(NAPSA) - Low-carb diets are all the rage, with many people sharing stories of successful weight loss and healthier lives.
According to a recent Opinion Dynamics Corp. poll, 26 million Americans are on a hard-core, low-carb diet and 70 million more limit their carb intake without formally dieting. Recent research found that three out of five low-carb eaters say that they plan to limit carb intake for life.
With its emphasis on lean meats, fish, fruit and vegetables, low-carb diets can cost $85 to $100 per week for one person. Multiply this by additional family members and maintaining a low-carb lifestyle can be expensive. Fortunately, there are ways families can save money. BJ's Wholesale Club offers some tips to help balance your weight and your wallet:
Consider shopping at a wholesale club for up to 30 percent savings on groceries. They offer a wide selection of name-brand foods including U.S.D.A. (United States Department of Agriculture) Choice meats, poultry, fish, fruits, vegetables, beverages and pre-packaged low-carb products at a significant discount.
In addition to consuming lean meat, shop for a variety of more affordable protein sources including chicken, pork, canned tuna and eggs as well as heart healthy alternatives such as chicken sausage or turkey bacon.
Buy multipacks (two or three items per) or buy bulk sizes to minimize your cost per unit. This goes for vegetables, too (such as peppers and broccoli heads), when snacking on them means you finish them up quickly.
Although fresh produce is an important part of any healthy diet, frozen vegetables and fruit are an affordable, high quality alternative.
With regard to food safety and convenience, BJ's offers the following suggestions:
Purchase a vacuum sealer to optimize and preserve food's freshness during storage or stock up on resealable storage bags, plastic wrap and aluminum foil.
To ensure freshness at home, refrigerate meat within two hours of purchase. Place meat on a plate on the bottom shelf of your refrigerator so that juices won't drip onto other food. Use poultry, ground meat or seafood within one to two days and beef steaks or roasts within three to four days.
Think about available space in your refrigerator, freezer and pantry and buy quantities of food that can be accommodated.