There's no shortage of scapegoats to take the blame for our love handles. And cheap "junk" food has long been one of the most popular ("High food costs may boost obesity among poor in U.S.," May 15). But remember: Just because it's popular, doesn't mean it's right. Health officials who campaign to remake our diets through snack taxes and zoning laws erroneously assume that consumers only eat "junk" food because of tight finances. But healthful food is cheaper than you might think. One USDA report found that there are literally "127 different ways to eat a serving of fruits and vegetables for less than the price of a three-ounce candy bar."
Though grocery prices seem to offer a convenient "straw man" for choosing ice cream over apples, studies show that our meal selection is mainly influenced by factors like taste, texture, hunger, cravings, time and convenience not sticker shock.
senior research analyst, Center for Consumer Freedom, Washington, D.C.