Six Simple & Effective Tips for Healthful Shopping
The grocery store can be a confusing place when you decide to change your eating habits and start living a more balanced life. The endless array of “light” options, smartly labeled processed foods and ready-to-eat meals can cloud your judgment and derail your diet plan. The decisions you make when wandering the aisles often separate those who are successful, from those who fall back into bad habits and bloated bellies. The reality is fast food won’t put you on the fast track to a ripped midsection, so suck it up and go shopping for healthful foods that will fill you up and slim you down. These 6 easy tips will set you up for grocery shopping success and help you avoid making the mistakes so many make on a daily basis.
Make a list and stick to it
Make a master shopping list of healthy essentials. These are the staple foods that make up 75% of your diet and include ample amounts of fruit, vegetables, whole grains and protein. Click here to discover the healthiest staple foods for your lifestyle goals and stick to it - consistency goes a long way.
Once you establish your master list, plan out healthy meal variations for the week adding secondary ingredients to your list such as fresh herbs, marinades and small amounts of dairy. Remember to make extra portions for easy options throughout the week.
Don’t shop on an empty stomach
Never go to the grocery store hungry! You’ll make smarter, healthier choices after a satisfying meal and will be much less likely to wander and purchase ready-made products out of impulse. Remember, even if you don’t eat these items in the store or soon after, you’ll be filling your cupboards with temptation. Out of sight is out of mouth.
Avoid the aisles
Unless it’s on your list, don’t wander into the center aisles. All grocery stores are laid out in a similar manner: fresh items are located in the perimeter of the store and the isles are filled with processed food. You’re best to fill your cart with perishable items like produce, protein and dairy. Avoid temptation and stick to the perimeter.
Fly Solo, don’t shop with a crew
Keep your grocery shopping strictly business, get in and get out. Try not to go shopping with friends who will have suggestions on indulgent items “you just have to try”. Shopping with other people will keep you in the store longer and temp you into other people’s bad habits. Shopping alone allows you to stick to your plan and avoid temptation
Keep it fresh
Choose real foods with few added ingredients. A general rule is if it has more than 5 ingredients it’s probably not something you want to eat. Focus on simple foods in their natural state and items that go in the fridge not the cupboard. Fresh foods contain more nutrients, taste better and keep you full longer.
Add these tips to you nutrition arsenal and remember, everyone slips up once in a while but it’s creating good habits that makes you a winner in the long run. So look straight ahead, stick to your plan and never look back.