The best budget-friendly foods to boost your gut health

Oats and frozen berries are two budget-friendly foods that can boost your gut health. (Getty Images)
Oats and frozen berries are two budget-friendly foods that can boost your gut health. (Getty Images)

January is a time of reinvention, but it’s also the time of year where we are the most cash-strapped thanks to the indulgence of the festive period.

Which is why it can be difficult to get the balance of healthy eating on a budget right, but it’s not an impossible feat.

"Getting in your vitamins is important for good health and overall wellness, and you can do it on a budget," Samanta Greener, wellness expert for Simply Supplements, says.

"Fruit and vegetables give a lot of what you need. Leafy green spinach is an all round superstar, packed with iron, antioxidants and vitamins C and K. You can include spinach in pretty much everything. Try it in a curry or on a pizza, or use it as a base for a tasty salad or in a smoothie."

Vitamins are a key way to boost gut health too, as they can reduce inflammation in the gut and make it easier for your body to absorb nutrients from the food you’re consuming.

Best low-cost foods to boost gut health

Below, Greener reveals the best vitamin-packed foods that you can buy on a budget which will help with both protein and fibre intake.

Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a good source of vitamin A, which is essential for immune function, as well as good vision and skin health.

"They’re also a healthier alternative for people who find they have too many regular potatoes in their diet," Greener adds. "Try making some sweet potato fries, add to a curry or in a soup."

tray of oven baked sweet potato chips in closeup. Baked with paprika, rosemary and salt. Homemade cooked sweet potatoes with spices and herbs on oven-tray.
Sweet potatoes are important for immune function. (Getty Images)


Spinach is so cheap and versatile which makes it a great addition to any weekly shopping list.

"This leafy green is full of iron and antioxidants which protect our cells from damage. It’s also packed with vitamin C to support our immune system and vitamin K which is essential for blood clotting and building strong bones," Greener explains.


Oranges are low cost and packed with vitamin C which is essential for healthy skin, teeth, and immune function.

"The easiest way to incorporate oranges is to eat it as a piece of fruit after a meal," Greener says. "Alternatively you could juice or make a tasty orange cake."


"Not only are they a good source of protein, but lentils are great at providing us with our B vitamins," Greener explains.

"They are a good source of vitamin B1 and vitamin B9 which are important for converting food into energy and are necessary for cell growth and division."

Greener suggests using lentils to bulk up your meals, such as bolognese or cottage pie.

Tinned tomatoes

Tinned tomatoes will be one of the cheapest items on your grocery list, and they come with a host of vitamins too.

"Budget tinned tomatoes contain lots of vitamin C and some B vitamins," Greenver says. "Use these to make a pasta sauce, add to soups or use to bulk up casseroles."

Spinach can be used as a salad base or in smoothies. (Getty Images)
Spinach can be used as a salad base or in smoothies. (Getty Images)


While eggs have definitely risen in price recently, they are still a low cost protein compared to meat protein sources.

"Eggs are a great vitamin rich food which you can turn into a healthy meal in minutes," Greener says. "They’re rich in vitamins B and D. Try making an omelette, tasty quiche or simply scramble or boil some eggs for breakfast."


Oats, whether used in porridge, for making overnight oats, or following the baked oats trend, are incredibly low cost and versatile.

"Oats in porridge is a balanced breakfast that has great levels of carbs, protein and fat and can be made extra nutritious by adding your favourite fruits on top," Greener says.

Frozen berries

"These are a cost effective way to get more fruit into your diet," Greener explains. "Try a mixed bag of berries. Blueberries and strawberries are both a good source of vitamin C and fibre, You can add these to yoghurts or use to make a smoothie."

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