Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Is Weight Related to Grocer Preference?

The secret to weight loss is in your wallet.
Way to Die Young #4: Skimp on Food Budget

To Lose weight you must see food as an investment.  When most people start to budget, the first thing they cut back on is grocery expenses. Not cable TV, not internet but, instead the food they ingest that grants them their livelihood. Every dollar you invest in quality nutrition is $10 saved on future medical care costs. Instead of buying processed junk, opt for fresh local produce and meats. If you eliminate all processed foods you will see a reduction in weight. Guaranteed. Your health will also improve tremendously.

The leading causes of death can all be attributed to poor dietary choices. Diabetes and heart disease are among the most common directly related to diet. An over consumption of refined carbohydrates combined with processed fats contribute to insulin sensitivity and arterial blockage. Many people complain, “I can’t afford to buy local organic produce.” Well how will you afford your statins, blood pressure, and diabetes treatment and medication? It is true that quality food does come with a price premium. Why is it that people will shell out upwards of $500 dollars for the nicest cell phone on the market, but buy the cheapest brand of white bread possible to save $.30 cents? This is your livelihood we are talking about. You truly are what you eat.

Take this excerpt from a recent Washington study:

“In the Seattle area, a region with an average obesity rate of about 20 percent, only about 4 percent of shoppers who filled their carts at Whole Foods Market stores were obese, compared with nearly 40 percent of shoppers at lower-priced Albertsons stores.”

I know this doesn’t mean that the shoppers are skinny because they shop at Whole Foods. But these shoppers make a conscious choice to spend more money on premium foods and they incidentally are thinner. When you spend more money on your groceries you also feel more attachment to the purchased items as they come at a greater cost to you as a consumer. You will eat less because you truly have to ration. Your budgeting now becomes “eat less to save money” instead of “eat more cheap crap.” For example, I eat lunch every day at Whole Foods. I usually try to keep the lunch around $6. This forces me to eat a smaller quantity of food because it is more expensive and I realize I cannot afford to eat as much as my zealous appetite thinks it can handle. The food is also of high quality. If I spent $6 dollars at McDonalds I would more than triple my calorie count and indigestion. This strategy is a win-win.

There are other options that are not as pricey as Whole Foods. Farmer Market grocers have grown in popularity and subsidize their produce losses with higher cost packaged goods. This means that they make little to no money on their fresh vegetables and fruit. They also have very competitive weekly sales.

The basic needs of human life are food, water and shelter. Why skimp on the most fundamental part of life. The nutrients that give us energy and health are nothing to build a budget around. Food first. Don’t you want to live a long healthy life, free from chemical cocktails?