Amanda Hilton - Amanda Hilton


My name is Amanda Hilton

About me


I'mAmanda Hilton R.H.N.

Registered Holistic Nutritionist

Are you looking to become the best YOU possible? Need help kicking sugary cravings and cutting out processed foods from your diet? Do you have interest in switching to a plant-based lifestyle but are unsure of where to start or how to adjust in a healthy way? I want to help educate and inspire you to reach and maintain your health goals through dietary and lifestyle changes that are doable and realistic.

My passion for food and health lead me to pursue a profession in holistic nutrition. Being diagnosed with Celiac in 2012 really gave me the incentive to kick-start my own journey to holistic well-being. This has led me to share my experience and education with others about the health benefits of natural nutrition.

As a nutritionist, I provide support as we work together to understand the root cause of your symptoms and make personalised and gradual lifestyle changes to accomplish your health and wellness goals.

It is important to me to take the time to connect with all my clients and learn about them as unique individuals. Click on one of my links to learn more about my services or feel free to message me to set up a consultation so we can chat about your health goals and begin your journey to living your BEST life. I can’t wait to hear from you!


Certified Holistic Nutritionist

Eating a nutritious and balanced diet is one of the best ways to protect and promote good health.

Meal Planning

A proper diet makes a huge difference in your enitre life. It helps give you more energy, focus and overall well being.

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My Blog

Weekly Meal Plan

Weekly Meal Plan

July 24, 2022

Amanda Hilton

This week, I've decided to make a full day meal plan for the week instead of just dinners. The dinner meals are for the whole family whereas the breakfast and lunch will be mostly for me and my oldest daughter. When I have my meals planned, I’m not as likely to just snack on whatever I can grab throughout the day.

Each day breakfast is a smoothie and a macadamia milk latte. Before breakfast, I drink 1 litre of lemon water to help get my body ready for a day of digesting. Lunch will either be a salad, soup or a combo of a bit of each. I’m also planning on making a few batches of some healthy muffins (like the zucchini muffins in picture) and some energy bars/bites which are easy for my daughter to pack in her work lunch. For dinners we are having:

* DIY gluten free pizza and salad
* Twice baked sweet potatoes with broccoli, kale and chickpeas
* Vegan paella
* Brown rice noodles with pumpkin sauce and a salad
* Potato white bean soup
* Vegan chili
* Tofu or beyond sausage with roasted veggies and quinoa

Follow on instagram @amandahiltonrhn or facebook cert.holisticnutritionist for daily menu plan.

I went out yesterday to do my shopping for this week and saved $5 picking up my coffee syrups (member rewards) and $20 at the Superstore with PC points. I also earned 5800 points while at the Superstore. When I got home I saved an additional $0.75 through Eclipsa and $3.00 with Checkout 51.

Total savings of $33.75
Total spent: ECS coffee $20, Superstore $256

Budget and Money Saving Journey Day 5 & 6

Budget and Money Saving Journey 
Day 5 & 6

July 21, 2022

Amanda Hilton

Today we had an unexpected expense come up. Our pup was feeling under the weather so we took a trip to the vets. She is fine but we had to put her on some antibiotics and a few other meds to help her get back to feeling her best. Overall, the appointment cost us $200. Thankfully, we had some money in our vet envelope from the previous budget to cover most of the cost. This is another reason I think budgeting is so important. Unexpected things happen and it's nice to have a plan to cover the cost instead of creating debt. 

I also did some saving today. I LOVE coffee and my favourite brand, Ethical Bean, has a program where you can send your empty packages back for recycling and they will send you another bag of whole bean coffee totally FREE. That's a savings of $14! 

Dinner today was spaghetti and vegan meatballs with salad. I save a bit of money by making my own pasta sauce because it is cheaper. I buy a few large cans of crushed organic tomatoes on sale for $3.99 each and use that as my sauce base. A jar of organic pasta sauce can be anywhere from $5-10 depending on the store or brand. Bonus, I don’t add sugar to our homemade sauce. Check the label on your pasta sauce, there is a good chance that there is sugar in the ingredients. As a nutritionist, I'm always looking for ways to make our meals more nutritious and cut down on added sugars. 

Day 6

Today I picked up our organic CSA (Community Supported Agriculture). For those of you who don't know what this is... we subsribe to a foodshare that we pick up locally once a week and it is full of so much delicious produce. The shares are completely customizable and can include other items such as eggs, wraps, oils, even fair trade chocolate. We selected a large share and add on extra fruit and extra "lunch" items (like cucumbers, peppers, avocados). We still need to buy produce throughout the week since we eat a whole lot of it but the CSA saves us lots of money. Organic produce can get marked up quite a bit in the grocery store and although our share isn't local only (that is an option), a lot of it is grown close to home so it's nice to know it is fresh and great quality. I often post pictures of our share on instagram @amandahiltonrhn and facebook cert.holisticnutritionist if you want to check out what we get each week. 

I also had to pick up a few groceries today that we were out of or running low on. We run our budget weekly from Tuesay to Monday because that is what works best for our pay periods. So today's grocery pick up and CSA order will be the start of this weeks grocery budget. Groceries were $150 and CSA was $65. Our new weekly budget for groceries is $400. 

While I was out getting groceries, I stopped at Starbucks for a coffee which I got for FREE because I had accumulated 150 stars. Sadly, this also means in the past I spent way too much money on drinks there because stars are earned when you spend money. 

Tomorrow I will be meal planning for the next week and hopefully, I'll be able to stay within the remaining budget. 

Total spent for two days: $200 vet, $150 groceries, $65 CSA =$415
Total saved for two days: $14 -a free bag of coffee, $2 or more on diy pasta sauce, $7 for Starbucks latte, and at least $15 weekly saved from buying through the CSA = $38

Budget and Money Saving Journey Day 4

Budget and Money Saving Journey
Day 4

July 18, 2022

Amanda Hilton R.H.N.

In the morning, my littlest and I met my mom at a local organic farm for some FREE family friendly fun. Little one got to jump on a giant tractor bouncy, did some colouring, had a delicious gluten free vegan s'more cookie and some yummy lemonade. I splurged on some amazing gluten free vegan cranberry chocolate chip scones too, yum! It’s hard to find gluten free vegan treats in our area so I usually take advantage when I do.

In the afternoon, the boys went to a ball game that we had FREE tickets for. Youngest was excited that he caught a few fly balls and got to run the bases during the game. He is preparing himself for his first Blue Jay’s game next month. They also got FREE freezies for returning the  foul balls.

Dinner was supposed to be sweet potato, spinach, and black bean enchiladas but I forgot to add more sweet potatoes to my shopping list. I’m getting majorly forgetful, I’m blaming it on perimenopause, lol. I subbed in regular organic potatoes for the sweet potatoes and they were just as yummy, just a little less nutritious. Check out this delicious meal @amandahiltonrhn or cert.holisticnutritionist

Made a BIG purchase today. My daughter needed a new laptop for University so I ordered her a MacBook Air through my RBC app. I get 2x the RBC rewards which I can use to pay back my balance. This would normally not be within our budget but because we put money in an RESP, we can use that to pay it back.

I finalized our new budget today. It was overwhelming going through months of statements to categorize all our spending. Overwhelming but also eye opening. We figured out some areas where we can spend less and save more. In the end I was able to balance out with a bit of help from a free budget calculator (my money coach). Since July is half over, we are starting the new budget in August. I’m a bit excited to get back on track.

Total Spent: $30 (cookie, lemonade, and scones) + $2000 (Macbook)
Total Saved: $2000 by using the RESP to pay for the computer + 4000 RBC points which equals $40.
Freebies: Entertainment for the kids: baseball game, freezies, bouncy castle, crafts and colouring.

I love when we can find ways to keep the kids entertained at a low cost or even free in a society where everything is increasingly getting more expensive.

Setting up the budget was stressful and I’m super happy it's done. Let’s hope we can stick to it now!

How is your budgeting coming along? 

Budget and Money Saving Journey Day 3

Budget and Money Saving Journey
Day 3 

July 17, 2022

Amanda Hilton R.H.N.

* Day 3 of working on our budget. Today I printed off our bank transactions so I can make a spread sheet of our spending habits over the last serveral months. I used my daughters markers to colour code and highlite each purchase so it is easier for me to add them up and categorize them. 

* I spent some time cleaning and organizing the kids’ rooms. I gathered some clothes that no longer fit them in hope to sell on a Buy and Sell group then will put that money towards back to school shopping. In the process, I realized my youngest daughter is influenced by my oldest daughter in that they both have waaayyy too many clothes!

* Dinner tonight was tofu, green beans with almonds, and rainbow carrot coins. I also made zucchini ravioli for my little (it is her fav and I’ve been promising her I would make it for a week now and I still have lots of zucchini to use up). One package of tofu is usually only enough for the four kids so hubby and I had veggie patties. I buy a couple of family sizes boxes when they are on sale at Costco for tofu night or when my oldest is looking for a quick lunch option. We have a chest freezer in the garage that comes in handy when I can stock up on Costco bulk sales. I had roasted potatoes on my meal plan for tonight but as I was plating dinner I realized that I totally forgot to make them. Doh!

* I ended my night with a glass of red wine because it was open and I’m all about no-waste right now. And to be honest, it was needed after looking at our bank statements!

* We had some money left in our entertainment envelope from our previous budget so the kids went to Flying Squirrel to burn some energy. We are trying to keep them busy and entertained through the summer break which is super difficult when you are also trying to budget. Everything is so expensive right now, especially when there are 6 of us to entertain. 

* My oldest daughter, who has our old car right now, is hoping to buy a new one either at the end of the year or when her current one no longer runs. So, today, I opened a high interest savings account for her to save some of her hard-earned money. I’m really grateful that she is learning about the importance of saving money now. I'm also so grateful that we were smart enough to start an education savings for the kids when they were young. Having loads of debt fresh out of University is an awful feeling and I'm glad we will be able to relieve the kids of some of that (not all since University is EXPENSIVE and increases every year!). 

Total spent today: $41.81 at flying squirrel that we had available in cash from our previous budget
Total saved: my sanity by getting the kids out of the house for a bit and hopefully I can sell some kids clothes to make a bit of money. 

Not a super awesome "saving" day but I feel a bit better getting the savings account open for my daughter and that I didn't let that wine go to waste, so we'll say it was a great day! Hope it was a great day for everyone else. xoxo

Budget and Money Saving Journey Day 2

Budget and Money Saving Journey
Day 2

July 16, 2022

Amanda Hilton R.H.N.

This morning while sipping my latte (which I made at home cause daily Starbucks isn't in the budget), I made a meal plan and grocery list of a few things I need to pick up at the store. I usually shop at Fortinos because they have a great selection of gluten free, natural food products and organic produce plus I get PC points that I can put towards getting additional groceries. I checked out my PC points offers before making my meal plan so I can max out my points.

I took my list to Goodness Me to grab some great prices on produce. Love that all of their produce is organic and they often have great sale prices on quality food. 

I also went to Fortinos were I checked off the rest of my list and earned 4000 points from my purchase.

When I got home, I used the checkout 51 app to claim a $1.50 coupon and used eclipsa app for an additional $0.75. It's not much but as the small amounts add up... 

This weeks meal plan:

Friday: leftovers (I used the extra stuffed pepper filling from the previous day and added it on top of baked sweet potatoes and topped them with a bit of vegan cheese).

Saturday: tofu, roasted potatoes, green beans and carrot coins

Sunday: sweet potato, black bean, and spinach enchiladas

Monday: gluten free spaghetti with vegan meatballs and side salad

Tuesday: Beyond burgers with kale salad

Wednesday: rice wrap spring rolls

Thursday: buddha bowls

I'll try to post meal picks on instagram @amandahiltonrhn and facebook Amanda Hilton RHN incase anyone needs some inspiration. 

I spent just under $150 to get the essentials we needed for this weeks’ meals plus we will get our organic CSA produce on Tuesday which is $71. I still have some staples in the pantry (spaghetti, noodles, rice...) so I saved a bit on that.
 I’m still working on the new budget but the grocery allowance for the old budget was $525 weekly so I’m doing well so far staying within that budget.

Total Spent $217.46 (groceries + CSA)
Total saved $2.25 + not needing to buy some of the staples I had on hand. 

Overall, a good second day of budgeting. Hope everyone else had a great day!

Day One of Our Budgeting and Money Saving Journey

Budget and Money Saving Journey
Day One

July 15, 2022

Amanda Hilton R.H.N.

Let me introduce myself, I’m a nutritionist @amandahiltonrhn, student, mother of four humans and mom to 5 fur-babies. We have 6 people in our family plus 2 dogs, a cat, and 2 guinea pigs. That is one full house! Currently we are living off of one income. How do we even manage? 

Even more challenging, we have several food restrictions to accommodate. We are vegetarians by choice and we also choose to eat whole clean foods which are mostly organic. 4 out of 6 of us eat gluten free and dairy free (we eat some goat or sheep cheese and a bit of goat yoghurt so, we are basically cow-dairy free) and the cost of groceries is skyrocketing right now. Even the price of pet food has increased aaannnddd... we have an extra-large breed pup that eats 8 cups of food per day! 

There are a few corners that I already cut to help us save money like making my own body soap (picture in post) and rarely eating out, since it is very challenging with our food sensitivities. I’m on a mission to try to save even more money by budgeting and tweeking wherever possible. 

In the fall, we have one child going to University and I'm hoping our monthly RESP deposits will help fund that. Also, we have an 8-year-old who has big sports asperations. He plays baseball in the summer and hockey in the winter. Anyone who has children in sports knows, it's NOT cheap! These are just a few of the added expenses we face when creating a budget. 

I'm hoping by writing about my journey to save some money, I can keep myself accountable and possible help other people with a few tidbits that I come across. Here is how the first day went…

Day 1

Today I cleaned out the fridge and pantry to take inventory of what I have and what needs to be used up.

* We have an abundance of organic zucchini from our local organic CSA so I made some gluten free vegan zucchini muffins.

* We also had a lot of bell peppers so I prepared vegan stuffed peppers for dinner. I usually use rice when making stuffed peppers but I bought a giant bag of organic quinoa when it was on sale at Costco so I used some of that instead. Bonus, I made extra stuffed pepper filling so I'll have enough for leftovers tomorrow. 

* I also made some vegetable broth with some veggie scraps that I freeze when I’m doing dinner preps (broccoli stems, carrot peels, cauliflower stems, garlic scapes, etc.). I now have two large mason jars ready for when I need them and I essentially saved myself $8-10 (cost of two organic vegetable broth cartons).

* Signed the kids up for a FREE summer reading program where they have a chance to win weekly prizes and a grand prize at the end of the summer cause who doesn't love prizes?!?!

* I think an important part of saving money is budgeting. We have set up a budget with money in envelopes in the past but we have strayed a bit from it and need to get back on course. Today I started looking over our spending so I can redo the budget and get us back on track.

Total Money Spent Today = $0
Total Money Saved Today = $8-10

At the end of the day, I felt like I had accomplished a little something and am heading in the right direction. 
Do you have any money saving tips to share? 

An Organic Apple A Day...

Amanda Hilton

April 25, 2022

Have you ever heard the saying “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”? Well, not if they are conventionally grown… nearly half of the synthetic chemicals found in conventionally grown apples are either neurotoxic or carcinogenic. I think it is about time to change that old saying to “an organic apple a day…”.

Dirty Dozen
Conventionally grown apples appear as number five on the EWG (Environmental Working Group) Dirty Dozen list. This is a list that ranks twelve of the most heavily contaminated conventionally grown fruits and vegetables according to the amount of synthetic chemicals found in them. For a complete list of the EWG’s Dirty Dozen, check out my previous post, The Low-Down on Organic

Apples are sprayed with chemicals to keep pests away and since one of the most nutritious parts of the apple is the skin, eating organic apples helps keep those chemicals out of our bodies. If you do eat conventional, I recommend washing and peeling the apple first but know that you are missing out on the beneficial fibre when discarding the skin.

Nutritional Highlights
Apples are full of nutrients. They contain fibre, vitamin C, vitamin A and some B vitamins. There are also many minerals in apples; potassium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and iron. Even if they haven’t actually been proven to keep the doctor away, apples are a fantastic nutrient dense food to add to your daily diet.

The Apple Orchard
Every year, in September, we visit the apple orchard to stock up on apples. Apples go very quickly in our house. One of the things the kids love best about going to the orchard is sampling the different kinds of apples. Did you know, there are over 7000 varieties of apples?! A few years ago we stumbled on one of our new favourites, the Silken apple (sadly, we can only seem to find it at the orchard so we don’t get to enjoy them year round). Do a bit of research and see if there are any organic apple orchards in your area. You may have to dig a bit deeper and make some phone calls. Some orchards might grow using organic methods but are not certified organic because of the hefty price tag that comes with certification. 

Apples are so easy to grab when on the go, can quickly be cut into slices for little ones and taste amazing with nut butters. I will often dice apples to add to my oatmeal or to put in a salad. If I have a lot of apples or some with lots of bruises, I make applesauce with just cooked apples and cinnamon (I don’t add sugar because we find the apples sweet enough).

The kids and I love to make apple “donuts” together as a healthy snack. It is a great way to get the kids to help out and to give them control over adding healthy snack options to their diets.

Apple Donuts
*Apples, sliced into ½” thick rounds
*Nut butter, yoghurt or fruit preserve
*Topping of your choice
       _- We use: raw sunflower seeds, pepitas, unsweetened shredded coconut, Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips, chopped walnuts, blueberries, raisins, chia seeds, or anything else we can find that will add yumminess to our donuts. 

1. Cut a circle in the middle of the apple slices, removing the seeds.
2. Spread “icing” of choice (nut butter, yoghurt, fruit preserve) on one side of each apple round.
3. Top with your favourite toppings.


Let me know if you try this delicious snack and if you’ve tried any other topping or spreads. I’m always willing to try new flavours!

If you are looking to add more healthy snacks and meals to your diet, send me a message, I would love to connect and set up a consultation to help you reach your health goals!

Fuzzless Peaches and Fuzzy Nectarines

Amanda Hilton

April 19, 2022

Each year the EWG (Environmental Working Group) releases their Dirty Dozen list. This is a list of 12 fruits and vegetables that have the highest concentration of synthetic chemicals due to conventional growing practices. Check out my previous post for the full list at

Numbers Four and Eight 

Number four on the Dirty Dozen list is nectarines and number eight is peaches. I’m going to combine these two tasty fruits into one blog post because they are very closely related and can often be used interchangeably. Nectarines are fuzzless peaches, or peaches are fuzzy nectarines, they are the same species and occasionally, peach trees may produce nectarines and vice versa. 

Conventionally Grown

Both nectarines and peaches have a sweet flavour and scent. This makes them irresistible to insects. Conventionally grown, these fruits are heavily sprayed with pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides. They are also often sprayed after being packed into boxes for shipping. Some peaches are picked before they are even ripe and are placed in shipping fridges to make them last longer. This is why you can find still-hard peaches at the grocery store that may never ripen. These fruits have a delicate skin which bruises easily and is very absorptive, so they tend to retain the synthetic chemicals used during conventional growing. 

Nutritional Highlights 

Peaches and nectarines are both good sources of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. They are delicious fresh or cooked and are best when purchased tree-ripened in the summer months. 

Local Peaches

Each year, where we live, we have a local peach festival and one of the main attractions is the peach sundae. This is vanilla ice cream topped with whipped cream and sliced local peaches. It is divine! Due to food intolerances, we can no longer enjoy this once-a-year treat, so we purchase some local organic peaches and make our own dairy free version with coconut or cashew ice cream. It is just as good, if not better since I know we aren’t going to have upset digestive systems afterwards or be bogged down with synthetic chemicals. 


Peaches-n-cream oatmeal

⅓ cup gluten free steel cut oats 

1 medium ripe banana, mashed

½ cup dairy-free milk (I use unsweetened almond milk)

1 organic peach, diced

Coconut yogurt

In a small saucepan, combine the oats, mashed banana and milk. Simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the milk has been absorbed and the oats are soft (about 10-12 min). Spoon into a bowl and top with diced peaches and a dollop of coconut yogurt. 

Counting Down the Dirty Dozen

So far I’ve reviewed the first four items plus number eight of the EWG’s Dirty Dozen list. Check out my previous posts if you missed numbers one to three Continue following along as I go through the remaining seven fruits and vegetables and hopefully you get some insight as to why these 12 chemical laden conventionally grown fruits and veggies might be better for you when bought organic. Send me a message at if you would like to learn more ways to add organic produce to your diet. I would love to set up a consultation to discuss your health goals! 

Got Kale? Try This Organic Superfood

Got Kale? Try This Organic Superfood

Amanda Hilton

March 30, 2022

Today, I’m going to discuss Kale, Collards and Mustard Greens, third on the EWG’s Dirty Dozen list. If you aren’t familiar with the Dirty Dozen list, check out my previous blog posts for more info.

Dark leafy greens are probably the richest in nutrients of any food in the vegetable kingdom. The greener the better. These veggies are high in vitamins A and C as well as magnesium, potassium and calcium (kale has even more calcium than a glass of milk!). They are also abundant in folic acid, which helps make healthy red blood cells.

Most dark green, leafy veggies, will take nitrogen from the soil into its tissues. In excess (as you find in chemical fertilizers), these compounds can form carcinogenic (cancer-forming) nitrosamines in the intestines. Under organic cultivation, the soil is fertilized with compost rather than flooded with chemical nitrogen. Compost is buffered by the action of microorganisms and delivers only the amount of nitrogen the plants need for their health. Chemicals are also sprayed on leafy green vegetables and tend to remain there even after harvest. Because we consume the leafy part, this can be even more of a concern and reason to switch to organic.

Mustard greens are a great addition to a salad, soup, or stir-fry. And big collard leaves are great as wraps filled with hummus and veggies, or beans, rice and veggies. My favourite out of the three powerhouse greens is, kale. We always have kale in our fridge and we even grow it in our garden during the summer (very easy to grow even without a green thumb!). You can add kale to just about anything… soups, salads, rice dishes, stir-fry, pizza, noodles, pasta… the list goes on. My favourite way to incorporate its goodness, along with other amazing nutrient-rich foods, is in a Kale and Cabbage Salad.


Kale and Cabbage Salad

4 cups chopped kale
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup shredded red cabbage
½ cup shredded carrots
¼ cup raw sunflower seeds
¼ cup hemp hearts

¼ cup flax oil or olive oil
2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp tamari sauce (gluten free soy sauce)
2 tsp dijon mustard
½ tsp Herbamare

Drizzle kale with olive oil and massage for 5 min.
Add remaining ingredients and top with dressing mix.

Kale, Collards, and Mustard Greens are number three on the EWG's Dirty Dozen list, follow along with my blog as I chat about the other 12 fruits and veggies that contain high amounts of synthetic chemicals. Also, check out my instagram page @amandahiltonrhn for posts about our local organic community foodshare and for healthy organic meal ideas. Shoot me a message if you would like to learn more ways to add organic vegetables to your diet. I would love to set up a consultation to discuss your health goals! 

Orgainc Spinach - A Green Superfood!

Organic Spinach - A Green Superfood!

Amanda Hilton

March 17, 2022

Each year, the EWG (Environmental Working Group), produces a list of 12 fruits and vegetables (The Dirty Dozen) with the highest concentration of chemicals when grown conventionally, meaning with use of synthetic chemicals or GMO’s (genetically modified organisms). It can be difficult to digest the copious amounts of information out there about choosing organic foods and with the cost of groceries steadily rising, choosing organic can get expensive. As a nutritionist, I generally recommend, when my clients are trying to make the switch to healthier, more nutritious foods, that they start by purchasing the Dirty Dozen organic. A small step like this can have a big impact on a person’s health while still being gentle on the pocket. See my previous post The Low-Down on Organic for the full 2022 list of Dirty Dozen fruits and veggies.


After strawberries, the second most contaminated member of the EWG’s Dirty Dozen is Spinach. This leafy green vegetable is known as a heavy feeder - it absorbs an excessive amount of whatever is in the soil - whether that is nutrients or synthetic chemicals from pesticides and fertilizers. This is a great quality, if the spinach is grown in organic soil. The quick growing plant will be full of all the necessary minerals, making it a mega nutritious food. Grown conventionally, the spinach will leach chemicals from the soil and since pesticides are sprayed on the leafy part of the plant, which is what we consume, it has the potential to be even more harmful.

Grow Your Own

Growing your own vegetables is always a great way to cut down on the cost of groceries and to ensure you are getting the maximum amount of nutrients from organic soil without the use of synthetic chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Spinach is fairly easy to grow and it grows quickly during warmer months. If space is an issue, spinach can be grown in a pot and still thrive.

Nutritional Highlights

Spinach truly is a “superfood”. This dark leafy green vegetable has an astonishing amount of minerals (like magnesium, calcium, and potassium), vitamins (such as vitamins A, B6, and C) and fiber. Spinach is also rich in iron and Vitamin K, which helps direct calcium to your bones. Adding this superfood to your diet each day can have a great impact on your overall health.


I pretty much throw spinach in everything. I put it on our diy pizzas, in soups, currys, salads, you name it. One of the quickest and easiest ways I get my daily greens intake is my morning smoothie.

2 good-sized handfuls of spinach
1 banana
1 cup unsweetened dairy-free milk
½-1 scoop Vega vanilla protein powder
1 tbsp flaxseed
A few ice cubes

Blend and enjoy!

Dirty Dozen

Spinach is number two on the EWG's Dirty Dozen list, follow along with my blog as I chat about the other 12 fruits and veggies that contain high amounts of synthetic chemicals. Also, check out my instagram page @amandahiltonrhn for posts about our local organic community foodshare and for healthy organic meal ideas.

Organic Strawberries vs. Conventionally Grown Strawberries

Dirty Dozen #1: Strawberries

Amanda Hilton

March 19, 2022

Each year, the EWG (Environmental Working Group), produces a list of 12 fruits and vegetables (The Dirty Dozen) that contain the highest concentration of chemicals when grown conventionally, meaning with use of synthetic chemicals or GMO’s (genetically modified organisms). It can be difficult to digest the copious amounts of information out there about choosing organic foods and with the cost of groceries steadily rising, choosing organic can get expensive. As a nutritionist, I generally recommend when my clients are trying to make the switch to healthier, more nutritious foods, that they start by purchasing organic produce from the Dirty Dozen list. A small step like this can have a big impact on a person’s health while still being gentle on their pockets. See my previous post The Low-Down on Orgainic  for the full 2022 list of the Dirty Dozen.


The first item on the 2022 Dirty Dozen list is strawberries. These deliciously sweet berries grow close to the soil and their sweetness is very attractive to pests so it is clear why this berry usually pulls in at number one on the list, year after year. Large amounts of pesticides are used on conventionally grown strawberries to keep bugs away from spoiling the fruit. Because strawberries grow so close to the ground, there are plenty of pests with easy access and the berries will basically sit in the soil marinating in chemicals while they ripen.

If you like to snack on these berries all year round then you may be taking in even more chemicals. Large companies that grow conventional strawberries that are being shipped internationally, will use more chemicals so that customers don’t receive a container of smooshed or unripe strawberries that will be difficult to sell. Choosing to pick strawberries locally can be a better option since an extra dose of chemicals is not needed for shipping and the fruit is often tastier as they are picked at their ripest.

Top Dollar

Recently, I have switched from buying “fresh” organic strawberries to purchasing them frozen. At a whopping $10 for a container that my family of six will go through easily in 2 days, it just wasn’t feasible. For now, I’ll buy an extra large Costco size bag of organic frozen strawberry slices that the kids love cause they taste like “candy”. Frozen berries are picked when they are ripe and juicy, then flash frozen to retain their nutrients. In June, strawberry season, the kids and I will make a day of hitting the strawberry fields and picking a bunch to wash and freeze for the next off-season strawberry inflation.

Nutritional Hightlights

Not only are strawberries super tasty and sweet but they have an added boost of fiber and vitamin C. Dietary fiber can aid with digestion and prevent constipation while vitamin C supports the immune system helping to prevent common cold and flu.


Our children will eat strawberries fresh or frozen just the way they are, but another way they like to indulge on these sweet berries is with some Berry "Nice" Cream:

1 cup frozen strawberries
1 banana, frozen

Combine in a blender until smooth and creamy.
Divide into dessert bowls and add delicious toppings (unsweetened shredded coconut, dairy-free mini chocolate chips, chopped walnuts, drizzled almond butter - these are just a few of our favs)


Dirty Dozen

Strawberries are number one on the EWG's Dirty Dozen list, follow along with my blog as I chat about the other 12 fruits and veggies that contain high amounts of synthetic chemicals. Also, check out my instagram page @amandahiltonrhn for posts about our local organic community foodshare and for healthy organic meal ideas.

The Low-Down on Organic

The Low-Down on Organic

Amanda Hilton

March 11, 2022

Anyone who has stepped foot in a supermarket knows that organic foods are becoming more readily available for consumer purchase. But many consumers are still unsure of the organic movement and whether it’s really worth the extra cost in the long run. After doing a slew of research myself, I chose to switch my family to a mainly organic diet 5 years ago. I’m not going to lecture you on all the horrible results I discovered about pesticides, herbicides, hormones, chemicals and antibiotics because frankly we all know how bad they are. My hope is to provide you with some info about how you too can make the switch to choosing more organic foods so that your family can get the most benefit out of what they eat.

EWG list

Each year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) creates a list of the twelve dirtiest foods and the cleanest fifteen. The “Dirty Dozen” are the twelve foods with the highest amount of pesticide residue and the “Clean Fifteen” have the least amount of pesticides (these are often foods with an outer skin that is removed before eating). Since the cost of organic produce can often be more expensive than conventional produce, a great way to start your journey to reduce chemical consumption is to buy only the Dirty Dozen organic and the Clean Fifteen conventional. The EWG list for 2021 is: (drum roll please!)

Dirty Dozen                                                            Clean Fifteen

1. Strawberries                                                              1. Avocados

2. Spinach                                                                      2. Sweet Corn

3. Kale, collard and mustard greens                          3. Pineapple

4. Nectarines                                                                 4. Onions

5. Apples                                                                        5. Papaya

6. Grapes                                                                        6. Sweet Peas, frozen

7. Cherries                                                                      7. Eggplant

8. Peaches                                                                      8. Asparagus

9. Pears                                                                          9. Broccoli

10. Bell and hot peppers                                             10. Cabbage

11. Celery                                                                       11. Kiwi

12. Tomatoes                                                                12. Cauliflower

                                                                                       13. Mushrooms

                                                                             14. Honeydew melon

                                                                              15. Cantaloupe

Grow Your Own

If the cost of organic produce just blows your mind, you could try growing your own fruits and veggies. Setting up a small garden in your backyard or at a local community garden and planting organic seeds in organic soil is a great way to cut down on the cost of eating clean. If you are having a hard time finding a source for purchasing organic seeds, Seeds of Diversity Canada has a resource list that contains a long list of mail order sources of heritage and organic seeds. If you're thinking, “I don’t have a clue about planting vegetables'', put your worries to rest, most seed packets come with planting directions printed on the package back, detailing best planting dates, the depth at which to bury the seeds, and the number of days from planting to first harvest. Keep in mind that your garden is similar to having children, you can’t just leave it to fend for itself and expect it to grow in abundance. Gardens need tender loving care. Daily watering and grooming are essential but all the hard work will pay off with the fruits of your labour.

Local CSA

If you are already writing off the idea of having an organic garden, because you are lacking the space or a green thumb, no worries, there are many Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) associations that offer organic produce at a great cost. Not only will you be supporting local farmers who strive to grow organic only, but you will be benefiting your family’s health too. As a Nutritionist and someone who loves trying new recipes, what I like about getting my CSA food share each week is the variety. Sometimes we get new foods that we haven’t tried (like when we got the yellow watermelon that my daughter fell in love with) or foods that we should be eating more of because of their health benefits but I would forget to buy at the grocery store since it wasn’t on my menu list (hello beets!! They make the best juice!). A quick google search will bring up your local CSA directory and you can choose which one best suits your family.

Animals Are People Too

If there is only one thing you are prepared to do to make the move to organic, it should be to consume organic animal products. Not only will you help your family to avoid nasty antibiotics and hormones that are sometimes added to animal products but, organic regulations have standards for animal care. Organic eggs come from chickens who are fed a diet of organic chicken feed without other animal by-products, are free-range (have access to the outdoors), and are not given antibiotics. Organic cattle are also prohibited from antibiotics and hormones as preventative treatment and are not permitted animal by-products in their feed, 30% of their dry matter feed comes from pasture grazing. Yes, organic milk, eggs, cheese and meat are more expensive to purchase but this is because it also costs the farmers more to care for and feed their animals. To save a bit of money while still adhering to an organic diet, you could try going meatless several times a week.

Although eating organic can cost a bit more, it can profoundly affect your long-term health. I always recommend that infants consume organic baby foods as they are more sensitive to pesticides because they have immature nervous and immune systems. If you need help transitioning to a clean organic diet for you and your family, send me a message at to set up a consultation so I can help you reach your health goals. Also, check out my posts showing our bountiful CSA weekly share @amandahiltonrhn.

Food Intolerances and Birthday Parties

Food Intolerances and Birthday Parties

Amanda Hilton

March 12, 2022

Birthday parties are tough for anyone with allergies or food intolerance. Due to food sensitivities and allergies, my children and I follow a gluten free, dairy free and low sugar diet and we are also vegetarians by choice. So, when we are invited to a birthday party, which happens often when you have four children, we need to make sure we are prepared.

Most hosts will have fruit and veggie plates available for snacking, which is great since my children are not at all picky when it comes to produce. But once the hot cheesy pizza hits the table or when it is time to serve up the cake/cupcakes, my children sometimes feel a bit isolated.

I leave it up to my teenage daughter to attend gatherings with friends and choose what foods she wants to put in her body. She is aware of what the consequences are if she eats something that her digestive system does not tolerate well. My youngest daughter on the other hand is too young to even really understand our limitations. And my youngest son is way too smart for his own good. He knows to ask if something is gluten free or dairy free.

Awkward But Necessary

To ensure that we are fully prepared before we go to birthday parties, I bake gluten free dairy free cupcakes and make gluten free, dairy free pizza (we do eat some goat and sheep cheese, which is what I often use for pizza) for us to bring with us to birthday parties. Do I feel incredibly awkward bringing my own food to parties?….YES, but I would rather feel that then have my children feel left out when all the other children are munching on pizza and cake and they wonder why they have nothing but broccoli.

School Days

Having a school aged child with food sensitivities is even more difficult. Special occasion days at school (Christmas, Easter, Halloween, etc.) mean that special treats can be brought in for the class to share. This is tough for my little guy! I ALWAYS make sure I send something, since once at the beginning of his kindergarten year, when it wasn’t our allotted snack day, my son had to go without because no one brought fruit or veggies. Everything had dairy and/or gluten. No worries, he had his lunch to fill his belly, but he didn’t feel so great about being left out amongst a room full of 5/6-year-olds.

Food allergies and sensitivities are a common struggle for many families. We live in a society where food is overly processed and what we once may have thought was a healthy snack (yogurt tubes, bear paws, gold fish, etc.) is really causing digestive distress in children’s little bodies. Food allergies can be severe which may cause anaphylactic shock and allergy testing is done to determine the severity. But, some foods may have a less severe effect on the body but still cause unpleasant symptoms such as eczema, gas, bloating, loose stools, constipation, nausea, behavioural disorders, and sleep disturbance…just to name a few. If you need help adjusting your child's diet or your own, due to food sensitivity or intolerance, contact me at to arrange a consultation to discuss the road to digestive recovery.

How Do I Get My Children to Eat Veggies??

How Do I Get My Children to Eat Veggies??

Amanda Hilton

March 9, 2022

How do I get my children to eat vegetables? Let me just start by saying….it isn’t easy! Like most things parenting, getting your children to eat vegetables can be a daunting task. It is something that is best if started early in life for it to be less difficult for you and your child but it is not too late to start now. I’m going to share with you my tried and tested ways that will help you get your children to eat their vegetables.

When I had my oldest daughter, my life was very different from what it is now. I was a single mother, a mature student, working part-time, and knew very little about nutrition. Yes, I started my daughter out on rice cereal and veggies like you read in all the baby books, but from there…convenience became key for this very busy mom. We relied on granola bars, waffles, hash browns, canned beans in sauce, grilled cheese, and pasta (lots of pasta). As time went on, our family grew and I learned A LOT about nutrition and parenting.

Seventeen years later and many years of school, research and trial-and-error as a Registered Holistic Nutritionist and now mom of four children, this is what I’ve learned; starting children out on vegetables and not offering up all the processed junk, is KEY; being prepared is a lifesaver; getting the little ones to help can ACTUALLY be helpful and; there are sooooo many ways to sneak veggies into foods kids love.

Start at the beginning

Do my children always eat their veggies without a fight? Absolutely not! Dinner is challenging. But they do eat their vegetables beca
use they know this is what they get, and they do not want to go hungry. Clients have said things like, “my four-year old won’t eat anything but [insert unhealthy food your child is currently obsessed with], what do I do?” Well, to start, you stop buying that food. You buy the food, you make the healthy choices and your child will have no choice but to follow suit. Starting little ones out on fresh organic produce without adding sugary sauces or condiments can help them to secure a taste and liking for a variety of vegetables. As they grow (which they do too quickly), continue to offer all sorts of vegetables, even ones that you may not appreciate. In our house, I’m not a big tomato fan but my youngest son will eat a pint of cherry tomatoes a day if I allow it. Variety is so important also, limiting sugar and processed foods is essential. Children don’t need added sugar in their diet and if you don’t give it to them at a young age, they won’t rely on it as they get older. Reserve “dessert” items for special occasions like birthdays.

Be prepared

I know we are all pressed for time these days with work, overtime, extra curricular activities, and everything in between but taking a bit of extra time on the weekend or an evening when you are not overbooked, to plan out and prepare meals, can be super helpful. Having a bunch of veggies already cut up or a big pot of soup made, can really cut down on lunch prep time. As for dinner, meal prepping is super important when it comes to healthy veggie-rich dinners. Taking an hour on the weekend after the kids are in bed and while you are having your cup of tea (or wine, depending on how your week has gone), you can make a meal plan for the week and even prep some of the food you need. This way, you are prepared for each dinner and not relying on take-away or frozen pizza.

Helping hand

Getting your little ones (big ones too!) to help out at the grocery store and in the kitchen can actually be helpful (sometimes). Allowing your child to choose a new vegetable while at the grocery store, if you are brave enough to shop with a cart full of kids, can be beneficial to getting them to try new foods. At home, having your youngster sitting or standing next to you, safely, to help with stirring and pouring can make them feel important and may give them incentive to try the end product knowing that they helped make it. Sometimes, my oldest child will make dinner all by herself and she loves it because she feels important. When the younger ones help, be prepared for a bit more clean up afterwards. You can use that time to teach them about tidying up and make it fun. Helping hands in the kitchen does require a bit of patience but the kids will be pros in no time and you will be able to sit back and let them make dinner for you!

Sneaky, sneaky

There are loads of books and info online that give you recipes to sneak food into your child’s meals. Butternut squash can be put into grilled cheese, veggies like zucchini, broccoli and cauliflower can be pureed into sauces for pasta, avocado (which is actually a fruit, but super healthy nonetheless) can be mixed into low sugar brownies or breakfast muffins. Do a bit of research and see what you can mix your veggies into so that your children are getting all that they need. Raw veggies are very important for proper digestion so continue to offer those up too. Fun food presentation or a side of hummus for dipping can also be helpful to get those veggies in their tummies.

Sometimes we need a bit of help and as with most things, results won’t happen overnight. But you too can get your children to eat their veggies (and even enjoy them too!). Send me a message at to set up a consultation so I can help you with meal planning or with any other health goals you may have for you and your children. 


What Is The White Stuff On An Orange?

What Is The White Stuff On An Orange?

Amanda Hilton

March 7, 2022

A morning in our house is never uneventful. Just this morning, as my son was eating his breakfast, he turned to me and said in disgust, “what is this white stuff on my orange?” Usually, I would spend a good part of my morning removing all the white peel skin from his orange before I dare put it on his plate, but on this particular day, his dad made breakfast.

I took this as the perfect opportunity to pipe up in my best nutritionist voice “that’s the pith.” I had hoped to follow it up with a list of all the wonderful benefits of keeping this “white stuff” on the orange while eating it but instantly, 3 sets of eyes shot in my direction with looks of confusion. First my husband, “the what? Is that what it’s called?” followed by my son, “the piss?”, and then his little sister parroted, “the PISS!”

“NO, NO, the pith!” I say, and of course my daughter developmentally can’t get out the “th” sound yet so she just keeps saying “the piss, my orange has piss on it”. UURRGG! Lucky for me, neither my son or daughter know the meaning of their new word so it turns out to be pretty harmless, for now.

After several attempts at correcting them, I merely throw my arms up and walk away. Later that day, I’m telling my oldest daughter about the breakfast incident and she gives me a confused look too. She says, “is that what it’s really called?”

Well now, after two people have called me out on my orange peel “white stuff” word, I begin to wonder if that is really what it is called. What if I opened a can of worms needlessly? Was my attempt to show my fruit knowledge actually an error on my part? Are my kids running around with “piss” on their oranges now, for nothing?

Now my imposter syndrome has been triggered and my only defence is to hit the books. I do my research and yes! I’m not a phoney, it IS called the pith! So, two things to end my chat about the pith of the orange:

1. Imposter Syndrome is real! I can not tell you how many times I have called myself out on something that I KNOW is true but forced myself to believe otherwise.

2. The pith of an orange, even though disgusting to children, is actually beneficial. It contains as much vitamin C as the sweet fruit itself and is full of fibre, calcium, and immune-boosting flavonoids. So, try to keep some of that goodness on your next deliciously juicy orange.

I never actually got to share that second tidbit of information with my children. I’m kind of actually hoping they totally forget the whole conversation, lol. Check out my instagram @amandahiltonrhn for more tidbits of information about nutrition and overall health and wellness.

Why I Make Oatmeal A Breakfast Staple

Oatmeal can be a great starter to anyone's day. It is one of my fav go-to morning dishes and always a pantry staple in our home because it can be so versatile and filling. As a nutritionist, some of the things I like best about oats are; they are packed with fibre, magnesium, selenium and protein, which help to keep you full until lunch; they ward off sugar cravings and they promote gut health.

I prefer to simmer steel cut oats and create a deliciously delectable bowl full of nature’s goodness. On the other hand, my 17-year-old daughter who is usually rushed in the morning, is more of an overnight oats kind of person. Anyway you look at it, oats can be an amazingly delicious and nutritious breakfast option. Plus, there are so many options to satisfy anyone’s taste buds.


Often, while my oats are cooking, I will add in coconut milk. This gives the oats extra creaminess and adds a bit of coconut flavour. Bonus: coconut milk contains a lipid called lauric acid which has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties which can support the immune system. Coconut milk also contains MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides) which can be linked to weight loss.

Love an apple pie flavour; add chopped apples and true cinnamon. The apples will add fibre contributing to your fullness factor as well as promoting gut health and cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties as well as many other benefits. Or, if carrot cake is more your jam; add shredded carrots, true cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground ginger. Along with vitamin A and beta-carotene, carrots also contain fibre and calcium. Cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger are loaded with beneficial antioxidants.


The beneficial toppings are endless. Here are a few that I enjoy adding and some of the reasons I love adding them:
  • Raw pumpkin seeds – high in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals
  • Sunflower seeds – contain zinc and selenium, both amazing at supporting the immune system
  • Chia seeds – high in fibre and antioxidants
  • Walnuts – contain antioxidants, protein, vitamin B6 and brain boosting omega-3 fatty acids
  • Unsweetened shredded coconut – loaded with fibre and MCTs which promote heart health and digestion
  • Bananas – high in fibre, potassium, vitamin B6, and vitamin C
  • Raspberries – full of antioxidants, fibre, vitamin C, and folate
  • Blueberries – abundant in antioxidants, fibre, and vitamin C
  • Cinnamon – known for its antiviral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory properties, and supports gut health
  • Raw almond butter – rich in protein, monounsaturated fats, vitamin E, and magnesium
  • Pecans – have monounsaturated fats, magnesium, fibre, and zinc

Breakfast of Champions

If you are feeling too rushed in the mornings or have more than one mouth to feed, another fantastic option is to cook your oats overnight in a slow cooker. Add the oats, water and some of the above add-ins and you will be all set for a simple nutritious breakfast before work or sending the kids to school. Oatmeal can leave you satisfied till lunch time on those busy work days and full bellies are always a bonus when setting children up for a full day of learning.

Check out my Instagram @amandahiltonrhn for some of my favourite oatmeal breakfasts. Let me know how you like to eat your morning oats, I always love to try new combinations!


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Larry Page

CEO of Google

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Steve Jobs

CEO of apple

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