THE cost-of-living crisis is having a major impact on how people shop, cook and eat.

And, worryingly, research shows that this is forcing people to make compromises on their weekly shop by choosing less healthy options.

But, as Flintshire Slimming World consultant Tracey Evans explains, eating healthily doesn’t have to be expensive.

In fact, evidence shows that Slimming World members don’t spend any more on food than people who aren’t trying to lose weight.

And now savvy slimmers are turning to their weekly groups to share tried and tested tips on slimming down and shrinking their food bills.

Read more: Flintshire and Wrexham projects win share of funding grant

Slimming World recently asked group members to share their money-saving ideas and hundreds gave their advice for following their Food Optimising eating plan on a budget.

As one of Slimming World’s local weight-loss experts, Tracey runs a group in Buckley.

She said: “Unsurprisingly, losing weight on a budget has been a hot topic in our groups over the recent weeks. I’m always amazed by what a treasure trove of useful information our groups are.

"I learn something new every week. Members share low cost recipes and top tips for saving money, as well as tracking down bargains and special offers, so it’s easy to know where to go for the best deals locally. We often pop them on our closed Facebook group too.”

The Leader: Slimming World.Slimming World. (Image: Slimming World.)

PIC: Tracey Evans before and after her own Slimming World journey.

Here are her eight top tips to slim and save:-

1. Batch Cook - Preparing and making meals for the days and weeks ahead was the most popular piece of advice from slimmers. From soups and sauces to ready-made roasted vegetables that can be stored in the freezer, critical to this money-saving tactic is ensuring no food is thrown away.

2.Meal planning - Hitting the supermarket armed with a shopping list also ranked highly as a cost-saving slimming strategy.

3. Use your freezer - As well as stocking their freezers with batch cooked dishes, Slimming World members showed a depth of knowledge about the many foods that can be frozen, including milk, bread, eggs and more, to avoid food wastage.

4. Buy own brand - A simple change many Slimming World members reported having made to reduce their food budget was swapping to supermarket own brand products, including ‘essentials’ ranges, for many grocery items.

5. Save energy - With rising energy bills, lots of slimmers have also been paying attention to which appliances in their home use the most power.

6. Bulk out meals - With some foods costing more than others, slimmers are taking inspiration from times gone by and adding cheaper, more filling ingredients, such as root veg and pulses, to meals to bulk them out.

7. Shop smarter - Opting for tinned and frozen veg, selecting seasonal fresh produce and looking out for wonky veg are all great ways to cut the cost without compromising on the healthfulness of your weekly shop, according to slimmers.

8. Bag the best offer -s Lots of slimmers recommended shopping in the evening when lots of items are reduced, while others expounded the benefits of supermarket loyalty card discounts and cashback voucher schemes.

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