Healthy eating habits are a struggle for many people as it is considered an expensive way of life, what sad though is that the lifestyle of fast food is rapidly being passed down to children. The rate of obesity in our country, ranked the 3rd fattest nation in the world. South Africa has the highest overweight and obesity rate in sub-Saharan Africa: seven out of 10 women and four out of 10 men have significantly more body fat than what is deemed healthy, according to a groundbreaking new study published in the medical journal, the Lancet.
A study conducted by Nestle South Africa compared the cost and nutritional values of three popular meals for a family of four. The researchers found that takeaway beef burgers, chips and soft drinks cost average R221.20 for the four portions, with an incredible 4 624Kj per portion – making it the most expensive, and kilojoule-dense option. A South African firm favourite, home-cooked roast chicken, with pap and sauce and a coleslaw side salad comes in half the price, at R103,95 and 3 737,7kJ. The last meal, a healthy vegetarian butternut and pulse bake and coriander Basmati rice with a carrot side salad, costs only R72,54 to produce and it weighs 1 945,2kJ.
Adopting a healthy lifestyle is crucial and extremely beneficial for a person’s health in terms of life expectancy, this is a message that needs to be better delivered to the citizens of our country who seem to be careless when they are buying food. The misconception of healthy food being expensive needs to be dispelled because in all honesty vegetables are not an expensive luxury but an affordable need. You can save money by cooking at home and preparing your meals using healthy methods like steaming and grilling instead of frying.
By: Zanele Mash