Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fast Food is Cheaper?


Krakow, 2011

I just can’t help but highlight Mark Bittman’s insightful New York Times article published this Sunday, “Is Junk Food Really Cheaper?”  The short answer is no.  Generally speaking he said, processed foods are more expensive than food cooked at home.  He showed that a meal for 4 persons at McDonald's is more expensive than 2 other meals prepared at home. Two Big Macs, a cheeseburger, 6 pieces of chicken McNuggets, 2 medium and 2 small fries, and 2 medium and 2 small sodas cost $28. Contrast the fast food meal with a home cooked roast chicken and vegetable dinner with salad and milk that cost about $14 or a home made meal of canned rice and beans flavored with bacon, green peppers, and onions along with milk at about $9.

True enough, one has to make wise choices when buying foods on a budget to cook at home.  But the food is not only cheaper as Mark Bittman observed, but it usually tastes better and can be prepared quickly. 

And as Mr. Bittman so aptly pointed out, the argument that persons on a budget need a cheap source of calories is wrong when more than two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese. These Americans need fewer rather than more calories!  Overeating also is costly in medical terms. The more than 40 diseases and conditions that are obesity-related cost an estimated $147 billion per year.  Now that’s expensive!

Check out the New York Times article for a thorough debunking of the myth that fast food is cheaper than real food.

What are your favorite low cost meals that you prepare at home?

Yours in Joy and Health!

Kay

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