Prepared Foods are Expensive Foods
Decreasing your grocery bill does not have to mean sacrificing nutritional status. Actually, convenience foods are not only more expensive, but also take a toll on health. A convenience food, also known as a prepared food, is any food that has been altered from its original state to make it faster to cook or eat. These foods, due to the processing involved are higher in calories, sugar, sodium, and fat and lower in fiber; and they cost more money!
It is really untrue that fresh costs more. Let’s consider a couple of examples*:
Cost per can: ~$2.69
Cost per whole peach: ~$.66 cents each
Calories per 1 cup (canned, extra light syrup): ~104
Calories for whole large: ~68
Cost of a 12.5 oz. bag: ~$3.50
Cost of 1 lb. of potatoes: ~$.59 per pound
Calories (barbecue) potato chips per 7oz.: ~942
Calories for 1 cup homemade potato chips: ~413
*These examples are best approximations as prices and sizes may vary.
From these examples we learn that it is nutritional and thrifty to choose healthier foods. The idea is to think fresh. With preparation, people can learn to make food and even snacks themselves.
Most convenience foods in the store are located in the middle isles near the checkout lines. Avoid these grocery store isles whenever possible. Choose foods on the outside isles of the store more than the inside isles.
As the name implies, convenience stores evolved to sell food faster; however, it comes at a higher price and decreased nutritional value. At times in-store specials at convenience stores may be worthwhile, but for the most part you pay for faster service.