I've totally done it. I've thought about buying a Costco sized box of KD and living on that until this recession is over. And maybe you have too. For health conscious people, the question is: can you afford to eat well and look after yourself when the economy sucks, and having "spending money" is a thing of the past?
I've written about this previously and it is all the more relevant now, so let me share with you some ideas:
1) Jot down your stores' Customer Appreciation Days, and sign up for their email if they have one.
Simply Health CAP Day: First Wednesday of the Month; Sign up for their email at the bottom of the web page on www.simplyhealthsprucegrove.com
Grove Health CAP DAY: Third Wednesday of the Month; Sign up for their email at the bottom of the webpage on www.grovehealth.ca
2) Become your own kitchen manager
Don't waste food. Spend some time meal planning and creating grocery lists.
Bust out some of your old kitchen appliances like your juicer or food processor, and when you know there are some fruits and veggies on their last leg you can make yourself a healthy juice, sauce or soup with minimal effort. Utilize your deep freeze and slow cooker, and spend more time eating at home. Do your own baking so you have no need to buy overpriced treats. And, empty your mind of the misconception that frozen veggies are less nutritious. Often times, they are flash frozen once they've been harvested and could arguably be MORE nutrient dense then some of our produce that has sat on the shelf for weeks.
Another great idea that needs to be resurrected is meal sharing!
3) Try the simple stuff first
Do you have a sore throat or cough? Try some hot water with organic lemon and ginger. For 3-5$ you may have the best possible remedy before spending your money on supplements.
Consider loose herbs or teas for temporary relief. It's in our nature to think that teas and similar mixtures are not effective but that is far from the truth. In my personal experience, I have found loose herbs and teas to sometimes be MORE effective-and, BONUS many of them can be used topically for relief as well!
Some great examples and reminders of some old-school treatments for short-term support are:
- Peppermint (gas and bloating)
- Ginger tea ( nausea and headaches)
- Chamomile (insomnia and anxiety)
- Fennel tea (gas)
- Licorice (heartburn or cough=do not use if you have high blood pressure)
- Fenugreek (for boosting milk supply=your urine will smell like maple syrup, that is totally normal so don't freak out)
- Lemon Balm (anxiety, insomnia)
- Echinacea or Goldenseal (for cold prevention)
- Horsetail (hair, skin, nails)
- Turmeric powder/Ginger powder (pain)
- Chaga (skin, overall immune support)
- Nettle (diuretic, overall tonic)
- ...and so many more!
- If this is something you're interested in, just chat with your health food associate and we'll give you some options.
4) Check the clearance racks at your store
This is a secret I love sharing. Most of the product on the clearance shelves are not poor quality (I'm speaking for Simply Health and Grove Health); rather they are products that didn't get to spend enough time in the spotlight, or were poorly labelled or marketed for their uses.
For example, I have seen Olive Leaf go on clearance and this blows my mind because it is one of my favourite herbs!
Additionally, most supplements are good at least 6 months past their expiry date, with the exception of food items and probiotics so don't throw everything away or be shy about buying something with a month left if you know you can use it.
5) Some supplement tricks
a) If you're taking Omega-3's or probiotics just for prevention, take a half dose every day or a full dose every second day. If you have human strain probiotics they will attach to the intestinal wall and colonize so one capsule can be effective for a couple of days, and Omega-3's are fat soluble so they will store in the tissues.
b) Look at what products you have at home. So many products have alternate uses that are not listed on the bottle. I'll use Olive Leaf as an example because I'm on a kick. It's great for lowering blood pressure, but it's also anti-viral.
If you've got a cupboard of natural health products that you don't know what to do with, feel free to send me a picture and I will give you some alternate uses so you can get your money's worth out of the mini health food store in your pantry. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
c) Tell the staff you're on a budget. We will do the best we can to hook you up with supplements that can kill as many birds as possible with one stone.
d) Tell the staff all your symptoms, and don't be alarmed when you get asked a boat load of questions. Clear communication is extremely important to ensure you leave with the best supplement for your condition(s). Natural health is about finding the root cause, not treating symptoms. We aren't qualified to diagnose, and we can't run tests, so we are working with limited resources. Let me give you an example:
If you come in and stated "you're tired" you might leave with an energy enhancing supplement for short-term use and maybe greens to correct some mineral deficiencies. And, you may or may not have a modest improvement.
If you came in and said "you're tired, you get migraines, you have muscle pain, you're constipated and you don't sleep well", red flags may go up for us and we may say "wow, you could really use some magnesium". So even though you had multiple symptoms, you leave with one supplement that is going to be drastically more effective at possibly half the price.
The reality that we have to face is this recession will end, but until it does we have to be cautious with our money. What we don't want to be over any time soon is the state of our health. Our goal is to work with our customers by offering solutions that are budget friendly, and some opportunities to save you money with coupons and discount days.
As always if you have any questions, chat with your associate, or email me!