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Cristina-Size Me: The INDEC Diet, Day 5

By | [email protected] | November 7, 2014 11:47pm


After four long days, the conclusion of the INDEC Diet has finally arrived.

This is the last day that I will be spending just 10 pesos on food, which is lucky, as I was beginning to waver, whilst visions of tomorrow mornings, afternoons, and evenings lomo are already firmly in my mind.


Day 5:

1 Medialuna: 4

1 Tin of Peas: 4.99

1 Small Onion: 1:08

Total: 10.07


As it’s the last day, and I’ve still got a couple of small potatoes, some corned beef, and half a pepper left from the week, I’ve decided to be a little reckless. Sure, it may have cost 40 percent of my daily budget, and it may well contain more butter than any man should consume in a week, but I was craving some sugar, and anything with a fragment of taste, so I picked up a glistening factura for breakfast.

photo 5


I had my reservations about my breakfast’s sustainability, and they were well founded, as I’m famished and in need of satisfying my hunger. Ironically, satisfaction is the last thing on the menu, as I have decided to combine the potatoes and corned beef in a truly ungodly union, accurately depicted in the image below:

DSCF2731 Let’s not bother bringing up that abomination again.


My final meal of the week has finally arrived, and it is utterly bizarre. As you may have noticed from the picture, I fell into some good fortune, and came across some reduced prized peas, which, naturally, I snapped right up. Not so photo 1 (4)naturally, I have combined them with the remains of the pepper, and an onion, in a dish that seems to break most culinary conventions, whilst boggling the mind.

Fortunately, it didn’t taste as bad as it looks, and was actually one of the more pleasant meals of the week. I have gone to bed slightly hungry tonight, which I put down to my gluttony-driven breakfast, but everyone needs a sneaky morning factura to bolster that Friday feeling.

Cooking Rating: 3.5/10

So there. My experiment is over.

What does this all tell us about another suspicious statistic from the INDEC? Well, first off, I didn’t starve. I suppose that was never likely in five days, but the truth is ten pesos a day does provide enough sustenance for adult existence, but existence and nothing more. I did however lose over a kilo in weight, which tells me that this isn’t a diet for somebody who wants to sustain a relatively high level of health.

What is maybe more profound is that I certainly didn’t “eat well”. Of course, you could put this down to my dubious cooking abilities, but in reality the bigger problem was the extremely limited list of ingredients that I could purchase with my daily budget.

I tried as much as possible to add some degree of variety to my diet, but there just wasn’t the capital available to add the vital ingredients that allow people to actually enjoy what they’re eating. Although there was enough food to get by, I went to bed relatively hungry each night. Now imagine those people struggling to get a foothold in a society ravaged by economic woes.

It is, of course, the people at the bottom of the economic ladder who the INDEC’s Precios Cuidados scheme is aimed at, and whilst it is at least an attempt of keeping the poorer populations adequately fed, the INDEC must try to be more realistic about the figures that they conjure up in regards to this topic.

Five days wasn’t enjoyable, but throughout the whole process I knew that I was only a matter of days away from eating a more affluent diet. Unfortunately, many members of society do not have that privilege. If the government works off the assumption that people can eat well for ten pesos a day, then they are underestimating the price of a healthy life for the citizens of this country, which can result in an underestimation of the welfare needed to keep people away from destitution.