Even though the percentage of Americans who are unemployed is improving, an increasing number of Americans are turning to government food and nutrition assistance programs to provide the food that they need each day.
Bruce Watson of Daily Finance reports that a recent Department of Agriculture study on the Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) found that 42.4 million (or 14%) Americans are dependent on food stamps.
The average family enrolled in SNAP (or the government food stamp program) is given $287 per month. Many families on SNAP are not able to feed their families for that amount, but have no other money to spend on groceries.
This leads them to have food insecurity or the fear that they will not be able to provide an adequate amount of food because they do not have enough money.
The High Cost of Convenience
As they face this fear, Americans are trying to save money by buying “cheaper” convenience foods. Fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meat, and food items made with whole grains are recommended for a healthy diet but these items can be expensive.
The World Health Organization has recently found that approximately 66% of Americans are overweight, giving the United States the third fattest population in the world. Obesity can contribute to many health problems like diabetes and heart disease.
When children have to skip meals because of their parent’s inability to provide enough food, they are more likely to have problems paying attention and learning new concepts in school.
Preparing meals from scratch is the best way to stretch grocery dollars and ensure that your family is eating healthy meals. Take advantage of quick and easy recipes that feature low-cost, nutritious ingredients.
According to “The Cost of Convenience” by Diana Sagers, a family of four would save $3.92 by preparing a breakfast burrito recipe at home instead of buying them already made at the grocery store.
If you went on to cook your kids’ favorite hamburger recipe for lunch, you would save another $2.22.
By making breakfast and lunch at home from scratch, you would save a total of $6.14!
If you prepared 2 simple and delicious meals from scratch five days a week and saved an average of $5.00 per day, you would save $100.00 per month!
When you cook at home from scratch, you control the health and quality of the ingredients you use. Not only do you save money – you save your family’s health too!