I've seen pasta sold for under $1 a pound, and one pound of pasta is more than enough for a meal, so $3 a day is enough. And rice is even cheaper. I'm not recommending a diet of nothing but rice and pasta. I'm just using them as examples to demonstrate the point. I've seen milk sold for under $2.50 a gallon, and a gallon of milk has about enough protein for 3-4 days. I'm not suggesting a diet of nothing but milk either; again, it's an example. But you could drink a pint of milk each day, which would give you half your protein for the day, and the gallon would last four days, so you'd be spending only $0.62 per day on milk. With the right combination of inexpensive foods, you can survive on under $5 a day.