Everyone is familiar with the excuse. “Oh, I would go vegetarian if I could. It just seems so expensive.” The idea that somehow removing meat from their diet would cost more, what with the price of corn and broccoli being so “outrageous,” that you almost always know the real reason is that they just can’t give it up. Why should they? Meat is inexpensive, available practically anywhere, and packed with more additives and steroids that to see a cow used for beef is like looking at a professional bodybuilder. What if I told you that switching to vegetarianism is not only good for your body, but good for your bank account?
A recent study shed some light on this fact, and the price disparity is shocking. On average, a meat-based diet in the United States costs about $53.11 to maintain. However, a vegetarian will spend an average of $38.75 on a week’s worth of food. Though that may seem like small potatoes, when extrapolated over the year a vegetarian saves around $750 in annual food income.
Meat is expensive. Responsible for 51% of weekly spend on food, meat is the answer for families that feel they are too poor to eat “right.” Another misconception perpetrated by the health food crazy is that you must shop at a health food store to be healthy. It’s precisely this reason that this study was conducted with Food Pantry customers and Walmart goers. For just $4 a day, a discerning vegetarian can eat comfortably, and that’s without stopping at a swanky health food store.
What a daring experiment to try, isn’t it? If you could switch your current food budget for two weeks, or however long the preferred food shopping-cycle is, and replace your usual meats with protein-rich vegetables. You don’t need to commit, or make promises to your body you may not keep. But compare the receipts from your last food shop to your vegetarian list. You’d be shocked.