Mzansi, if you haven’t yet taken a good look at your household budget to find ways to cut costs, the time is now, says the president of the Association for Dietetics in South Africa (ADSA), Maria van der Merwe. But cutting costs does not have to mean giving up on quality nutritious food.
With rising fuel and food costs, it is becoming more and more difficult for lower and middle-income households to afford basic necessities. In South Africa, the food and non-alcoholic consumer price index has been increasing at a higher rate than the headline consumer price index since April 2020.
“This implies that the proportional cost of food has been increasing more than other consumer goods and more than household income,” Van der Merwe tells our sister publication Health For Mzansi.
All things considered, is there a way to reduce your family’s food budget without giving in on quality? According to ADSA spokesperson and registered dietitian, Zitandile Mfono, this is very much possible.
Focus on nutrient-rich foods
“There’s never been a better time to put your focus on nutrient-rich foods. What you want to do is find financial savings by cutting back on those foods that are nutrient-poor and energy dense, that are working against the aim of your family making healthy food choices,” Mfono says.
She unpacks items that can go on the chopping block first to free up some of your budget. These, she says, will make it more easier to afford a varied nutrient-dense diet.
It can even be as simple as changing some of your food shopping habits, adds Mfono. “What’s important is that there are many ways that we can stretch the food budget without compromising on nutritional quality. This is the time to take steps to reduce your household’s food waste and make sure that you are storing food in your kitchen correctly.”
Further in the article registered dietitians share tips for sticking to your budget. These include not sacrificing on fruits and veggies; making grains and cereals your best friend; expand your protein sources; and using fats sparingly.
Click here for a full list of tips and tricks to cut your budget without giving up on quality, nutritious food.
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