Photo of Tabassum Firoz

Tabassum Firoz

Tabassum is a foodie and cites food as one of her biggest joys in life. When not eating, she is a physician and researcher working in the area of maternal health. She is an advocate for social justice and believes that poverty and inequality is the root of ill health locally and globally.

As a Muslim who is very experienced with fasting, this challenge has been harder than any fast I have done [including this year’s 19 hour fast]. At the end of the fast, I know that I can eat as much as I want and whatever I want. This challenge has left me hungry and anxious that I will run out of food.

I knew going into it that I wouldn’t be able to eat as healthy as I would like. I miss fruits and vegetables already as I was only able to buy a few within the budget. I quickly learned that I should have price shopped more and I realize that takes time and effort [not to mention money to get around depending on where the cheapest items are]. I am rationing my food and preparing all of my meals and snacks at home. Eating out is not an option on this budget.

In these two short days, on a positive note, I feel more self sufficient because I am thinking creatively [humus in 2 mins!], planning ahead and wasting less. Friends have been really interested in the challenge and we have had some great discussions. But at the end of the day, living on $21, hungry and worrying about running out of food is not the way anyone should live.

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