Going Paleo Without Going Broke


Take a look at the above picture...

That's a whole lot of fruits and veggies right?

Specifically, it's 2 Florida avocados, 1 head of red cabbage, 1 coconut, 1 rutabaga, 2 sweet peppers, 2 beefsteak tomatoes, 1 pint portobello mushrooms, 1 bunch radishes, 1 head mustard greens, 1lb sugar snap peas, 1 head green leaf lettuce, 1 pineapple, 10 grapefruit, and 10 honeybell oranges.

Purchasing this much produce at one of my local Whole Foods or Publix grocery stores could run up a $50+ tab, but I didn't pay $50.  I didn't even pay $40, $30, or $25.

In fact, I paid $20 for the entire haul!

The secret to this stash is a little no name, no advertising, off-the-beaten-path fruit stand that I happened upon while my wife and I were on our way home from the beach.

One of the biggest obstacles most people face when making the switch from a diet predominantly made up of packaged/processed foods to a whole-food diet is the cost.  It doesn't have to be that way though.  There are thousands of local fruit, vegetable, and meat retailers in this great country.

Buying directly from farmers (or perhaps being farmers themselves), these local, independent outlets have much lower overhead which allows them to make their margins without taking you to the cleaners.  And, while fruit stands and farmer's markets are great, odd hours and unpredictable weather makes them hit-and-miss opportunities to load up on groceries.

My suggestion is to search the terms like "fruit market" and "meat market" along with your town or city to find options near you.  Then, go check them out, look for fresh produce (rotten, buggy stuff is inevitable, but it should be few and far between) and plenty of other customers (faster turnover of food).  

It might take some time to find your own diamond-in-the-rough, but the results will be worth their weight in produce.


Resources:

National Directory of Farmer's Markets and Fruit Stands - http://www.fruitstands.com/

National Directory of Coop's - http://www.coopdirectory.org/
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About Tony Fed

Tony is the host of the Paleo Magazine Radio podcast, author of "Paleo Grilling: A Modern Caveman's Guide to Cooking with Fire", and Cofounder of Powerful PT, an innovative information resource for Fitness Professionals. He has appeared on numerous local and national television and radio broadcasts and regularly hosts healthy cooking workshops and informational lectures. He is also a full-time Personal Trainer and Wellness Consultant who lives in Jacksonville Florida with his wife Jamie.
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2 comments:

  1. Great in California but how do we survive the winter in the North East?

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  2. For people who don't have the option of buying fresh produce all year round (like those in California or my state of Florida) a little more planning and creativity is required.

    Two valid options exist, however, that will allow you to take advantage of the growing season, namely, canning and the construction of a root cellar.

    Whether you start your own garden or buy in bulk from farmer's markets and fruit stands storing root vegetables and canning everything else will allow you to enjoy cheap produce and even meats well into the winter.

    For more info, check out these links:

    http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/building-root-cellar

    http://nchfp.uga.edu/publications/publications_usda.html

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