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Health library

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Reviewed 12/2/2020

Healthy shopping on a budget


Buy large containers of yogurt and milk instead of individual servings.

Switch from whole milk to skim.

Scan cheese labels, and buy the product with the lowest price per ounce in a size that can be used before spoiling.

Add your own fruit to yogurt, rather than buying packaged options.


Opt for store brands, not name brands.

Look for day-old bread.


Choose in-season fruits and vegetables.

Buy loose greens, not packaged mixes.

Buy only what you'll use.

Check for mold and bruises before you buy.

Chips and cookies:

Give this section a pass. Foods here are often expensive and loaded with sugar and salt.

Dry goods:

Choose store brands, not name brands.

Choose regular rice and oatmeal instead of instant.

Try dried beans and peas instead of pricier meat and fish.

Look at high and low shelves—expensive items are at eye level.


Buy the value pack and freeze the extra.

Choose chuck or bottom round roast, not sirloin.

Buy whole chickens rather than chicken parts.

Look for deals:

Scan the store's weekly ad or download a coupon app for your phone.

Sources: National Institutes of Health; U.S. Department of Agriculture

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