Did you ever consider how much it costs to “live?” One of the jarring realizations of getting married is that life is expensive, or more aptly, life is freaking expensive?! Without even getting into the argument about materialism and vanity, living a “normal life” isn’t cheap. Sometime I really wonder how some people who are sitting in “Kollel” are able to pay their rent and afford to eat real food… There are some other expenses that I truly wonder about as well, but I suspect that people choose their budgeting tactics based on their collective needs. For the record, I don’t have proof, but I suspect women consume more toilet paper than men. Between me and you, I think they’re eating it. Perhaps they do it to increase their daily fiber intake? Must be one of those female eating quirks. :-P (I suspect I’m going to get it over the head with toilet paper for this… :-/)
|Old School Health Map|
Regardless, at some point I decided that I had had enough and replaced my daily food intake with more nutritious fare. Not everyone agreed with my approach. Some of my esteemed colleagues took a different route, the cereal diet. Basically, instead of a balanced diet of food, one eats cereal for all three meals and probably snacks too. The diet isn’t all that appealing to most people’s gastrointestinal framework or even sane within the context of couture gourmet, but it works, it’s healthier than eating yeshiva food, and it is extremely economical. Personally, I went with the more healthy approach of fruits and vegetables coupled with high fiber low calorie bread as my staples. I wasn’t surprised to find that not only was I healthier and had more energy, I also (think I) felt fuller longer. However, there was one downside to this plan, the cost.
Dollar for dollar it’s just more economical to eat unhealthy foods. That is before you even get into the whole dopamine effect of sugary food intake. Let’s take snacks as an example. A 16 oz package of Oreos will set you back about $3. The monetary equivalent of that would arguably be something like two apples, a banana, and an orange at best. The fruit might provide enough snack time nourishment for a day or two, while the cookies should last a week or two! Personally, this is why I laugh at legislature that attempts to tax unhealthy food, because let’s face it, at best you can fix the socio-cultural aspect of food, but you won’t change the actual economics… I wonder if one day we’ll see that fast food chains like McDonads are actually killing the lower socio-economic classes of our society… I also wonder what sociologist will say about Kosher Delight, but that is more out of morbid curiosity. So what is the solution? How does one eat and maintain a healthy diet on the cheap? In the meantime I think I’ll try some of that toilet paper…
Update/Quantification: Recent study shows that eating healthy adds $380 a year to yearly grocery bill.