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Old 09-11-2008, 09:02 PM   #31
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They do, it is called the EFNEP program, the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program. I used to work for it. I worked in the homes of low income families teaching them grocery shopping skills, gardening, canning, menu planning and meal preparation. Pres. Reagan cut the funding, congress authorized it but Reagan cut it out, of rural areas. It still exists in cities. It is a very good program. From what I learned from that experience, the problem is lack of education, not laziness. These people do not have a clue, don't know where to look for a solution, are barely aware of the problem.

About EFNEP
Beth, you are mostly right, but we do have some 4th generation people here who laugh at the rest of us for going to work. Sometimes laziness IS a factor. We are what we are.
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Old 09-11-2008, 09:54 PM   #32
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I blame the trends of our culture in general for most people's poor standards of living and eating.

I eat 21 meals a week, usually some snacks in between those meals. I shop at Whole Foods Market every Sunday and buy 21 meals worth of food and some snack type stuff, and have yet to spend more than $30 on any given Sunday. Of course, that's just for me and not a family of people, but I do believe with a little time and research, any low-income family can be healthily fed.
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Old 09-11-2008, 09:57 PM   #33
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I have read every post in this thread. I must say, that in my opinion, every post has valid points. My take from this, including my own post, is that there are good, healthy foods that are inexpensive. And there are a host of bad foods that are inexpensive also. Likewise, there are good and bad foods that are expensive. I believe that we all can agree that there are a host of factors that create obesity, including, but by no means limited to, genetics, eating what we grew up with (cultural infuences), lack of education concerning nutrition, &/or cooking skills, time constraints, desire to do work, laziness, and don't forget things like emotional cues, the desire to treat oneself, or eat everything on the plate at that restaurant that serves overly large portions (I paid for it and by golly I'm gonna eat it!), availablilty of wholesome foods, etc.

The original question was, does the cost of quality food create obesity in poor people. I would say that it contributes, but qualify that with the observation and knowledge that all good foods are not expensive. But to utilize that good and inexpensive food requires effort, education, and time, not to mention desire to improve. There are those, who if given the education, time, and availability, would improve their eating habits. There are those who won't. In all societies, there are a host of people of every disposition. And often enough, we are our own worst enemies. I used to laugh at the idea of eating all whole grains, and staying away from highly processed and starchy foods, with little nutritional value. Did I do it because I was lazy? No. I wasn't used to eating a healthier diet. Though the diet I lived on while growing up was fairly sound, with lots almost exclusively home cooked meals, I saw nothing wrong with fast food, junk food in moderation (not as moderate as now), and eating as much as I could eat. I was skinny, full of energy, couldn't gain a pound to save my life, and in exceptionally good shape. I was also uneducated about good nutrition and was just learning how to cook.

I would never have given my family bad food intentionally. I loved them far too much. Over the past thirty years, I have grown heavier, and developed diabetes when I hit forty years of age. I guess that's when my nutritional education really started. Before then, I didn't think I needed to know more about food other than how to make it taste great. I know how to make the most deliscious, unhealthy food you can imagine. And once in a great while, I'll still make an ultra-rich desert, or eat a fatty chunk of grilled steak. But those times are the exception now, rather than the rule.

There are no pat answers. There are too many reasons that people gain weight, including medical conditions. Arguing about such a subject is foolishness. After all, the "experts" have been arguing about nutriton as long as I've been alive, and longer. And they still don't have all of the answers.

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Old 09-11-2008, 09:59 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveyBear View Post
I blame the trends of our culture in general for most people's poor standards of living and eating.

I eat 21 meals a week, usually some snacks in between those meals. I shop at Whole Foods Market every Sunday and buy 21 meals worth of food and some snack type stuff, and have yet to spend more than $30 on any given Sunday. Of course, that's just for me and not a family of people, but I do believe with a little time and research, any low-income family can be healthily fed.
You buy 21 meals worth of food at Whole Foods for under $30? Can you share what it is you buy? I find Whole foods to be very expensive. I would love to know how you can get so much for so little there.
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:12 PM   #35
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Well, make no mistake about it, the meals I eat aren't exactly big, but they are enough to to give my body exactly what it needs to operate. So I'll buy a bag of linguine with a jar of whatever sauce I'm in the mood for and that's enough for 7 dinners for me. One of their big containers of granola lasts me more than a week, and that usually serves me for breakfast, and I'll take that with some rice milk. Throw in a couple of cans of soup and some cold cuts, and that rounds out my 21 meals. The snacks are usually just some of the dried fruits they have.
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:36 PM   #36
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while your diet may work for you. i would find it very boring. and i question if that is a nutrient rich menu. it can be done without spending a fortune. i still believe it is harder to do inexpensive meals for one person than a family.frankly i don't want to eat the same thing five days in a row. also cooking is a hobby of mine. part of that is finding cheaper, healthy ways for me to eat. could i cut something? you bet. i do spend more than i need to but want a really special meal once in awhile. so i cook it, instead of eating out to get it. everyone has a different take on this question. i do think we need home eco. in high schools. amazing to me that my grandkids have no idea what a balanced diet is. one grandson lives on junk food, literaly. he is over weight and does not have much energy. i had home ec. in high school so at least knew where to begin when i began to cook for a family. babe
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:44 PM   #37
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I have been fat since I was a young child, when in six grade I checked in at 20# and my mother and dad all ways had a garden and she canned and froze till the pantry was ready to burst and the freezer was full of health food. I do not buy any fast food or ready to eat food. I was trained as a classical cook and every thing comes from scratch and I still do. As a child we ate what ever come off the critter from snout to tail litterly. My genitic make up come from a long line of fat folks. To make my point I cook from scratch every day watch my carbs and still weigh 300# and I eat only one meal a day. Go Figure
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Old 09-11-2008, 10:52 PM   #38
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while your diet may work for you. i would find it very boring.
Boring as it may be, the point is that one can eat healthily without putting a major dent in their wallet.
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Old 09-11-2008, 11:11 PM   #39
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I would say eating healthy on a budget can be tricky but its not impossible. You have to be smart with your shopping and think and plan ahead. When I first changed my eating habbits and went out the first time to buy all fresh fruits, veggies, healthy snacks,and leaner cuts of meat, my jaw dropped at the total price for barely a weeks worth of food! But as time went on I learned some tricks on keeping my eyes open for deals, who has what with better prices and substituting i.e. buying frozen fruits for smoothies instead of fresh...just as healthy but MUCH cheaper and it wont go bad if I don't make it right away! So like I said ,bottom line, you need to be smart about it and not be afraid to do a little work to look around and plan.

Just my 2 cents!
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Old 09-11-2008, 11:37 PM   #40
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Poor People Can't Afford Healthy Food? That's just silly. I know a lot of fat, unhealthy rich people!
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