can become rancid when it’s exposed to high heat. So, if you are looking for an oil to cook with, leave it on the shelf and instead grab the coconut oil. You can buy refined or unrefined if you don’t want the strong coconut taste, but coconut oil is a great choice to use when cooking and has even been shown to activate our brown fat tissue when consumed. Brown fat is a fat within our bodies that help us….BURN FAT. I know its crazy. The human body is something else.
Nut butters are a delicacy because more often than not, the nut butters we would want to consume (ones that don’t have a ton of garbage oils added to them) are typically pretty expensive for the amounts you get. Avocado oil is another great oil to cook with and is loaded with healthy fats, but unfortunately is double the price of olive oil which is just as if not healthier. However, unless you are cooking a ton and go through oils like crazy, its not a bad idea to get a bottle of each and rotate through them on a regular basis when preparing your meals. That way they each last for a while and you aren’t spending $100 a month on cooking oils.
The last thing I want to point out on this list is sardines. Earlier we found Salmon on our delicacy list because wild caught salmon is quite expensive. However, we want to try to rotate it in because the fats we get from salmon are extremely beneficial for our cardiovascular health as well as our brains. This is where we can plug in sardines to act as a back up of sorts. Are they as good as wild caught salmon and do we want to consume them as often? No. However, to plug in here and there when needed is great! They are inexpensive and share a lot of the same heart and brain healthy fats. One caveat to sardines is they are LOADED with salt. Therefore, if you are on any salt restrictive diet for blood pressure concerns, you might want to steer away from them.
I know what you’re thinking, where are the veggies?!? Veggies are typically not crazy expensive. When you buy organic, they will increase in price, however, that is not a necessity. Buying organic is great if you can afford to do so, but I would not worry about it if you can’t. Eating a diet of mainly whole foods, whether organic or not, is going to put you in a great position to be the healthiest version of yourself. I get the bulk of my green veggies from a big raw salad everyday comprised of baby spinach, romaine lettuce, carrots, cucumbers, onions and cherry tomatoes. Making a big bowl of this at the beginning of the week that lasts all week is a cheap and effective way to get your veggie needs.
That is the other thing…as you can see, this grocery list is mostly all whole foods! You’d be shocked how low your grocery bill is when you don’t start wandering down all the isles of the grocery store! Processed junk is consumed in large amounts because it’s void of nutrition and detrimental to your health. That means you buy a lot of it, eat a lot of it, and it serves you no good. A double-edged sword we want no part of.
Now this is not 100% of my grocery list. There are things I buy and consume on a semi-regular basis like dark chocolate, chicken sausage, green tea, etc. But as I mentioned before, I will take turns cycling these types of things in and out of my weekly schedule. If one week I decide to buy dark chocolate to have for an after dinner sweet, then I will forego chicken sausage to have as a side with my breakfast meals that week. Making rotations like this will save you money and help you plan on putting together a well-rounded nutrition regiment. It also helps you dial in your diet! Because we aren’t buying everything we want all the time, it is very possible that our daily caloric intake drops by a couple hundred calories. You just may lose those few pounds you’ve been trying to drop.
If you need guidance as to how to construct a diet that take all of this into account, check out the eBook I wrote that will cover EVERYTHING you need to know about nutrition, caloric intake and food choice, here:
The last thing I would advise is looking into a membership of sorts at Costco, Sams Club or even an online market like Thrive or Melaleuca. If you want the hook up at Melaleuca, hit up my girl Kristen Jones at email@example.com and she will make sure you're taken care of.
Membership is an annual cost but depending on your shopping habits you can still come out way ahead with savings. Creating a budget for the grocery store each month is a very effective way to help bring all this together. It may take 2-3 months of tracking your spending to pick a good average number to use, but having that hard line to know not to cross really helps you prioritize what’s important when you go to the grocery store.
As with anything, success in this all comes down to having a plan, adhering to the plan, and committing to the plan long term. If you do that then you will definitely beef up your wallet, and lean out that waistline.
Let's do it,