The Recession Can Make You Fat

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Walker Evans

You don't see a lot of obesity in pictures from the Depression. But over at Planet Green, Kelly quotes a woman who is changing her shopping habits:

"If I buy four litres of milk it's costing me almost $7.00 but if I can go buy two-litre bottles of Coca Cola, it's going to cost me two and change. That's a problem that I have... ."
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There is real concern that people are cutting back on expensive fresh food in favour of cheap but calorie-rich processed crap.

"People ... are going to economize and as they save money on food they will be eating more empty calories or foods high in sugar, saturated fats and refined grains, which are cheaper," said Adam Drewnowski, the director of the Nutrition Sciences Program at the University of Washington in Seattle.
"Things are going to get worse," he told Reuters in a telephone interview. "Obesity is a toxic result of a failing economic environment."
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McDonald's stock is one of very few that was not killed in 2008; its sales were up 7 percent. as one woman said,

"Some nights we go to McDonald's, they have those value meals. Sometimes we will have just cereal."

Drewnowski says that you can "eat in an affordable and healthy way, partly by relying on the basic foods which saw America through the Depression of the 1930s. "

"The answer lies in affordable but nutrient-rich foods such as ground beef, beans, milk, nuts, cheese, carrots, potatoes, canned tomatoes, soups, and rice," he said, calling it "a diet for a new Depression."