Allergies—as more and more people are being diagnosed with food allergies and sensitivities, we are learning the importance of reading labels and eating clean food. Also included in this list are special diets for people with autism, asthma, and ADHD, as doctors often recommend a gluten free and casein free diet. Here are some tips to save money with food allergies.
· Learn what foods you can eat and learn new recipes for using those foods
· Cook in bulk—double recipes so that you have foods you and your family can eat on hand in the freezer
· Invest in a co-op membership to Three Rivers Market or Frontier Food Co-op so that you can purchase foods by the case
· Buy supplies and foods on line where you might be able to get a bulk discount.
· Ask your local grocer to begin carrying foods that are approved for the allergy you have.
· Shop on the perimeter of the grocery store where less processed foods are.
· Invest in a grain mill if you find that you are often using alternative flours. Though expensive initially, it will save money with time.
· Become part of a local or on-line support group to learn more about products and discounts that might be available.
Diabetes—a diagnosis of Diabetes Type 2 is on the rise in America. Foods that cater to those with diabetes are often very expensive.
· Sign up for newsletters and e-newsletters as they often contain coupons.
· Shop on the perimeter of the grocery with a focus on whole grain foods and vegetables. Uncooked vegetables usually spike the insulin level less than cooked. Frozen vegetables can often be a good bargain as well.
· Be mindful of big meals. Eating sensibly is cheap and healthy.
· Clip coupons for monitors and supplies. Speak with your pharmacist about what discounts might be available.
· Since proteins are usually preferred for people with diabetes as opposed to carbohydrates, try making eggs or beans your main source of protein through the meal to save money.
· If you or a friend/family member fishes or hunts, game meat and fish are good low calorie sources of protein. They are often much less expensive than shopping at the grocery. Contact a game processor to see if any meat has not been claimed and offer to pay the processing fee to pick it up.
· Make your own baby food. There are many books you can check out of the library to help get you started.
· Cloth diaper. Check out consignment sales for great deals. Cutie Tooties , in Knoxville, often offers free classes.
· Sign up for coupons and rebate programs at company websites.
· Frequent garage sales, thrift stores and consignment sales for the best bargains.
· Let friends know you would appreciate any hand-me downs.
Please include any additional tips you would like to share about coping with special needs in the comments section.