The best place to get a bang for your buck both nutritionally and financially is in your kitchen, according to a recent study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Researchers from Oregon State University and the University of Washington assigned a Healthy Eating Index based on diet quality; an index score higher than 81 indicated a “good” diet; 51 to 80 meant “needs improvement”; and 50 or less was considered “poor”. When a household cooked at home three times per week, its average HEI score was 67; cooking at home six times per week resulted in an average score of around 74. Those who cooked at home also spent less money.

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