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When we think about saving money, our thoughts go directly to grocery shopping. Most of us go grocery shopping at least once a week, and if you’re one of them, you know how big the grocery bill is every time, so you might be tempted to buy some grocery store items that are on sale.

You have good reasons to do so, but is it really the best decision? Budget-friendly markdowns often mean that the products you’re about to buy are close to their expiration dates. And yes, some food items can still be consumed after the expiration date, but that’s not the case with the following foods; they most definitely don’t belong in your kitchen nor your refrigerator.

Let’s discover which foods you shouldn’t buy when they are on sale!

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Pre-cut veggies or fruit

Most times, pre-cut fruit and veggies are super convenient, especially when we are on the go. However, the fact that they are pre-cut comes with a cost. Pre-cut veggies and fruit are more expensive than the whole ones, and you might get pretty excited when you see them on sale.

Yet, buying them is not the smartest idea. Grocery shopping expert and the author of The Real Food Grocery Guide, Maria Marlowe, says that most stores put pre-cut veggies and fruit on sale because they are about to expire. So, if you’re not going to eat them the same day, it’s best to avoid them.

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Avocados have a great reputation and for good reasons. Due to their healthy monounsaturated fatty acids, avocados offer a wide range of health benefits like keeping your heart healthy, lowering triglyceride and cholesterol levels, protecting your eyes from age-related conditions, and relieving arthritis symptoms.

There’s a catch, though… Not all of us are avocado experts, so you might get overripe ones. And even if they are still safe to eat, you won’t like the taste. Most times, avocados go on sale when they are overripe, so if the taste doesn’t bother you, you are free to buy them, but if it does, your avocados will most likely end up in the trash can.

In other words, you are throwing money out of the window.

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Conventional/Non-organic Meat

Passing through the animal products aisle and seeing a great deal? Well, move on; animal products should be purchased based on the quality, not the price. It’s wise to spend more dollars on high-quality meat like grass-fed, organic, or pasture-raised than ending up with food poisoning at the emergency room.

However, if you can find high-quality animal products on sale and are determined to buy them, make sure you prep and cook them the same day or the next one. If your cooking plans don’t match the expiration date, don’t buy them. All in all, it’s best to spend a little more than taking any risks.

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Farmed Seafood

If we are referring to farmed seafood, don’t buy it, even when it’s on sale. Farmed seafood is not the healthiest choice. If you really want to enjoy seafood’s benefits, opt for wild seafood. In general, wild seafood is not as contaminated as farmed one. Plus, wild seafood is lower in saturated fat and calories compacted to farmed.

Additionally, wild-caught seafood is more nutritious. For instance, when it comes to salmon, a wild-caught one has a better omega 6 and omega 3 ratio. Plus, the farmed fish you are about to buy could be treated with antibiotics. So always choose wild seafood!

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Pre-washed, Bagged Salad Greens

Just like pre-cut fruit and veggies, ready-to-eat bagged salads are convenient, too. But are they really worth the money? In most cases, they aren’t, so you might want to buy them when you see them on sale. If that’s the case, please, don’t buy them.

If you really want to opt for pre-washed bagged salads, make sure to select properly refrigerated packages, show no signs of damage, wetness, or spoilage, and have the latest “use by” dates. The pre-washed bagged salad greens you want to buy are the ones that have the leaves dry and crisp.

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Baked Sweets

Of all grocery items, I think that cakes and bakery sweets are the most enticing products when placed on sale. But no matter how delicious they may seem to you, don’t buy them. Baked sweets are anything but healthy, especially the ones found in most grocery stores.

Still, it’s fine to consume them from time to time, but make sure you get fresh ones, and this is definitely not the case with baked sweets placed on sale at your local grocery store. The best thing to do is to bake your favorite sweets at home. This way, you’ll know for sure the amount of sugar you add.

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Nut Butter with additives or/and preservatives

In general, nut butter is pretty expensive, especially when you want to get the best of the best. For that reason, most people are tempted to buy the cheaper versions, but, unfortunately, cheaper doesn’t mean healthier, at least not when it comes to nut butter.

Most nut butters available at your local grocery store are filled with preservatives and additives, some containing unpronounceable ingredients. If you truly want to buy a good product, read the labels carefully. Ahh, and compared to almond butter, cashew butter and sunflower seed butter are less expensive. You could give them a try too… they taste amazing!

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Another healthy grocery item that shouldn’t miss from Americans’ plates is the old-fashioned egg. And even if they are relatively cheap, this kitchen staple disappears from our refrigerators like magic because we eat them often. So that’s why we feel compelled sometimes to buy them on sale.

But is it a good idea? Nutritionists and health pros avoid buying animal products like eggs, seafood, and meat on sale. Always opt for a high-quality animal product even if you’ll have to pay more for it. It is definitely worth the money. In a nutshell, if you or your spouse come across eggs that are deeply discounted, go in the opposite direction.

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Placed in the same category as eggs, milk is another kitchen staple you should avoid when on sale. In general, milk is an excellent source of good quality protein and vitamins like vitamin D, vitamin B12, and riboflavin. In fact, milk is also a pretty good source of thiamine, vitamin A, magnesium, and zinc.

Sadly, all those health benefits you get from milk’s nutrients and vitamins can go to waste if you’re not buying a good product. Before buying a discounted carton of milk, make sure to check its expiration date. You could buy a carton of milk that’s actually spoiled.

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There are many types of bread, and, according to nutritionists, the healthiest ones are sprouted whole-grain bread, sourdough bread, 100% whole wheat bread, oat bread, 100% sprouted rye bread, and flax bread. So, if you want to purchase healthy bread, look for brands that mention “100% whole-grain” or “sprouted flours.” Ahh, and no added sugars and vegetable oils.

Let’s say you do find a healthy bread brand, but then comes the price… After seeing it, you may think that you’ll wait for the product to go on sale, but even if it does, don’t buy it. No matter how healthy a bread brand might be, don’t make the mistake of buying its product on sale.

Most types of bread that go on sale stay for several days on the grocery store’s shelves, meaning that you’ll buy a product that on which will most likely grow mold sooner than you thought it would.

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Preservative free-foods

Is the product you’re about to buy marked “preservative-free?” Well… unless you’re going to consume it right away or cook it for today’s dinner, don’t buy it. Grocery store items that are marked “preservative-free” should be avoided when you don’t plan to eat them the same day, especially when they are on sale.

While avoiding preservatives in the foods you eat is the best thing you can do, it doesn’t mean that you can safely consume preservative free-foods whenever you want. Obviously, the lack of preservatives in most perishable food items like mushrooms, tomatoes, and leafy goodies makes them spoil really fast.

So, if you see them on sale, who knows for how long they sat around on the store’s shelves…

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