The Necessity of Ramen

I have to tell you that yesterday got a little hairy.  I didn’t really have anything for lunch, and when I got home, I was so hungry that I binged on 3 eggs, beans, and rice.  That’s when I decided to take the advice of a fellow challenger, and buy me some ramen.

Yes, ramen!  It isn’t something that I would normally consider a meal, but my goal was to fill my tummy with savory goodness for cheap, not eat only healthful foods.  My stomach was rumbling most of the day yesterday, and it was incredibly distracting at work and at home.  I just needed calories; 190 calories, to be exact.

Actually, after having consulted a number of community members who have lived on an even smaller food budget in the past, ramen was the number 1 recommendation.

With $0.91 left in my weekly budget, I went to Walmart and bought 4 packages of Maruchan Ramen for $0.20 each.  With 2 Oriental Flavor packages, 1 Shrimp Flavor package, and 1 Creamy Chicken Flavor package, I am now confident that I can make it through the work week!  They fill you up just enough to be considered a hearty lunch.  Oh, and I’ve only got $0.11 left!  I don’t think that I can buy anything edible for that much…not even ramen.

At the very least, Maruchan is honest about what you get.  They do specify that the creamy chicken is a “flavor.”  How they arrive at that flavor is a mystery to me, but hey, it lived up to my very low expectations.

All of that aside, I think it would be interesting to mention an article I found:

http://commonhealth.wbur.org/2013/06/shopping-lessons

There are articles all over the internet about people who have failed SNAP Challenges and what they learned.  This one is my favorite so far, especially since I made 2 of the mistakes that the author did.   In his article, Jared Bennett concludes that “seasoning is key, fresh isn’t always best, and there are many more barriers to healthy eating than cost alone.”  Perhaps I should not have spent all that money on fresh fruit?  Perhaps I should add something to my bland rice and bean mixture…

Have you hit any bumps in the road during your Challenge?

Was ramen already on your menu?  If not, what did you buy as cheap calories?

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