A new study shows that eating healthy food costs three times as much as consuming an unhealthy diet.
According to a Cambridge University research, the typical cost of 1,000 calories of healthy food in Britain in 2002 was £5.65 ($9.16), whereas the same caloric quantity of junk food cost £1.77($2.87) at the time. Fast forward a decade and the cost of healthy diet had gone up to £7.49 ($12.14). By 2012, an average unhealthy meal's price had crept up to £2.50($4.05) too, but was still nowhere near as expensive as its wholesome counterpart.
While the historical study was certainly conducted with Britain in mind, the essence of its findings hold true in most developed countries, including the United States.
In fact, another study from Harvard School of Public Health observed last year how eating healthy costs a family of four $2,200 more on an annual basis.
Therefore, it makes financial sense for families on tight budgets to keep on consuming unwholesome food. The responsibility, here, lies on governments who have so far failed to reduce the widening gap in the prices of both sets of foods.
What the policymakers seem to ignore is that mass consumption of unhealthy food leads to obesity, which in turn brings with it a brigade of health problems, which experts say are even more damaging than smoking. It's at this stage that the faucet is finally turned on in the form of government health programs.
Billions of dollars of taxpayers' money are then spent to fight these heart-related diseases, which wouldn't be as rampant in the first place if healthy food is made affordable for the public,either through subsidies or other price controlling measures.