Because eating fruits and vegetables is one of the most important things you can do for your long-term health, it’s important to know that they can fit easily into any food budget and any lifestyle. Here are three easy ways to do this:

1. Buy smart.

Stretch your food budget by limiting the purchase of foods that have few vitamins, minerals and fiber per calorie, such as chips, cookies, candy and soda. And buy foods that offer high nutrition content per calorie like fruits, vegetables (including beans and lentils) and 100 percent fruit or vegetable juice.

"Many fruits and vegetables at grocery and convenience stores are now available in convenient packages..."

2. Eat all forms.

Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, including those that are fresh and in-season, as well as their canned, dried and frozen counterparts! By doing so, researchers at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Economic Research Service have found that getting the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables costs only $2 - $2.50 per day! Fresh produce is inexpensive unless you have to throw it away, so buy only what you’ll eat. Farmers Markets and community gardens, along with your local supermarket, are all great places to buy fresh, in-season produce. If you live in the city, bodegas and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) are great options to buy a variety of fruit and veggies. A quick Internet search will yield all of the CSA locations within your city.

3. Eat out less.

Eating out costs, on average, three times more than at home. Many fruits and vegetables at grocery and convenience stores are now available in convenient packages making it easy to grab a healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack when you’re on the go or in need of a quick meal. It’s less expensive to pay extra for these packaged items than it is to eat out.

Need a little more help? Look for the Fruits & Veggies—More Matters® logo on the front or back of a label. Stringent nutritional criteria must be met before a package can carry the logo so you can be assured you are buying a very healthy product for you and your family!