Superfoods are essential for adequate nutrition. Because food today is so nutritionally depleted compared to what it was just 50 years ago, at least a few tablespoons of superfoods can help you get the nutrients you need for a strong immune system and a healthy body. Unfortunately, they can be costly, especially if you’re buying for a family. Here are five ways to buy superfoods when you’re living on a budget.
- Avoid the Superfoods Popular in the Mainstream: Whenever a superfood gets the attention of the public, demand for it increases and prices slowly rise. The most notable recent one is acai berry—while it’s indeed very healthful, the flurry of acai internet ads in the last year have caused prices to shoot up. While acai is great if you can afford it, you can get more bang for your buck on some under the radar ones, like alfalfa grass.
- Buy Supplements in Powdered Form: Powdered form is cheaper than tablet and capsule forms—you can sometimes even get twice the amount or more for the same amount of money. Tablets are cheaper than capsules, but you’ll have to make a judgment call on that—often the capsule forms are absorbed much better than tablets, so in terms of the actual intake, the cost might not be much different.
- Make Your Own Green Powders: There are some excellent green mix powder available, but most are marked up far higher than the sum of the individual ingredients. You can save money by buying superfood powders individually and then combining them yourself.
- Aim for Nutritionally Broad and Dense Superfoods: Not all superfoods are created equal. Some are spectacularly concentrated in just a few nutrients, like camu camu, while others can be considered true multivitamins in themselves, like bee pollen. Aim for the superfoods that give you the broadest, densest amount of nutrition, so you’re getting everything you need. For a list of these kinds of superfoods, please refer to this article.
- Buy the Value Brands: There are large differences in quality among supplement brands. The most expensive ones are great, but the mark-ups over more affordable ones can be significant. Is one pound of a high-end spirulina really worth more than two pounds of a more affordable one? It can be, but often, it’s not. A lot of times, you’d get more nutrients from taking double the amount from the latter than of the pricier one, maybe not double the nutrition, but maybe 40% or 50% more. You need to be careful though—some cheap brands are cheap for a reason. I have no financiale ties to them, but my personal favorite bang-for-your-buck value brand is NOW Foods, followed by Jarrow Formulas.