“It’s more important than ever to keep up healthy habits and eat nutritious foods during this time, and it doesn’t have to break the bank,” says the Heart Foundation Director of Health Strategy, Julie Anne Mitchell.

Unhealthy, nutrient-poor foods make up more than one third of the average person’s daily kilojoules. Here's what a healthy grocery sho looks like:
Keep your pantry healthy on a budget
• Action plan: Make a grocery list and stick to it. Check what you already have in your fridge and pantry and only buy what you know you will use to avoid wasting food.
• Eat the rainbow: One of the best ways to stay healthy is to fill up on plenty of fruit and vegetables. The more colourful the mix the better. Frozen or canned vegetables and fruits are good alternatives when fresh produce is hard to buy or too expensive, and they keep for longer. If you are buying canned versions, try to choose the ‘no added salt’ or ‘low salt’ versions. Pick fruits canned in juice, not syrup.
• Mix it up: Buy more plant-based sources of protein, in line with the Heart Foundation’s
updated dietary advice. Tinned or dried beans, lentils and chickpeas are cheaper and are
healthy options for your pantry, or try tofu to keep in the fridge. Eggs or canned fish (such
as tuna or salmon) are also cheaper and easy to prepare.
• Cheaper cuts: Look for less expensive cuts of meat to use in stews, soups and casseroles. Cut off visible fat before cooking.
• Go for wholegrains: Brown rice, wholegrain pasta and rolled oats are budget-friendly
staples for healthy cooking. Swap white bread for a wholegrain loaf and freeze some of it.
• Snack smart: Go for a handful of unsalted nuts or a small plate of cut up fruit to curb
afternoon cravings. You could also buy popping corn and make homemade popcorn. It's
best to either have it plain (no added salt or butter) or flavour with other herbs and spices.
• Healthy hydration: Skip the aisle of sugary soft drinks and energy drinks and make water
the drink of choice. It’s healthy, hydrating and free.
Stay safe while shopping
• Good timing: Get groceries only when you need to and try to shop at quieter times to
avoid crowds. Organise your list by areas of the store to limit the time you spend there.
• Go the distance: Avoid close contact with other shoppers (keep at least 1.5 metres apart),
and only touch items you are going to purchase.
• Hand hygiene: Wash your hands with soap and water before going into store and take
along alcohol-based hand sanitiser. If possible, disinfect your shopping trolley with wipes.
• Contain coughs: Cover your coughs and sneezes with your elbow or a tissue and dispose
of tissues properly.
• Cards not cash: Use tap and pay if possible, to avoid handling cash.
• Keep it clean: Remember to clean and sanitise frequently used objects such as your keys
and wallet.

NB: Find out your risk of heart attack or stroke by using our Heart Age Calculator.

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