December 22, 2017 7:19 pm
Updated: December 22, 2017 7:26 pm

Can you eat with $2 a day? One Montrealer tried to do just that

WATCH: Could you live off $2 for food a day? Global's Gloria Henriquez meets one Montrealer who tried it.


A latte alone can run you $5 a day but imagine you are able to cut your entire grocery bill down to only $2 a day?

Is that even possible and what would it take to be successful?

It’s a question Alexandre Bustros set out to answer.

To give you an idea, Statistics Canada says the average Canadian spends about $7 a day on food.

READ MORE: How much does a week of groceries cost in Canada? We crunched the numbers

Story continues below

Bustros challenged himself to cut his food budget to $2 a day for one month.

The 38-year-old says it took a lot of research. He used a spreadsheet to figure out what the best prices were and what kinds of foods he needed for balanced nutrition.

And Bustros made a lot of sacrifices: from cutting out dairy and coffee, to biking for hours to get the best possible deals.

“I bought everything that was basic so I had oil so I could stir-fry stuff,” Bustros said.

“I ate a lot of lentils — a lot of lentils. Chickpeas as well, beans… because they’re very cheap and they’re very nutritious.”

READ MORE: Love eating out? Expect steeper bills in 2018, new food report says

Nutritionist Vanessa Perrone says Bustros faired really well.

“In terms of fresh fruits and vegetables, that’s probably a place where we’d want to pick things a bit more,” Perrone said.

“That’s where we’re gonna get the most prevention and health benefits.”

Perrone has advice for those who are trying to eat well on a budget: “Take the time to properly plan your meals for the week, writing out a proper  grocery list.

“A lot of grocery stores have now online options which is a great way to kind of look at your bill ahead of time and be mindful of what you’re going to purchase.”

Bustros also shared some of his money-saving secrets with Global News:

  • Markets tend to be cheaper than grocery stores.
  • Buy in bulk, don’t forget you can freeze things.
  • The further you walk into the market, the cheaper it gets. The first stands are always the most expensive.
  • Don’t forget to look down. Merchants stock their lower shelves or the sides of their stands with “ugly” but cheaper vegetables.

WATCH ABOVE: Alexandre Bustros walks Global News through the Jean-Talon market sharing tips to find deals. 

Bustros is telling his story in a new documentary called “$2 par jour” or “2 bucks a day”.

It’ll air Jan. 22 at Cinema Beaubien.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Report an error


Want to discuss? Please read our Commenting Policy first.