I know with the economy still struggling and food prices ever rising, someone raised in one of my forums that it is not economical to be a WLS patient. I thought - hmm wait a minute. How is possible not to be frugal and be a WLS patient!?!?!? Obviously we eat less. A lot less!!!! But in all honesty, you could choose to not be frugal and be a WLS patient as easily are you could be a non surgery patient and eating and being non-frugal...right? So how do I live a frugal life in relation to food. Simply put - I shop smart just like I did prior to having an itty bitty tummy, but now I am conscious the quantities I purchase, eat buy/freeze buy dates, and calorie/sugar content. For me I would say that a majority of my grocery bill weekly goes to proteins - there is always cheese of some sort purchased and meat (chicken, fish, ground beef, etc) purchased for the week. I usually purchase greek yogurt or other yogurts, sour creams, cream cheese, milk, and veggies. What I have learned is for me and how I eat with meal planning that I can purchase some items maybe one or two times a year in larger quantities such as quinoa, couscous, peanut butter, and other items that allow me to make a number of recipes. Included in these larger shopping trips would be sugar free syrups, spices, and additives that allow me to transform items that I keep in the house. Prior to surgery I would of bought a lot more of these items on a weekly basis, but since I meal plan and can eat left overs my purchases are much smaller and food last a lot longer!
Tuna fish - $1.08 per package for the air sealed chunk light tuna
This package allows me to eat 3 meals! Yes, 3 meals. This is how: first add to tuna 1 tbsp greek yogurt and 1tsp of mayo with chopped onion and relish. I usually eat a scoop of tuna on a 50 calorie small thin whole wheat roll with 1 piece of mild cheddar cheese. This small sand which will fill my tummy up, provide me with a good amount of protein and is moist enough that allows me to not want to drink while I eat.
When you break down per item cost and look at the meal cost, the meal is essentially less than 2.00 per meal (if that) and the items in my pantry such as bread, mayo, and relish are cents on the meal because I purchase regular sizes, break them down, freeze, or take care of the item.
I share this with you all because I have found that on the whole I can live very frugally and eat on my diet - there are choices to be made and items to be purchased. On a whole, you can choose to buy named brand sugar free items, pre-packaged foods, high end proteins etc and spend alot of money to eat on your diet, but really for me it was about getting the bang for my buck, satisfying my taste buds, and realizing that I can be normal, eat normally, shop normally and be a WLS patient! I love shopping, using coupons, and eating well and it has been a fascinating 10 months in watching my grocery bill go from 600 a month to 250 a month for two people! It has been amazing to learn to cook, read recipes, and find options for myself to eat. I have enjoyed it and learned I can be frugal and lean :-)