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You can spend less on nutritious food

By Vision Reporter

Added 13th January 2002 03:00 AM

Categorising learners according to academic ability, poor school diet, a weak administration, lazy parents have all been blamed for school riots

Categorising learners according to academic ability, poor school diet, a weak administration, lazy parents have all been blamed for school riots

By Grace Canada CHRISTMAS has been here and now gone, the fever has cooled off, and reality has started to set in. Parents are preparing for the next term’s school fees and other back to school expenses. Children including hungry teenagers are home for the long holidays. This for most parents spells some financial difficulties. Many are wondering how to manage. Here are some simple helpful suggestions to help you manage the feeding part of it. Set priorities Let food be at top of them. Buy foods that promote good health and build strong blood, bones, muscles, and enhance mental development. Healthy foods include - Grains, legumes, and nuts such as millet, maize and maize flour No.2, soya bean products, other beans and peas, simsim seeds, groundnuts, wholewheat bread, chapati and rice. - Vegetables Tomatoes, cabbage, green pepper, green beans, green peas, carrots, pumpkin and pumpkin leaves, sukuma wiki ( collared greens), dodo, buga, nakati, ntula, nsuga, jobyo, okra, mulokeya, malkwang, gobe, cauliflower, eggplant, bisoboza, and any other green vegetables that grow in your area. - Fruits: Mango, pawpaw, manganda, oranges, fene, guavas, avocado, apples, passion fruit, pineapple, water melon, ripe bananas, lime, lemons, eshari emizaituni, enkomamawanga and any other fruits and berries that grow in your area. - Starch foods: Potatoes, yams, cassava, rice, posho, wheat products. - Protein foods: Eggs, milk, yoghurt, fish, meat, poultry, soyabeans, groundnuts, other dry beans and peas. It is important to understand that these plant protein foods have to be combined with millet, maize, or wheat in order to make a complete protein that is necessary for body building. - Health snacks: Sugarcane, simsim seeds, groundnuts and any other fruit in season. - If you’re a farmer, do not sell eggs, vegetables and fruits in order to get money for buying non-essential and non-nutritious foods. - You do not have to feel that you have to spend a lot of money on luxury foods in order to be a good parent. Most of these foods have no nutritional value. These include all sodas and colourful sugary beverages, biscuits, cake, chocolate and white bread. - You need to take time to explain to your children the difference between healthy nutritious foods and those that are not. - Avoid buying food from neighbourhood kiosks. They tend to be expensive and are not fresh. They are certainly not a good buy for your money. - Whenever possible buy charcoal in sacks, and cooking oil by a litre. This helps to save some money. Also invest in a pressure cooker and an energy saving charcoal stove for cooking beans, peas and other foods that consume a lot of fuel. - Buy onions at peak season, dry them in a cool airy place. They can keep for as long as six months. - Avoid buying foods that are just coming in or going out of season as they tend to be expensive. Here is an example of how you can combine these foods in planning nutritious meals on a strict budget for your family. Day one, breakfast for six porridge, 1/2kg maize flour No.2 sh250 1/4 kg sugar sh300 6 eggs sh600 6 ripe bananas sh300 Total sh1,450 Lunch for six 1 kg beans or peas sh600 1 kg rice sh600 onions and tomatoes sh100 3 avocados sh300 cooking oil sh100 Total sh1,700 Supper for six 1/2kg groundnuts + dry fish sh1,600 sweet potatoes sh1,000 dodo or buga sh500 Day two: Millet porridge breakfast for six 1kg millet flour sh600 1/2 litre milk sh400 1/4 kg sugar sh300 Pineapple sh1000 Total sh1,300 Lunch for six 1kg rice sh600 2 fresh fish sh2,000 cooking oil sh50 onions+tomatoes sh100 nakati sh500 Total sh3,250 Supper for six 1kg peas sh600 1kg posho sh600 onions + tomatoes sh100 cabbage sh600 cooking oil sh100 Total sh2,000 Day three breakfast for six Roasted sweet potatoes sh600 1litre Milk for tea sh800 1/4 sugar sh300 6 ripe bananas sh300 Total sh1,900 Lunch for six Matooke sh2000 1/2 kg g.nuts sh600 Dry fish (Nkeje) sh1,000 Buga sh500 Onions+tomatoes sh100 Mix dry fish with g,nuts Supper for six Cassava sh1,000 Onions + tomatoes sh100 1kg mputa sh2000 Ntura, nakati sh500 Cooking oil sh100 Total sh3,700 For estimate sh5,000 for charcoal or firewood per day. These are simply suggestions of how foods can be combined. You can make any food combinations provided you include fruit, vegetables, a starch food and a protein food in each meal. The writer holds an MSc in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from the University of California, Berkeley, USA.

You can spend less on nutritious food

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