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Food Allergies Don't Have to Be Expensive

Posted September 6, 2012 by Kyle Hebert to Frugality 0 0
This post was written by a EasyFinance.com Community member. The views expressed below may not reflect the views of EasyFinance.com.

Dietary restrictions can be a real pain, but for some of us, they’re more than just an inconvenience –they’re necessary for normal living.  People with food allergies, sensitivities, intolerances, and recurring illnesses face many challenges, not least of which is finding ways to get their hands on the types of foods and medicines they need while staying on a reasonable budget.  Here are some tips on how to keep yourself happy and healthy without breaking the bank.

Find Allergy Friendly Recipes

Whether you live with dietary restrictions or not, cooking at home is generally cheaper than going out to eat, so it’s a good idea to learn to make some good dishes if you’re trying to cut costs.  The internet is a tremendous source of free recipes, and it’s not hard to find hundreds of meals online that cater to every conceivable food intolerance.  Gluten-free pizza dough?  Diabetic-friendly cookies?  Dairy-free rosemary potato frittata?  It’s all out there.  Plus you can find inventive ways to make your own substitutes out of other common ingredients.  Who knew you could use apple sauce instead of eggs in baking?

Find Discounts

You may be leery of buying medical supplies like diabetic testing strips online, but it can be a great way to get quality products for a reasonable price, and perfectly safe if you do it right.  Many people question the quality of medications or supplies being sold for lower than normal prices, but sellers on Ebay.com and similar sites sometimes end up with more than they need and simply try to cut their losses by selling off their excess strips. Use common sense to avoid suspicious purchases, but also be aware that there are perfectly legitimate reasons that someone might be selling brand name products at lower-than-market prices.

Buy In Bulk

Buying in bulk is sometimes a good way to cut costs in general, and the same goes for substitute ingredients or supplies like testing strips.  Of course, you don’t want to buy a huge quantity of anything unless you’re sure you like it or that it will work for you (otherwise you may end up selling off your leftover supply online).  Also, as with any kind of bulk shopping, make sure you check to make sure you’re actually getting a better deal than buying standard quantities--if not, then there’s not really a major benefit.


Don’t Be Afraid of Generics

Don’t rule out store brands! Most large chain supermarkets and pharmacies carry inexpensive foods and medicines that are just as good as the big-brand varieties.  You might not think of checking the generic packages for, say, gluten-free pasta, but it’s out there.  You may be surprised at what you find when you start checking labels; chain grocers are becoming increasingly attuned to the needs of people with restrictive diets, so they occasionally make inexpensive foods available without common allergens.

About Kyle Hebert: Kyle Hebert is a freelance writer for Medical ID Bracelet Marketplace, a Hope Paige company that provides stylish medical alert bracelets for those with allergies, diabetes, heart disease, breast cancer and more.

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