People often think that because I'm cheap, I don't really enjoy life. In fact, it's just the opposite. Because I don't need to spend a lot of money to enjoy life, I don't need to spend a lot of time getting a lot of money. But, you do need to know how to get the most enjoyment with the fewest bucks, and that's what this section is about.

Cheapskate on Aisle Five

Thursday, June 12, 2008

You might have heard about my seemingly radical approach to grocery shopping: I try to only buy food-stuff that costs under $1 a pound. That's right, Under $1 a Pound, Year-Round. Of course, as my poooor wife says, "If you are what you eat, then my husband should be reduced for quick sale."

I write a lot about this simple approach to grocery shopping in my book, and before you call me crazy, thing about it for a minute. My approach forces you to eat lower on the food chain, and in fact lower on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Pyramid (see Whole grains, legumes, in-season fruits and vegetables can generally be scored for under $1 a pound if you know how to shop smart, and those are the things we should be eating the most of to maintain strong health (and that - maintaining strong health - is the #1 way to spend less and enjoy life more).

In fact, most of the stuff that's hardest on our health - like fatty dairy products, red meat, and especially processed foods - happens to also cost the most per pound. As I like to say, "That's proof positive that if there's an Intelligent Designer at work in the Universe, he's a cheapskate!"

And no, I'm not a vegetarian, as you can see from the above photo. In my part of the country (Washington, DC metro area), I can always find chicken, turkey, and some cuts of pork on sale for a buck a pound. Of course milk and eggs, when computed out on a per pound basis, are also my allies in the DMZ (Dollar Maximum Zone).

I had a chance to prove myself when I was on my book-tour-by-bicycle the other week in Cincinnati and went grocery shopping with Polly Campbell, food editor for the Cincinnati Enquirer. You can read Polly's account of our shopping trip at:

posted by Jeff Yeager at 8:00 AM 8 comments

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