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Fast Food Makes Up 11 Percent of Calories in U.S. Diet: CDC

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/news/articles/2013/02/21/fast-food-makes-up-11-percent-of-calories-in-us-diet-cdc

 

Lot of data in there, and some things that SHOULD be common sense, but apparently aren't.  Here's the part I really don't understand:

"Income was not a factor in how many daily calories came from fast food, except among those aged 20 to 39, where fast-food calories dropped as income rose."

1 - this is the group where most parents will fall

2 - fast food is ALWAYS more expensive than cooking it from scratch.  If it's 99 cents at Taco Bell, that means it's about 40 cents to make your own.

So why is it the group most likely to have young children in the house and the tightest budget is more likely to waste the money on it than those who don't need to be frugal and can afford to have it?  Do people really believe it's cheaper to spend $5 on a burger they can make at home for less than $1?

Answer Question
 
NotPanicking

Asked by NotPanicking at 2:55 PM on Feb. 21, 2013 in Politics & Current Events

Level 51 (421,172 Credits)
Answers (20)
  • Wow, that's a high percentage of the diet to come from empty, fat-laden calories. I think parents don't feel it's cheaper to buy fast food; they're either pressed for time or they give in because the kids badger them for junk a lot. Neither of those are especially good reasons, but they're probably the ones you'd get if you took a poll.
    Ballad

    Answer by Ballad at 3:07 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • I'm rarely a consumer of fast food, but I'm pretty sure cost isn't the issue; it's time.
    SWasson

    Answer by SWasson at 3:08 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • Also I think there are alot more parents who do not take the time to learn to cook/prepare in advance meals, so when pressed for time they just go with what they think is the easy way.
    virginiamama71

    Answer by virginiamama71 at 3:10 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • First, I'm honestly surprised the percentage isn't higher.

    Second, fast food isn't always more expensive. I mean, yes it is for larger families, of course but, not for individuals or 1 parent families with 1 or 2 young children. Simply because you have to buy all of the ingredients if you don't already have them. And, since nothing is really single serve, it's always enough for more people than needed. I end up having to throw out a lot of food, simply because it goes bad before it can be eaten. So, yes per serving it's cheaper but, not if only 2 servings are used, out of 6 & then it gets thrown out.
    3libras

    Answer by 3libras at 3:11 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • So, yes per serving it's cheaper but, not if only 2 servings are used, out of 6 & then it gets thrown out.

    That's why you need to store what isn't being used - cut up a 3 lb pack of meat into 1/2 lb chunks before you freeze it, and only defrost a half lb at a time, same with the other stuff. The point is you buy more ingredients than you need, but you use the rest of it to make 6 more meals. You don't look at it as burgers = $9.99 for ground beef, it's ground beef is 9.99, and that will make burgers, meat loaf, tacos, spaghetti and leftovers.
    NotPanicking

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 3:20 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • It is fast and convenient. And after a long day at work or dealing with kids sometimes it is just easier.

    Best option... no. Cheapest option... no. Fasted option...yes.

    I am surprised it isn't higher too.
    SleepingBeautee

    Answer by SleepingBeautee at 3:30 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • I quit eating fast food and it made a big deal with my weight and my sons weight as well. Not to mention money that was saved.
    pinkdragon36

    Answer by pinkdragon36 at 3:31 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • The one fast food splurge that we make with any regularity, maybe twice a month, are the $5 Pizzas from Little Caesar's. One Med pizza feeds my three kids and I for lunch. I have actually tried buying all the ingredients to to make that and $1 for the packet of dough mix. $1.50 for the sauce. $2 for ONE packet of cheese....but you really need two. You are at six of one, half a dozen of the other. One is cooked and ready to go....it wins ;) We hit McDonald's for the first time in a WHILE a few weeks back and I was blown AWAY. To feed the four of us was over $25! That's insane! You wont see us back there again. Although the real thing that ooged me out about the fast food places was seeing the burgers and fries 1 year later! omg! They looked EXACTLY the same! that can NOT be a good thing to put in your body! However, the no preservatives added Capri Suns have gone off my shopping list for the mold that keeps popping up!

    momof030404

    Answer by momof030404 at 3:34 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • I agree with Ballad. I think a big reason is our crazy schedules. I try to make large batches when I cook, then freeze the food in single serving portions. When I was in full-time nursing school I would get a burrito at Taco Bell after leaving class because I really could not spare the time to prepare the food and do the dishes.
    Iamgr8teful

    Answer by Iamgr8teful at 3:48 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

  • and $1 for the packet of dough mix. $1.50 for the sauce.

    That's not making it - that's buying processed food and stacking it on top of each other. If you made dough and sauce, it would be less.
    NotPanicking

    Comment by NotPanicking (original poster) at 4:18 PM on Feb. 21, 2013

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