I am no longer blogging here at Little Nuances, but I would love for you to join me on my author website www.leewarren.info.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Paying the Price to Eat Healthy

Photo: catsper
“I’ll take the Texas BBQ brisket sandwich from your lunch menu, and can I get a salad instead of fries for the side?” I asked, attempting to squelch my growing irritation over supermarkets and restaurants that charge more money to eat healthy than to eat fried, fatty foods.

“It’ll cost extra, but yeah, you can do that.”

And there it is again – it costs more to eat lettuce, a little cheese and salad dressing rather than a mound of French fries. Why is that?

Turns out that it cost quite a bit extra. The brisket with fries would have cost $6.99. The brisket minus the fries with a salad was $9.85. Throw in $2.40 for a beverage and it’s more than $12.00 for something I ordered off the lunch menu, which is supposed to offer specials.

Fast forward a few hours and I’m in Walmart to do some major grocery shopping. Lean Cuisine meals are nearly three dollars. I look across the aisle and see Banquet meals for less than a dollar. Sugar free ice cream is nearly four dollars. The Walmart brand is less than two. Lean hamburger is eighty cents more per pound than fatty hamburger. Low-fat cheese is more expensive than regular cheese. Wheat tortillas are more expensive than flour tortillas.

On and on it goes.

I visit the diabetic section in the pharmacy to see how much Glucose control drinks cost – a six pack costs nearly $10.00. I could easily pick up a six pack of a sugary drinks for a fourth of that price. Snack bars in this section are way overpriced too. I make a mental note to avoid this section in the future.

Healthy foods, especially those that are packaged, are more expensive to manufacture because, presumably, there isn’t as much volume so sales are lower. More research goes into creating those products as well and they need to recoup the costs. I understand all of that. But the idea of paying more – much more in some cases – for food that is healthy, rather than food that is full of sugar, salt and all sorts of preservatives is ... well, irritating.

I need to get past the irritation.

I’d rather pay an extra $30.00 per week in groceries and be healthy than the alternative. But I would love it if a restaurant or two would cut me a break and substitute a salad for fries without charging me extra.

Would love to hear your thoughts and stories about the cost of eating healthier.


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