Sometimes, the hardest part about eating healthy is that it requires you to buy expensive food

By Nicole Ganglani | Lead photo by nrd / Unsplash

When you’re in the grocery to check out healthy food, you might frown upon the price tags. Not only are healthy foods seemingly more expensive but you might also not be sure if they would be worth buying. So with the variety of choices available, we asked two certified nutritionists the best healthy items to splurge on to make it easier for you on your next supermarket run:

Herbs and Spices

According to Timothy Jeffe Ting, head and sports nutritionist of Timnutrition Clinic and Consultancy, if you are on a balanced diet and are sustaining this by preparing your own meals, herbs and spices are the best splurges because not only do they enhance flavors but they also increase your ability to enjoy meals with less added calories and fat. Ting suggests to start with oregano and basil to add a classic Italian taste to your dishes.

Whole Fruits and Frozen Vegetables

Fia Batua, a registered nutritionist-dietitian and elite fitness trainer, recommends spending on whole fruits and vegetables especially since they contain good amounts of fiber, vitamins, and minerals as well as help with hydration. Whole fruits and frozen vegetables are comprised of natural sugars, which is better than sugar found in other sweet treats.

Oil for Dressing and Cooking

Oil in general is known to have a lot of pure fat and is composed of unhealthy nutrients that damages the heart. While there are a bunch of choices in the grocery, the best ones to splurge on are those that are less processed. Less processed oil is suggested when it comes to searing, sautéing, and frying meals because they contain good fats and are beneficial in reducing heart disease. Ting says that the best choices are olive, safflower, and rapeseed oils.

Protein Bars

When it comes to splurging on protein bars, it’s important to check on its carbohydrates, protein, and fat content. Splurge on protein bars that contain less total calories, ideally lower than 300 kcal, has 20 and 24 grams of protein, and those that do not have sugar alternatives like syrup and invert sugar. Ting suggests that a good protein bar to splurge on specifically are MusclePharm Combat bars while Batua recommends Healthy Options as a place to get quality protein bars.

Plain Greek Yogurt

A nutrient-packed snack that is high in protein with less calories, Greek yogurt can be consumed for as much as 12 to 17 grams per serving depending on the brand. Since it’s protein-rich, it helps you feel full longer, preventing you from eating junk throughout the day. Not only is it a great source of protein but it also boosts metabolism, restores healthy bacterial balance, and contains calcium. It’s also beneficial for those who are lactose intolerant.

Nuts

If you’re nuts about nuts, it’s a good idea to spend on them at the grocery. Peanuts, cashew, almonds, and pistachios are high in calories and are the recommended sources of good fat. Batua suggests eating one to two tablespoons of nuts every day.