If food prices go up because of Brexit, there is a risk that diets could get worse. It’s a fact that the diets of people in lower economic brackets tend to be worse, though that could be down to a lack of education. But you can eat healthily on a budget, despite the mantra we hear that it’s harder to do so. You just have to think more carefully about what you’re eating, and plan everything, and to make sure that you’re using up all your ingredients, and don’t veer off your shopping list by buying items you don’t need.
You can have porridge for breakfast, which is good for cholesterol, and then make your own packed lunch – something like tortilla wraps or pita bread, with canned tuna and sweetcorn, and then a simple dinner such as rice or pasta-based dishes. Or a sweet baked potato, roasted and chopped up with spring onion and a fried egg on top, which is delicious and doesn’t cost a fortune.
Also, make the most of frozen and canned food, because it’s more nutritious than people think, and they’re generally better value than fresh. Another cost-saver is to opt for the supermarkets’ own brands.
You can get a supermarket wholemeal loaf for 50p, and I know everyone thinks about sourdough bread made by an independent bakery, but at the end of the day, that supermarket loaf is half the price of a branded loaf, just supermarket-branded pasta compared to named brands from Italy, which is way better value. Despite the fact people get funny about sliced bread, it still has a level of carbohydrates, protein and vitamins. I’d prefer people ate wholemeal bread because it’s got more fibre, but white bread is not a completely nutritional disaster, as white bread-making flour in Britain has been fortified with vitamins since the Second World War, to bring it up to levels that would allow us to meet our nutritional requirements within the rations people were given.
Be aware too of buying things on offer, and multi-packs. Look at the relative cost per hundred grams, and drill down and compare things quite carefully. You can sprout beans, which can be used in stir fries, and grow your own herbs, like parsley or chives. It sounds a bit The Good Life, but it’s easy to do even if you don’t have a garden or balcony, by using pots on the windowsill. All this can make a big difference over time.