Grocery Savings

BY MATILDA CHARLES

Many of us on a fixed income have problems affording groceries. The National Institute on Aging has some helpful tips on how to save on your bill.

  • Read the weekly sales flyers and try to plan your menu around what’s featured. Pick up a few extras, but only if they are sale items you’d normally buy or will use before the expiration date.
  • Clip coupons and use them. Try store brands — it might surprise you that they’re comparable to name brands. l Reconsider whether to buy convenience foods. Instant hot cereals, rice, entrees and soups will cost you more.
  • Divide bulk purchases with a neighbor, and both of you can save money. If chicken is on sale and you both take half, you’ll have enough for a few meals and can freeze the rest. You can do the same with anything that comes in large packages or that contains more than you’ll eat before it expires.
  • Keep an eye on unit pricing. Bigger isn’t always cheaper.
  • Shop for foods that are nutrient dense: seafood and lean meats, vegetables, fruit and whole grains. Spend your money there before you buy snack foods.
  • Consider free or low-cost meals. Senior centers often host a monthly luncheon for a low price. If you qualify for Meals on Wheels, those can go a long way to stretching your food budget.

If you qualify for the Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program, you’ll have access to coupons that can be used at farmers’ markets for fresh fruits, vegetables and honey. Call the Eldercare Locator at 1-800- 677-1116 for help in finding services in your area.

(c) 2015 King Features Synd., Inc.