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Has the Recession Caused You to Gain Weight?

This just in: America is expanding — not by miles, but by pounds. New data from Gallup-Healthways shows that in the past year, the number of Americans considered obese has jumped by 1.7 percent. That's almost 5.5 million more people who have a body mass index (BMI) over 30.

People are gaining weight because their eating and exercise habits are changing. They're no longer able to afford healthy foods, and since fast food is much less expensive, more and more people are turning toward Big Macs and Happy Meals instead of pricier lean protein, whole grains, fruits, and veggies. Not only that, but the stress of losing a job or worrying about keeping yours can cause people to indulge in junk food. Pinching pennies also means luxuries such as gym memberships and personal trainers may no longer be in the budget. Since many people have been laid off, the ones who still have jobs are asked to pick up the slack and do extra work, so there's not much energy or time to exercise, even for those who can afford it. So tell me, has saving money affected your waistline?


RockAndRepublic RockAndRepublic 8 years
It's possible. My mom has been buying pastries and cookies nonstop. However, i been sweating it out here in the morning working it off and it's paying off. Just because it's not happening to you doesn't mean that it's not happening at all.
Spectra Spectra 8 years
Nope, I haven't gained any weight. Working out is free and I like doing it, so I haven't really cut back on that. Eating healthy foods is something I refuse to compromise on, so I just make my food budget more of a priority and if I have to cut back on other stuff, so be it. Most of the time, I find pretty good prices on healthy foods...produce, eggs, fresh meat, etc. are not as expensive as the processed junk foods out there. LOL @ Modus...yeah, that's why we're all so fat, right??
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
Excuses, excuses. I'm so sick of it. Eating right is NOT more expensive. I eat much better now than I used to, and spend much less.
Frenched Frenched 8 years
I don't know. In my case, I think I've gained weight ever since I started my new job. It's a lot more stressful than my previous job so I have eaten a lot of my feelings away, too...which has of course, made me gain too much weight. I'm trying to be good and lose it but, it's hard.
HelloAnia HelloAnia 8 years
I just graduated with my BFA two weeks away. Lost my part time job and can't find a full time one... had to quit the gym because I couldn't afford it. I haven't gained any weight YET but I've also been clipping coupons and trying to make the most with the least amount of food + money spent and that means lots of bulk meat, veggies and fruit. I've been cooking meals and never eating out, so maybe that'll benefit my waistline, no difference for now.
doogirl doogirl 8 years
I've gained a few pounds since the recession started, comfort eating and carb heavy foods. It's been difficult because in CA, state workers got a 10% pay cut, and we didn't have this magical "extra" money to give back to the state. So I need to really concentrate on exercise to get these pounds off!
lizzie008 lizzie008 8 years
I stopped going to the gym and instead I started training (for the price of running shoes) for a half marathon. That made me lose a little weight.
deanna024 deanna024 8 years
We don't really eat fast food, but we have been eating out less at other sit-down restaurants. And those aren't really waist-friendly. Thankfully, since it's summer now, it's all about BBQ's and picnics, so people can come together and pool their money to share good and healthy foods ... and indulge a little.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 8 years
Um...yeah. It was the recession. That's it!
notinthemood notinthemood 8 years
Pookie, I lived in Toronto for half of last year and food is definitely much more expensive in Ontario than it is in Michigan. Especially dairy and meat. You can exist for cheap on mac 'n' cheese, but you could also eat smaller portions of healthy things and takes steps such as buying certain things in bulk and freezing portions, to make food more affordable. It's just less convenient than eating different things every day.
traciepwns traciepwns 8 years
I actually don't understand why people keep saying that eating out is cheaper. More convenient? Yes. Cheaper? No. I can make a meal for 4 that would be much cheaper than all of us going out to eat.
telane telane 8 years
Honestly, a person can make healthier foods than McDonald's for the price it costs someone to get full off of the dollar menu! Beans are a great protein source and they are ridiculously cheap, in season vegetables are affordable, and they have freezer packs of vegetables for like a dollar on sale most of the time. Rice is also affordable, and you can also get decently cheap meat cuts to supplement a whole meal. God forbid meat isn't the main attraction of a meal, but even then - a cheapo, not-so-lean steak has to be better for you than McDonald's! I feel like people just don't want to make the extra effort and be creative with their meals - maybe because they're overstressed, maybe because they're lazy, maybe because they don't know any better, I don't know why. I would honestly rather be a little bored with my beans and rice than clog my arteries with McDonald's every day. Oh and as for the question, I know how to cook healthy affordable meals for myself and my husband, so our weights have not been affected at all by the recession.
mamasitamalita mamasitamalita 8 years
last fall when I was in a really bad work situation, I gained a bunch of weight because I was sad and stressed and anxious and would eat my feelings away, essentially. I got fired in November and started eating regularly and working out, got a new job in January, and have kept up my budget- and waist-friendly meal plans and feel really great. I think being calm and happy with my life right now is helping manage my weight better.
notinthemood notinthemood 8 years
I think people console themselves with food... it's not that healthy food is prohibitively expensive, it's that unhealthy food seems so cheap and makes them feel like they can treat themselves a little. Which ends up costing more overall, but in the here-and-now it seems like a good idea.
shoegirl365 shoegirl365 8 years
I feel that I am cutting back on my food spending habits. I now price compare the things i can purchase at the grocery, freeze portions, have stopped over eating or indulging myself with icecreams & burgers. As I live in florida, it is easier for me to simply put on my running shoes and run outdoors to get rid of all that tension & worries that I gain at work.
heatherhas heatherhas 8 years
Uuuh, no. You can get a nice big package of chicken breast to separate and freeze for about $12.00. So, I always think the rational behind this is a little crazy. I know that they are usually referring to those who have lower income, but if you want to eat a well balanced meal, it is not out of anyone's reach.
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