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(article, Caroline Cummins)
In the Sift department over the past several months, we've taken notice of price comparisons at farmers' markets, eating locally on a budget, and politicians' efforts to eat on food stamps. Now comes yet another study of eating on the cheap, this time from the University of Washington. The researchers' conclusions? That, in American supermarkets, healthy food really does cost more than junk food. As the New York Times reported, "Calorie for calorie, junk foods not only cost less than fruits and vegetables, but junk-food prices also are less likely to rise as a result of inflation." How's that for a one-two punch? According to the Times article, the researchers in the study really did their math: bq. A 2,000-calorie diet would cost just $3.52 a day if it consisted of junk food, compared with $36.32 a day for a diet of low-energy dense foods. However, most people eat a mix of foods. The average American spends about $7 a day on food, although low-income people spend about $4. As Serious Eats pointed out, the study's findings are "sad, obvious, and true."