Friday, February 19, 2010

How expensive is healthy eating, really?

I was reading something the other day that complained about how much more expensive healthy food is than fast food.  Really?  Have you BEEN to Wendy's lately?  Maybe they mean that healthy fast food is more expensive?  But no, a lot of time people are complaining about the price of produce.  I have to wonder, where are they buying produce, Whole Foods?  7-11?  I will concede that the token bananas at convenience stores are dodgy at best and always overpriced.  Maybe these people are complaining about the price of organic produce?  Or maybe they're buying strawberries in February?  Because that is expensive, unless you get them frozen.  Of course, people decry frozen produce as less healthy.  It's not.  In fact, it's often more nutritious than fresh produce, because it is picked ripe and frozen right away, rather than ripening on its way to the store.  And in December, frozen zucchini is going to be a lot better looking than anything that might be out on the shelf.

I was looking at the ads this week, and honestly, you don't have to spend a lot on fruits and vegetables.  For the price of a six-buck "value" meal (is that really a great value? I made steak, salad, and scalloped potatoes last week for about $2.50 per person), you can get over fifteen pounds of oranges.  Instead of a tiny order of fries from the dollar menu, you could get ten pounds of potatoes.  Instead of spending twenty bucks on a pizza, you could buy twenty pounds of tomatoes, or forty pounds of bananas.  This is all at the same store, which also tends to have the best produce of any of the stores in my area.

I think the real problem is that you actually have to cook in order to eat healthfully.  And planning ahead doesn't hurt, either.  A $.99/lb bunch of broccoli doesn't exactly scream "dinner," but you could make cream of broccoli soup, baked potatoes with cheesy broccoli on top, Chinese stir fry...even just a side of steamed broccoli. 

Our society is being lazy and blaming it on being cheap.

1 comment:

  1. This is what I think too. It's much easier to eat out but unless one is the type to buy only "organic, with the rights of the vegetable protected the entire time and picked with love and kid gloves" it's much cheaper to eat in.


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