Healthy Eating on a Budget with Mitun Dada Cheto of Eat to Live Lifestyle

“This healthy eating thing, I would love to give it a try but it’s pretty expensive. I don’t think I can keep up.” At some point, this words may have been muttered even unconsciously by people considering switching to a healthy lifestyle. However, recently I found out, this may just be a myth.

A lifestyle is basically the way a person lives and a healthy lifestyle on the other hand would be the steps and actions you take to achieve optimum health as you live, some of which include healthy eating, being physically active, getting adequate rest, managing stress etc.

In this video interview, Stephanie Nyong asks Mitun Dada Cheto of the Eat to Live Lifestyle Abuja key questions about healthy eating-not just eating healthy but doing it on a budget because cost definitely seems to be a deciding factor for anyone who is considering this switch. She also tells us more about how to start and sustain healthy eating, how to prepare meals properly, why healthy eating is becoming increasingly important and then she goes ahead to show us some healthy meals including snacks…pretty interesting

Watch the video or read the interview transcription below


Healthy Eating on a Budget with Mitun Dada Cheto of Eat to Live Lifestyle Abuja

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SHi everyone! Welcome to Health Platforms, it’s a new episode and I am happy you are here right now watching this. So, today we will be discussing Affordable Healthy Eating. When the issue of healthy eating comes up, a lot of people think it will be so expensive, well people like us have started, stopped along the way and then we come back again. Today we have with us a professional who will be explaining to us in better details and also give us tips on how to continue and not just start. We are at Eat to Live lifestyle, a healthy eating place, really nice. We are with the Founder who will be educating us like I  said earlier. It’s a very beautiful place and you will definitely want to come after the interview.


So, Mitun it is nice to meet you again.  Firstly, what is the inspiration behind starting up this place? The first time I came, I was wowed and that was about two years ago.

Mitun: Hi Stephanie, there were two driving factors of how Eat to Live Lifestyle came about. I moved back to Nigeria few years ago and when I moved back, I struggled to find healthy things, so I would see maybe one vendor selling smoothie here and someone selling salad there and most of them tended to be selling out of their houses. There were no healthy places to go and get the healthy things around like when I was in the US or the UK. So I was like it would rather be nice if all the healthy foods are under one roof and that’s how the idea came about. Also, a few years ago my mother was unfortunately diagnosed with cancer and she did pass away. But during that time, the family as a whole had to change so many things especially her diet or what she eats and I realized that a lot of Nigerians and Africans do not realize that what we are eating is going into our body. The fact is that we are all going to die and eventually pass away but how do you want to pass away? It doesn’t have to be a painful experience. So, those two things actually brought about the starting of the business.


Okay thank you. So, healthy eating on a budget, I believe it’s possible and I hope am not assuming. How do you achieve this on a budget and not just any budget but a tight budget?

Mitun: So a lot of people do believe that healthy eating is expensive but it doesn’t have to be. If you are trying to do it as a lifestyle, I do recommend that a lot of healthy things that you use or eat you can do it yourself at home. Buying fruits from the market is not expensive, you are buying apples, pineapple, lettuce, cabbage, those things in themselves are not expensive compared to buying some all sort of other items. What you are paying for when you come to a place like this, Eat to Live Lifestyle,  is us preparing the things for you and packaging it and I would say that we are moderately priced. So, we are not over the top but I won’t say it is dead cheap neither. So I recommend that you maintain as a lifestyle which means that you do most of these things at home but there are some rare occasions when you need to be at work , you want it delivered to you. You call us and we do these things for you. So what I recommend is buying in bulk, prepare yourself, and we do have things that will help you maintain that healthy lifestyle.


Okay, so I believe we have a lot more options than salad. In eating healthy what comes to mind is Oh! Salad! I believe it goes way more than that, I can see we have a lot of options here. Being in the north makes it easier because vegetables are  even cheaper here in the north. So what are the other options?S

Mitun: Okay, what I really love about what we do is that  I am always on the hunt for different fun healthy items. Like what you just said most people think salad and its is a bit boring but we add little bit of snacks, there is balloon nuts, Greek Yoghurt-Greek Yoghurt itself is not sweet but we have few toppings we can add to it. You can add Granola to it, dry fruits like berries, tea syrups, honey, super foods like chess teas, flat teas, pumpkin teas, sunflower teas and so on and all those things are available here, we have tiger nuts milk, which is really good for women because it gives you energy. We also have like a breakfast smoothie that we make; It has strawberry, banana, almond milk which is a great alternative to regular milk. We have different healthy teas and we have some other healthy alternatives to rice, pasta and swallows. We have healthy swallows, we have burger wheats, we have different kind of pasta, cotton free pasta for those who are burning calories, so there are lots of different alternatives. This is another fun snack that I really like, it is called Baloo nuts, it has coconut candies, almonds, cashews and plantain chips. It’s a really good fun snack. So there are tons  of different things that we have that are alternatives to eating of candy bars and the regular pastries puff-puff and sausage rolls.


Are they as sweet as these normal pastries?S

Mitun: Yes and sometimes even sweeter.S


With Healthy living, when starting out, you have to make a conscious decision. So, for someone who doesn’t have access to a place like this, how do you help them cultivate this habit. Some people who wouldn’t want to go into the research in order to avoid wrong information, which is also time consuming. How do you help these people? Do you work with people one on one?

Mitun: Yes, we offer one on one consultation and we have whole time packages like healthy weight loss, healthy weight gain and also how to maintain your weight.

Like you said, there is a lot of information outside and what happens to most people is information overload and when that happens, you end up doing nothing. So when you come to us,literally, we would hold your hands and walk you through what you should be doing, so we do all the harder work for you and we are going to hold you accountable to make sure that you achieve your healthy weight gain or loss goals. So if you are interested, someone talks to you about the thing you really want to achieve and then we help you.


Now we have a lot of people having to suffer from different health conditions, and when you check these things, the common risk factor is unhealthy diet. So it is becoming increasingly important that people need to be aware of this. So, in your opinion, what would you say is the need for healthy eating?

Mitun: You hear people are suffering from diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure. In the past,  I have had really high blood pressure in my twenties and I was on medications and after about two three years, I was able to get off those medications and for over ten years I have not been back on any medication. All these is from me changing my lifestyle, not just what I put in my body but how I live my life, so I try to be more active, I won’t say I am a gym freak but I try to work out at least two three times in a week and sometimes I go to gym four to five times in a week. So I would encourage most Nigerians to change their lifestyle, you don’t have to wait till a doctor tells you Oh! You have high cholesterol. So, let’s be active, be conscious of what we put in our body and not everything that you see that is labelled healthy is healthy. Be an informed consumer, know what you are putting into your body and prepare your meals properly. You can give somebody and I the same set of ingredients and I will  make it completely different- I may use less oil, add ginger and garlic at a different time maybe we can still get the nutrients from these things and ginger and garlic naturally fight cancer cells. It is really important for us to live healthy lifestyle not only by what we eat but also being active. If you don’t like to work out there are certain things you can do just to make sure that you are still burning calories and burning fat and staying in a healthy condition. Your weight affects your fertility, if you overweight it is more of a struggle, it affects your bones when you are older, back pain, chest pain, etc. As Nigerians we should be conscious and aware of these things.


So, what you said about two different people making their food in different ways- I have always had this question on my mind. One time in school during our lectures, our lecturer said when you put vegetable in a pot of soup, you don’t have to put it for too long, just for like 5 or 10 mins. Can you just shed more light on how long we should cook vegetables? S

Mitun: It depends on what you are making, but generally, what I do is that, after I have made the sauce, I add my vegetable leaves last. Literally I don’t even leave it for about five to ten minutes, I cover it and let the steam cook it for that five minutes so it is not actually on an active fire which is killing the nutrients. It is a little soft and tender but still fresh and you are still getting all the nutrients.


Thank you everyone for watching this very insightful video. I hope we learnt a lot. I did, I have learnt a lot- My healthy eating game is going up to 100% right now . So, thank you so much for having us Mitun.

Mitun: Thank you for coming and thank you for having us.


Visit Eat to Live Lifestyle’s Website here
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Follow Stephanie Nyong on Social Media for more health updates

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Stephanie Nyong
About Stephanie Nyong 66 Articles
Stephanie O. Nyong is a seasoned health educator and content strategist at Health Platforms International where she empowers individuals especially women and girls with knowledge and skills to prevent and manage a number of health conditions. She is the founder of BE-ME Africa, a Breast Examination and Menstrual Education project for young girls. Stephanie also organises pop-up clinics regularly to provide affordable quality healthcare services to a target population. She is admired in the industry and has the capacity to deliver on the current demand for health literacy for improved health outcomes in Nigeria. You can connect with her across all social media handles @stephanie_nyong

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