Consumers are cutting coupons now more than never. Watch any TV coupon program and you may wonder why a family needs 100 candy bars or 2 liter bottles of soda stored. Experts and nutritionists on consumer savings want buyers to know that unhealthy offers are not the only things that can be bought with coupons.
"One of the biggest myths about discounts is that there are no healthy food coupons, but they certainly exist," said Jill Cataldo, founder of the Super-Couponing workshops and author of the newspaper's column and video series. national broadcast "Super-Couponing Tips".
So before you grab the scissors to start cutting, remember that you do not have to sacrifice your health to save money on groceries.
One of the biggest myths about discounts is that there are no healthy food coupons, but they certainly exist.
Jill Cataldo, founder of the Super-Couponing workshops
Cut this out, not that
"The average value of the coupons has grown a lot in the last couple of years," said Andrea Woroch, an expert in the consumer savings that has been featured on NBC's "Today" show, "Fox & Friends" and "ABC News NOW." "People who probably never used coupons before now are willing to do so."
But go to the coupons section in the Sunday paper and it is very likely that you get discouraged with the discounts for French fries and other processed foods.
"Coupons are often used for packaged products that contain added sugars and trans fats," said Reyna Franco, a registered dietitian and certified physical trainer from New York City. "The coupons to be considered are low-fat and non-fat dairy products, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and bread. "
Because the Food and Drug Administration now requires food manufacturers to list trans fats on labels, it's easy to see what products are available on the coupons you should avoid on the shelves. Trans fats, found in vegetable shortenings, some margarines, cookies, and other snacks, can elevate low-density lipoproteins, or "bad" cholesterol levels.
If you're the type of buyer who tries to make smart shopping decisions, do not be discouraged by the number of coupons for junk or fat foods; There are coupons available for better foods, said Cataldo.
"I usually buy the same types of food that I would have bought before I became a coupon buyer," he said. "Recently, I've used coupons on everything from whole grains, organic soups, frozen vegetables, cups, yogurt, fresh strawberries, bags of oranges and more. "
Searching for organic coupons
Although coupons for organic foods used to be few and far between, consumers find it a little easier to find their favorite healthy food items at reduced prices, thanks, in part, to social networking sites.
Many organic companies actively promote their food on Twitter and Facebook, according to Cataldo, and following them on these networks may imply additional savings. Food stores also dedicate sections to coupons on their websites.
"Many organic food manufacturers and distributors do not put their coupons in the Sunday newspaper, preferring to send them directly by mail," said Cataldo, "but you have to go to their websites and choose to receive them."
The coupons you find for organic foods that match your shopping trip with store discount days will save you more money.
"Fortunately, increasingly larger supermarket chains are implementing healthy options like grass-fed meats and organic products," said Adrienne Hew, a certified New Jersey nutritionist. "The key to using the coupons is in going to stores on double and triple discount days ".
Voucher Cutting Services
Search the web and you'll find a number of websites that say Offer multiple coupons for your favorite products with mail delivery, which may confuse some buyers.
"A coupon is to be used only by the consumer who buys the product for which the coupon is printed", according to the Federal Trade Commission "The sale or transfer of coupons to a third party violates the exchange policies of coupons from most manufacturers, and usually cancels the coupon. "
However, coupon-trimming companies evade this policy by selling the clipping, bundling, and shipping of the coupons, instead of selling the coupons at face value. Instead of investing your time in these services, Cataldo recommends simply buying more newspapers, or printing the coupons available online.
Asking friends and colleagues for coupons they do not use, works well, too. If you have a smartphone you can find a variety of applications that offer coupons directly on your phone, or charge discounts instantly to store loyalty cards.