March 3, 2023
Nutrition Month is hosted by Dietitians of Canada every year.
This year’s theme is “Unlock the Potential of Food: Find a Dietitian”. Did you know dietitians can support you in making nutritious food choices to help manage your blood sugars while also limiting your grocery budget?
The cost of groceries is increasing and Canada’s Food Price Report 2023 predicts food prices will increase in 2023 by 5% – 7%. While a rise in food prices can be stressful, it remains possible to eat healthy and control your blood glucose on a budget.
Try these 10 tips to reduce your grocery bill (adapted from Unlock the Potential of Food: Find a Dietitian – 10 Tips for Planning Meals on a Budget):
1. Create a menu and meal plan
· Plan your meals for the week including breakfast, lunch and dinner. Having a plan may reduce amount of money spent on fast food and convenience meals.
2. Shop the sales
· Plan your meals around sales. Using an app like Flipp can help you compare prices from many different stores in one place.
· Do not buy just because it is on sale. If it goes to waste, you are wasting your money. Ensure you have a plan for these foods.
3. Include plant-based meals
· Often times beans, lentils and tofu are more affordable protein options. Try incorporating some plant-based meals. There are plenty of recipes on cookspiration.com.
· Tip: if a recipe calls for ground beef, try replacing half of the ground beef with cooked lentils.
4. Shop your pantry, refrigerator and freezer
· Use up the foods you already have before buying more. Look up recipes that include the ingredients you have. Use a websites such as MyFridgeFood – Home for ideas.
5. Enjoyed fresh, frozen and canned fruits and vegetables
· Frozen and canned fruits and vegetables can be just as nutritious as fresh and they are more affordable.
· If choosing canned fruit, choose fruit packed in water.
· If choosing canned vegetables, choose no salt added.
6. Avoid recipes that require a special ingredient
· If a recipe calls for an ingredient you do not typically buy, ask yourself the following questions: How much does the ingredient cost? How large of a portion will you purchase? Will you be able to eat it all before it goes bad? If it will go to waste, try substituting an ingredient you already have.
7. Eat in season
· Choose seasonal recipes – fresh fruits and vegetables can be more affordable when eaten in season.
· Use this guide to see what is in season: Availability guide | Foodland Ontario
8. Plan for leftovers
· Eat your leftovers. If you are cooking a chicken, use the leftovers in another way such as for sandwiches or in a salad. Try this e-book for more ways to reuse leftovers: Easy Meals for Great Leftovers e-book – Unlock Food
9. Make extras
· Double the recipe and freeze for later. For example, if ground meat is on sale, make 2 batches of lasagna or shepherd’s pie and freeze one for later.
10. Incorporate what your family enjoys
· Involve your family with meal planning. If they enjoy the food, you will waste less.
We hope these tips can help you save money on your grocery bill. Happy Nutrition Month!
For more information on Nutrition Month, please visit: https://www.unlockfood.ca/en/NutritionMonth.aspx