Cheaper healthy food = Thinner fatties?

April 6, 2009 at 11:17 pm Leave a comment

Taco bell sign

I have always thought that one of the main reasons that people are so fat/getting fatter by the minute is because of food. This seems like a ridiculous statement — of course it’s because of the food — but, I’m not just talking about the food itself, I’m talking about the food prices.

A recent study suggests that:

Raising the prices of less healthy foods (e.g., fast foods and sugary products) and lowering the prices of healthier foods (e.g., fruits and vegetables) are associated with lower body weight and lesser likelihood of obesity.

I am, as most people are, on a budget. A shrinking budget at that and whenever I can I cut corners — be it on food or cleaning supplies, etc.

I love fruit and vegetables. I would eat them all the time if I could. But I can’t because of prices — especially fruit. And they wonder why I am eating big bag of chips that cost $1 and lasts a few meals instead of a thing of strawberries for like $4. It’s not economically wise to do that. To stretch my budget, I buy cheap lunch meat, pizzas, etc. Produce is usually limited to carrots, green peppers, celery, bananas, (sometimes apples) — i.e. the ones that are on sale or are generally cheap.

I recently bought a bag of apples (about 5) for like $3. This was the sale price — which was about half the normal price. If I would have spent $3 on “bad” things I could have gotten: a small frozen pizza, a big bag of chips and a 2-liter of soda. There are several other “bad” things I could have exchanged out — all for $1 apiece.

Let’s take a look at fast food. I can go to McDonald’s and get a salad for $5 or get a hamburger and fries for $2. It is the same at most fast food places, salads are one of the most expensive things on the menu. The dollar/value menu (which I usually order off of) is always full of fatty items. Wendy’s is like the only one that has a side salad on the value menu. But, if you wanted to get a full salad at Wendy’s with some protein on it, then that will be $5.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see why people would makes unhealthy choices. It’s more food for your money. It may not be the best choice, but if your choices are either going hungry for the last part of the week because you spent all your money on “healthy” food for the first part of the week or eating the entire week — that’s a no brainer.

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