Skipping meals to make ends meet as costs of living continue to rise

HELPING HAND: FoodCare food coordinator Di Aitken with customer Gary Johnstone yesterday. Photo: LUKE SCHUYLER 0505foodcare1

HELPING HAND: FoodCare food coordinator Di Aitken with customer Gary Johnstone yesterday. Photo: LUKE SCHUYLER 0505foodcare1

SAVING money or being pushed for time are two of the key reasons people skip breakfast, according to a group of FoodCare customers.

Alice Bingham says she takes budgeting seriously and will often skip meals to make ends meet and ensure her teenage son has three meals a day.

“I’ve got diabetes, so my doctor’s not happy about me missing meals,” she said.

“But my kid eats more and more as he gets older and groceries keep going up.”

Ms Bingham said the last time she went supermarket shopping she spent $60 on groceries, including chicken wings and fish fingers.

“Chicken wings only cover one meal and fish fingers don’t last long either,” she said.

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FoodCare client Laura Blowes, who has two young children, says sometimes she misses breakfast due to time restraints.

In order to stretch her budget further she visits FoodCare and also prepares all her own meals rather than eating out.

“My kids always eat breakfast though, it’s the first thing they want when they get up,” she said.

FoodCare customer Lynn Johnstone said eating a good breakfast can sometime fill you up so much that you don’t even need lunch, while Maree Hibberd said skipping meals was unhealthy so she tried to ensure she had three meals a day.

FoodCare food coordinator Di Aitken says when times are tough people look at ways to stretch their budget, so she wasn’t surprised to learn many people skip meals.

“Some people do struggle to make their budget each week and to pay their rent and utilities, so they sometimes decide to spend less money on food,” she said.

tracey.prisk@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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