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Healthy Eating on a Budget 2019 takes off

Margaret Teys speaks with APD Jessica Bauer

Today marks the end of Smart Eating Week and to celebrate 20 people came to IWC’s Healthy Eating on a Budget workshop.

People from a variety of backgrounds attended the free session to learn from an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) in a fun group setting. These workshops are delivered by APDs Jessica Bauer and Natalie Selever.

In preparation for the sessions, the two APDs visited a local supermarket to identify options that were cheap and healthy alternatives for any locals looking to lose weight without spending a fortune on personal trainers and fad diets.

“I know I got a lot of out of it. I’ve been dieting all my life…and I actually learned a couple of things today,” said Margaret, a workshop participant who recently moved to Bundaberg from the Gold Coast.

“I do have a care plan, and I was wondering where I could see a dietitian in Bundaberg, so that’s what I came in to check out. My sister heard it advertised on the radio and rang me.

“I always thought you had to go out and buy fresh fruit and vegetables, but she (Jessica) was telling us it was completely ok (nutritionally) to buy frozen.”

Cassandra, a Bundaberg local, said she attended the session after hearing about it on Facebook.

“At the moment I’m looking at meal plans, to make it as cheap as possible – losing my hours at work hasn’t helped, so I’m trying to budget,” she said.

Healthy Eating on a Budget workshops are provided free every third Thursday of the month by IWC, Local Area Coordinator for the NDIS in the Bundaberg region. They run from 9am to 10.30am, with participants receiving a range of useful materials over the course of the talk.

As well as fitting with IWC’s general health and wellbeing focus, this initiative is part of IWC’s Information, Linkages and Capacity-Building (ILC) strategy, which targets people living with disadvantage or disability.

“A dollar saved is a dollar earned. The difference in spending between the ‘gourmet’, expensive healthy options and their cheap counterparts can be in the thousands of dollars per year,” an IWC spokesman said.

“Taking a quick glance through A Dietitian’s Guide to Budget Shopping with the other workshop participants, it was easy to see ways to cut weekly bills down significantly.

“For people looking to become socially or financially independent for the first time, this sort of information is foundational.”

In 2017-18, only 7.5% of Australian adults ate the recommended amount of vegetables and 67% were obese. According to the National Health Survey, this is a 3.6% increase from the previous financial year. 

For more information, call IWC on 1300 492 492, or visit the team at 184 Barolin St, Bundaberg.

About the author

IWC's major focus is to improve and support Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, and the vulnerable and disadvantaged people across the Bundaberg and Wide Bay / Burnett.

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