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Eat On Less Than $35!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

This morning I read an article titled "How To Eat On Less Than $35 A Week" ( ). I really don't know why I still bother with these articles. I'm hoping, I guess, that there will be some actual, useful tips, but there never are. Like the article about maximizing coupons, which consisted of telling us that if we just used coupons to buy our processed crap, all our money woes would be over. Well, duh. I use coupons. The only problem is, I don't buy a lot of stuff that you can use coupons for. Instead I buy produce and unprepared meat.

These types of articles are always geared toward highly-processed foods. This article is no exception. What it should really be called is "How To Eat On Less Than $35 A Week So Long As You Don't Mind Eating Processed, Non-Nutritional Crap". The shopping list consists of hot dogs, buns, bologna (gag!), chopped ham (gag!), ground beef, egg noodles, ketchup, condensed soup, cereal, spaghetti, etc. The one nod to health is 2 1-lb bags of frozen vegetables. They also suggest, as an afterthought, that you might try substituting a bag of apples for some of those noodles, you know, "if you have a lighter appetite or are health conscious."

Wait, shouldn't we be encouraging everyone to be health conscious? Not just as an afterthought?

Let's look at the menus the author sets forth:

Day One
Breakfast: 2 bowls of milk and cereal
Lunch: 1/2 pound buttered noodles and 2 sandwiches (your choice)
Dinner: 2 hot dogs, 2 potatoes 4 ounces vegetables
Snack: popcorn

Day Two
Breakfast: 2 bowls of milk and cereal
Lunch: 2 sandwiches and soup
Dinner: spaghetti
Snack: popcorn

Day Three
Breakfast: 2 bowls milk and cereal
Lunch: 1/2 pound buttered noodles, 2 sandwiches
Dinner: 2 quarter-pound burgers, potatoes and 4 ounces vegetables
Snack: popcorn

Yummmmm! Carby carb carb! Not to mention all that sodium in your bologna and chopped ham (again, gag!). Plus, the possible carcinogens in your bags of microwave popcorn ( ). It is so cheap and easy to pop some real popcorn in a pan on the stove or a paper bag in the microwave without all the additives. Plus it tastes better. If we're going to have popcorn, let's cook it the good way.

The article is geared toward college kids living on a budget, which I can get behind. However, I think it would be much more useful to teach college kids how to eat healthy on a budget. I know I ate marginally healthy in college, with apples and bananas for snack, and multiple experimentations with ways to cook vegetables. I also ate my fair share of ramen and mac and cheese. Whatever, it was college. It happens.

After reading this article, I feel inspired to write a book to teach college kids how to eat healthy on a budget.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Not only would your book probably be much needed, there have been many blogs on spark about people wanting those tips. So while college kids might need the knowledge, the economy makes it valuable for all of us. We need your knowledge!

    2995 days ago
    Amen to that!! It is SO much more expensive to eat healthy and low carb! A constant challenge!! I am trying to stick to more eggs and cabbage and lower cost meats, but I would LOVE to see a real book or daily blog with great, tasty dollar stretching low carb recipes and shopping lists! Go for it!! : ) Wendie
    2995 days ago
    Do it!

    Yes, that menu is just awful! Perhaps the author should have remembered that dried beans are a cheap, healthful idea! Does anyone actually eat hot dogs for dinner? I enjoy an occasional hot dog, but at cook outs - I would never buy them for a meal!
    2995 days ago
    I think that your book writing idea is fantastic. I know that at school I did not eat like I should! Hope that you have a great day!
    2995 days ago
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