Switching to all-natural and organic products is one of the best decisions you can make for your diet during pregnancy. Unfortunately, switching to these products is often viewed as costly, difficult, or simply too much to handle at one time.
If you really are ready to make huge changes in your life as your pregnancy advances, you can take a step in the right direction by switching to these products over time. In this article, we present a strategy for going organic without going crazy—and without breaking the bank as well.
While high-quality foods and sound nutrition are important during pregnancy, avoiding stress is important too. You can implement these changes so that you aren’t feeling stressed or overwhelmed, thus getting the best of both worlds, so to speak, over the next nine months. The key is in taking baby steps toward your goal–because even the smallest step towards a healthy lifestyle is a step in the right direction.
Substitute Whole Foods for Processed Foods
Let’s start with the most basic change you can make: switching from processed foods to whole foods. Rather than eating lunch meat during pregnancy, you could switch to a protein source for lunch that is whole and all-natural. You might opt for a piece of organic grilled chicken, or wild salmon twice a week (it’s high in Omega-3 fatty acids, so it’s great for your developing baby).
For a vegetarian option, a handful of raw nuts or some nut butter are both excellent protein sources. Processed foods such as deli meat simply contain too many preservatives and fillers which can cause troubling side effects, such as too much weight gain, during pregnancy.
Try One New Organic Item per Week
When you do your weekly shopping, try substituting one organic item per trip to the store. The first week, you might elect to buy organic eggs rather than regular eggs. On the next trip, continue buying organic eggs, but add organic butter to your cart. By slowly introducing these changes, you can see the difference buying organic really makes to your weekly budget.
When your budget simply gets too tight to handle any more organic food purchases, then stop. What you are doing is finding your comfort zone. If you went out and purchased all organic and all-natural food products in one week, you might break your budget and decide that you can’t go organic at all. It’s not an all-or-nothing proposition, so find your comfort level and stick with it.
Shop at Your Local Farmer’s Market
You might be surprised at the bargains you can find at your local farmers’ market, especially on organic produce and dairy products. If you attend during the last hour or so of operation, you might find vendors willing to make a bulk sale–or at least slash prices–rather than pack their wares back up to take home.
Shopping at a farmers’ market also offers the benefit of allowing you to shop by season, which is usually cheaper than sticking to certain kinds of produce regardless of the time of year. Going to a farmers’ market is also great entertainment, and allows you to support local farmers. It’s a win-win situation–make sure to try it out.
Look Online for Great Bargains
On the opposite end of the spectrum from farmers’ markets are online shopping sites. You can order almost any kind of organic product online—and usually at a better price than your local grocery store can offer. Many people opt to purchase organic meats online and have them delivered regularly to their front door. It’s worth a try, and can save a lot of money and valuable time.