It’s hard not to spend too much time at the dinner table during the holiday season, getting fatter on our way to the poor house. Though we are lectured constantly about eating right, most of us don’t. And the reason, it seems, is more a matter of economics than self-indulgence.
Eating right, new research shows, is getting so expensive that millions of Americans can’t afford it.
In what is believed to be the first study of its kind, researchers at the University of Washington focused on the cost of eating foods that are rich in nutrients, and low in calories, like fresh vegetables, whole grains, fish and lean meats. That’s the stuff we’re told we have to eat if we are going to shed a few pounds and remain healthy.
But when the researchers checked prices at numerous stores around the Seattle area, they found that the good, healthy foods had soared in price over a two-year period, jumping by nearly 20 percent compared to a 5 percent increase in the overall food price inflation. And during that same period, high-calorie foods had remained about the same price, and in some cases had actually dropped.