Becoming a more savvy grocery shopper is a key step to starting a healthy lifestyle full of good nutrition! With all the choices we have in grocery stores today, it’s hard to spend time to really read labels and figure out which items are the most nutritious and which make the most sense economically. It’s important to learn to look past all the marketing techniques to find which products are actually good for you.
Plan ahead for success
Smart shopping starts before you even get to the grocery store. By planning your meals for the week and making a list, you can save money and avoid getting distracted by the junk food aisle.
Don’t shop hungry
Avoid shopping hungry when possible. An empty belly often results in more impulse purchases that are usually not the healthiest.
Convenience can be worth it
Sometimes, those prepackaged fruits, veggies, and nuts that you see in the grocery store can be worth it, especially if you have difficulty controlling portion size. Additionally, prewashed, precut fruits and veggies are much more likely to be grabbed for a quick snack.
In the produce section…
Take your time. Choose a rainbow of colorful fruits and veggies – the colors reflect vitamin and mineral contents.
Breads, cereals, and pasta
Choose the least processed foods that are made from whole grains. For example, regular oatmeal is preferable to instant oatmeal, but instant oatmeal is still a good choice. Make sure to also watch out for a high sugar content!
Shop the perimeter
The perimeter of the grocery store is usually where fresh foods like fruits, vegetables, dairy, and meat are located. This will help you avoid the junk food aisles.
Look for short ingredient lists
To avoid unhealthy processed foods, look for foods with short ingredient lists that don’t have ingredients that you can’t pronounce. Simple versions of food are the healthiest.