I was relishing one of my old favorites yesterday. A simple black bean saute with carrots, onions, romaine lettuce, thyme, and tamari that can be put over rice along side fried plantains or an ear of corn. It's so simple fast and delicious. You must have all of the ingredients for it to have just the right flavor. Without the romaine for example it would just be like a black bean soup, just less water.
As I sat enjoying this dish I looked at how even my all organic ingredients still only came out to pennies per serving. Sure my Eden Organic black beans might be 50 cents more than Trader Joes's, only I like them better. With three or four servings per can, it's still quite reasonable. The entire meal was maybe $3. The time it took to put together was only about 10 minutes.
That would be the obvious cost factor. The less apparent cost effective benefits are in the quality of the food. More nutrients in how fresh and organic it all was, equals better health and less need to visit doctors or healers later. Less buying of supplements. And the biggest benefit comes from the added energy.
What most people do not seem to realize as they choose fast food or convenience foods is the energy costs. If your food is draining you instead of giving you abundant energy, that is a very big deficit. Not to mention that then you might be tempted to get stimulants to keep you going. Coffee, chocolate, energy bars all can add up to weight gain, lower immunity, lower real energy and even mind fog so you get less done which is often why you might be eating them in the first place.
To not take the time for fresh healthy food is costing many a lot more than they bargained for. So what really is easy, fast and cheap? Take a little time for higher quality living and take all your saving on a vacation....