Ingredients for a Healthier Tomorrow – How to Eat Sustainably While Saving Money
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How can you eat a more sustainable diet on a budget?

+ Rainbow Tofu Stir Fry with Chinese Barbecue Pork Recipe

Sustainable Diet - Sustainable Food Security

March is Nutrition Month and this 40th celebration has made it a priority to focus on Ingredients for a Healthier Tomorrow.  

In case you are unsure of the roles of a dietician, this snippet from the Dietitians of Canada states it clearly: “Dietitians, through their roles in various sectors of work, influence change across key ingredients within a sustainable food system. From food security to food literacy and food sovereignty, to sustainable food choices, and nutrition care and prevention, dietitians from across Canada are acting on the ingredients needed to create a healthier tomorrow with you, your community, and the planet.”  

In addition to my role as an online nutritionist/consulting dietitian for Health Stand Nutrition, I am also a community and media dietitian, and actively advocate for food security and food literacy in the local community. In the past two years since the covid pandemic started, I have hosted more than 20 virtual health and wellness workshops as well as cooking demos for the community in partnership with non-profit and non-governmental organizations. Some of these organizations provide services to older adults, new immigrants and people that are facing food insecurity and barriers to access public health information due to literacy and language barriers.  

These workshops have reached 20,000 + people across Canada and Asia.  In these virtual workshops, the participants are helped to make food decisions that are right for them by communicating trustworthy nutrition information, building confidence in their food skills, and addressing the external influences that impact their food decisions. The workshop hosts generously awarded food samples and supermarket gift cards to the participants. 

According to the 12th edition of Canada’s Food Price Report released in December 2021, the average Canadian family of four is predicted to pay an extra $966 for food in 2022, for a total annual grocery bill of $14,767.  This represents a 7% increase compared to the previous year. It also indicates that almost one in five Canadian households struggle with food insecurity and has difficulty putting foods on the table for their families.

How can I eat a more sustainable diet on a budget?

Eating a more sustainable diet involves making food choices that will enhance your health and promote a healthy environment and ecosystem to meet the future food needs of the population.  A few tips for those seeking to eat a more sustainable diet include buying local, choosing plant-based proteins more often, diversifying your protein sources by adding nuts, lentils, or beans, reducing food waste by planning meals, and drinking tap water when it is safe to do so.   

Another tip to save money and reduce food waste is to follow the ‘4 Rs’:  

  1. Reduce food waste by doing meal planning  
  2. Replace animal protein with plant-based protein 
  3. Recycle veggie scraps to make soup or stock 
  4. Reuse foods by eating leftovers 

Other money-saving tips: 

  1. Cook more often from scratch instead of ready-to-use or highly processed foods.
  2. The price of meat has increased the most. Look for items on sale and freeze them, and cheaper cuts of meat are a viable choice when using cooking methods to tenderize the meat. 
  3. Choose cheaper non-dairy alternatives (fortified soy, almond, oat beverage, etc.) in tetra packs. 
  4. Buy dry beans, lentils, or whole grains and cook them in a pressure cooker or crock pot ahead of time for quick and easy pre and breakfast on the go. 
  5. Only buy what you need and keep shelf stable items in the kitchen cupboards 
  6. Buy both fresh and frozen vegetables and produce as they are equally nutritious and provide the vitamins, minerals and fibre that are good for your body and health 

For more information about Nutrition Month, click here. The free e-recipe booklet can be downloaded from www.nutritionmonth.ca.

Rainbow Tofu Stir Fry with Chinese Barbecue Pork (Char Siu) 

Recipe created by Cook with 3C (Chinese Cuisine and Herbal Chef Jason, Registered Dietitian Amy Yiu, Traditional Chinese Medicine Doctor Jennifer Gao) 

Makes 4 servings

Rainbow Tofu Stir Fry with Chinese Barbecue Pork (Char Siu) Ingredients: 

  • Pressed tofu 150 g
  • Red pepper Half
  • Orange pepper Half 
  • Dried shrimp 40g 
  • Chinese Barbecue Pork (Char Siu)  50g 
  • Garlic Shoot 200g 
  • Garlic 3 cloves 


  • Vegetable oil 1 tbsp 
  • Salt ¼ tsp  
  • Mushroom powder 1 tsp
    Cornstarch 1 tsp 
Rainbow Tofu Stir Fry with Chinese Barbecue Pork Recipe


  1. Cut the garlic shoots into sections, slice bell peppers, and chop the garlic.
  2.  Pre-soak the dried shrimp.
  3. In a pot of boiling water, blanch the garlic shoots and pressed tofu for one minute and put aside to drain. 
  4. Heat the wok/frying pan, add vegetable oil, add garlic and sauté until fragrant, add sliced Chinese barbecued pork.  Stir well, then put it on a plate for later use.
  5. Heat the wok/frying pan, add vegetable oil, add the garlic and sauté until fragrant, stir fry bell peppers for a while, add the garlic shoots, pressed tofu and dried shrimp, sliced Chinese barbecued pork. Add 1-2 tbsp of water, salt, and mushroom powder.
  6. Add a tsp cornstarch to 1 tbsp. of water and stir well.  Add immediately to the wok and stir well until the sauce coats the stir fry items.  Serve and enjoy!

Looking for the right Registered Dietitian for you? We’ve got your back!

Our diverse team of registered dietitians specialize in a range of specialities to support you such as: emotional eating, eating disorders, sports nutrition, family meal planning, health concerns like diabetes, digestive issues, and more!

We offer both in person (in Calgary) services as well as online nutrition counseling. Our team empower people just like you to live healthFULLY + soulFULLY.

Discover which RD is right for you, today!

If you enjoyed this blog, check out our other articles on related topics:

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Success stories

"I am a psychologist in private practice and it is very important to me that my clients have the best care with other health care professionals. For that reason Health Stand Nutrition is my only source for exceptional Dietitians. Andrea and her team provide highly knowledgeable, compassionate, and real world support to my clients who require assistance with food lifestyle. I trust my clients to them and you would be in excellent hands making them part of your health care team."
Adele Fox, Psychologist
“This is the first time I feel satisfied; my cravings have diminished dramatically and I have a whole new relationship with food. I am eating guilt-free for the first time in my life. My energy has also dramatically increased and I feel great!
Rhonda Jenkins, Nutrition Counseling Client
“The Dieticians at Health Stand Nutrition help you to take action on the science behind eating well by making it practical, understandable, and fun. Their office is cozy and not at all clinical or intimidating. I felt like I was sitting down with a really smart, caring friend who wanted to help me make the best choices for my lifestyle and food preferences. They really are the best in the business.”
Marty Avery, Nutrition Counseling Client
“I have come to think of the program as a one stop shopping excursion for everything one needs to know about creating a joyous relationship with food and our bodies. In a single word, the course has gifted me with freedom from the punishing rigidity of disordered eating, old stories that never were true, and body dysmorphia that did nothing but make me lose sight of a body that has done everything I've asked, despite my careless dismissal of her needs. Now when I look in the mirror I find myself shifting from harsh criticism to gentle gratitude.”
Lynn Haley, Pursuit of Healthiness Online Course Participant
“I spent 3 hours when first diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. I learned more from my Dietitian about food in those 3 hours than I had learned in all the years of my life. I also love the newsletter, there is always something to learn.”
Peter Whitehead, Nutrition Counseling Client
“I didn’t realize how strong my “diet mentality” was, and all the rules I had in my head about food. I was in a cycle of reward/punish/binge/cringe. I booked with your business very reluctantly, on the repeated advice of my doctor, to get my slowly rising cholesterol levels in check. I thought I knew everything about food, and my behaviour with food, but I was definitely re-schooled. My weight is creeping down, I feel good about my diet, exercise, body image, and lifestyle.”
Amy Floyd, Nutrition Counseling Client
“Thanks Andrea for an amazing presentation, I have heard all positive remarks from attendees and the evaluations show the same sentiment. It is really gratifying when a speaker does their “homework” and weaves in our profession’s day to day challenges within their content, you did an awesome job of this! You truly took the “die” out of Dietician! Your information on healthy eating and simplifying how we can work towards this as we are all so busy really hit the mark. Andrea connects very well with her audience; she is energetic, funny, and very approachable.”
Carole Ann LaGrange, Transfusion Medicine Safety Officer

Event Planner for Laboratory Diagnostic Imaging Annual Event

I am a family physician who sees patients with a myriad of eating concerns – from wanting to know how to plan healthy meals for active families, to weight loss, to eating disorders, and so on. I cannot recommend the Health Stand team highly enough. I have worked with (and been to!) other Dieticians in the past and too often find that they just ask for food logs and make suggestions that are easily obtained online or in books. The Dieticians at Health Stand offer much more than just telling clients what they “should be eating.” In contrast, the team really does more of a counselling practice, and they work hard to help their clients learn more about why their eating habits may be off track and not optimal for them, as well as helping people to effect change at a deep level that, most importantly, is sustainable for lifetime health.”
Dr. Deb Putnam, Family Physician

Nutrition Counseling Client & Referring Physician

“I am a busy mom, with kids in high level sports, working full-time downtown, and running our home acreage outside the City. I now have the knowledge and tools I need to plan for and manage the chaos of meal planning.”
Gillian Gray, Pursuit of Healthiness Online Course Participant
“As a construction company, we select speakers who can relate to our industry and its employees. Andrea’s message was delivered with humor and empathy. She makes people feel as though they can make changes without leaving behind every favorite food. Andrea focused her presentation on healthy eating as a way to keep energy high throughout the day. This message and the way it was delivered resonated with our predominantly male, blue collar culture. I would highly recommend Andrea as a speaker for groups such as ours. She will get your message across without alienating anyone in your audience – which is a huge hurdle when trying to introduce a wellness program in the workplace!”
Stephanie Wood, HR and Safety Manager

Fisher Construction Group, Burlington, WA

I found my Dietitian warm, funny, and skilled at teaching nutrition concepts without the overwhelm. The general approach of each session was to mix science with emotion, which was exceedingly effective in helping me shift my perspective on food from one of anxiety to one of joy and curiosity.”
Erin Kronstedt, Nutrition Counseling Client
“Excellent presentation! What a refreshing change to have a speaker inspire rather than “lecture” about nutrition. Your captivating stories, tips and overall approach to healthy eating uplifts and puts people at ease. It was great to hear we don’t need to strive to be perfect eaters, and that small changes really can make a difference in how we feel and in our health. Thanks to Andrea, we have solutions to our everyday nutrition challenges that can actually work in real life!”
Tina Tamagi, Human Resources

ARC Resources Ltd.

“Had I not joined this course I would have struggled with no focus, low energy, and mindless eating. Excellent teaching and motivation. This is not just a course, it is a nutrition club with mentorship, support, and connections with other people with similar situations.”
Lorri Lawrence, Pursuit of Healthiness online course participant

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