Basically, it's a study to see what the cheapest subsistence diet would be, meeting minimum nutritional requirements.
"...the optimal solution diet for a 25-50 year old man consists, on a daily basis, of 1.31 cups of wheat flour, 1.32 cups of rolled oats, 16 fluid ounces of milk, 3.86 tablespoons of peanut butter, 7.28 tablespoons of lard, 0.0108 ounces of beef liver, 1.77 bananas, 0.0824 of an orange, 0.707 cup of shredded cabbage, 0.314 of a carrot, 0.387 of a potato, and 0.53 cup of pork and beans. The daily cost of this diet is $1.78."
"The optimal solution diet for a 25-50 year old woman consists, on a daily basis, of 1.13 cups of wheat flour, 1.61 cups of rolled oats, 16.7 fluid ounces of milk, 3.31 tablespoons of peanut butter, 2.59 tablespoons of lard, 0.00724 ounces of beef liver, 1.2 bananas, 0.234 of an orange, 0.561 cup of shredded cabbage, 0.219 of a carrot, 0.384 of a potato, and 0.297 cup of pork and beans. The daily cost of this diet is $1.47."
I've been wondering if I could actually survive on the lowest USDA food plan, and now that looks absolutely luxurious!
Maybe it could work, now and again:
Breakfast--o.j., oatmeal and milk
Lunch-pb and banana on whole wheat, carrot sticks, with a liverwurst sandwich about once a week as a change
Dinner-beans, whole wheat rolls, coleslaw, baked potato
(Not sure how I could eat all that lard, or that I'd want to!)
Not sure I want to slash the food budget this far