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Healthy food 'too expensive'

Wednesday April 23rd, 2014

One in three people in the UK is "priced out of healthy eating", health campaigners claim today.

The British Heart Foundation looked at the Retail Price Index in 2008 versus 2013, and found that the cost of food rose by 23%. In comparison, average rent rose by 12%. This has left 34% of UK adults struggling to afford to eat healthily, they warn, in findings released today (23 April).

The findings cast new light on the controversial spread of food banks in the UK - showing how the cost of basic items has outstripped other items.

The British Heart Foundation warns that the growing cost of food makes it increasingly difficult for many families to choose healthy foods, such as fresh fruit and vegetables.

An online survey of 2,444 adults carried out earlier this month found that 39% agreed with the statement "when buying groceries I have to sacrifice healthiness for cost". Most (65%) agreed "I wish I could eat more healthily than I currently do", and of these, 42% said their main obstacle was that eating healthily is too expensive.

A fifth (21%) had not bought any fresh fruit or vegetables in the week before the survey, and most (73%) of those with a gross household income of under 10,000 UK pounds per year agreed "I struggle to buy five portions of fruit and vegetables per day because of the cost".

In response, the British Heart Foundation has created a resource covering "budget eating recipes and tips".

Senior dietician, Victoria Taylor, said: "Healthy eating on a budget is one of the biggest challenges of our times. With the increasing cost of a weekly shopping basket it's a real concern that despite people's best intentions they're struggling to eat healthily.

"But there are ways you can make healthy home-cooking more affordable, so that the rising price of your food shop doesn't need to come at a cost to your heart health."

Tags: Diet & Food | UK News

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