Friday, June 01, 2007

The price of GFCF

Eating GFCF certainly is more expensive - I don't think anyone will argue with that.

In the past I have never really kept track of the cost because it was just something we had to do. While I knew you could deduct the price difference of the foods, I also knew that getting enough to actually write off on your taxes was probably not going to happen - you are only able to claim a percentage of your medical and only if you itemize (which we do). But last year between the dentist and specialists we had a lot of medical expenses and could have claimed some of them if we had added the food on, but I hadn't kept track.

So this year I started saving my grocery receipts and tracking the cost in an excel spreadsheet. I missed January - I didn't start until Feb. 1 when I realized how close we were to being able to claim some medical expenses last year.

I am only tracking the foods that we buy that are GFCF. Not the extra cost of the foods that have nothing artificial in them or are organic - that's not legal unless you have to buy them because that is the only choice. I am sure if I tracked that cost as well it would be huge. I am tracking total costs because I believe that doing this diet as a family is beneficial therapy for my son and the reason that he eats so well. If we got audited I think I could get the doctor to sign for that. Dan thinks we should only track the foods that only Andy eats and a third of the ones that we all eat.

In order for the costs to be tax deductable, you do need a medical reason to be buying the more expensive foods. Just doing the diet because others have told you it helps autism isn't enough. You need a signed statement from your doctor.

This morning I updated my spreadsheet and so far this year between Feb. 1 & June 1 - the price difference comes to $328.95! That's a lot of money in 4 months and like I said that doesn't count the organic fruits and veggies.

If you are not keeping a spreadsheet, I suggest you do - the price difference might be more for some of you. I did it fairly - I didn't compare it to generics - I could have put the price of bread as a lot more, but I priced the bread in the store that we would have bought if we were able to buy regular bread and it wasn't the cheapest. I did the same with all products. Some things I would have bought generics, but many I wouldn't have.

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