Doesn’t it seem the more and more we shop for food, the more confusing and overwhelming it gets? Even I find myself lost amongst isles and isles of choices. Navigating the grocery store doesn’t have to be so difficult. I am going to help arm you with the effective tools to quickly and effortlessness navigate your way through the store. We spend hours of our lives at grocery stores each year, why not spare some extra time for the other important things in your life.
Here are some tips to keep you on track!
First things first. Make sure you have your reusable bags, wallet, grocery list, and any coupon clippings you took the time to cut out of the Sunday news paper. Once you have those important things you are ready to shop. Shop the perimeter and try to stay away from the center isles at all costs.
Usually when you enter your grocer store you come face to face with the colorful produce in your supermarket. Choose the majority of those items organic while paying close attention to the dirty dozen. Once you loaded up on a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, check out the seafood section. These cold-blooded aquatic vertebrates are a great source of protein while low in saturated fat. On top of that they’re loaded with omega-3 fatty acids which are known to decrease triglyceride levels, slow growth rate of atherosclerotic plaque, and lower blood pressure. When choosing fish, choose based on your location. If you are close to the ocean, go for the fresh, local options; if residing inland go for a vacuum-packed frozen option. Modern freezing techniques make many of the fish in the freezer section superior due to flash-freezing techniques. Your next stop is Animal Protein. Everybody is different and has different dietary needs. Some people live best with some animal protein in their diet. Choose options that are high-quality, organic, and free-range. Be sure to check the packaging dates. Dairy is usually found soon after the meat in the super market. Choose high-quality, organic products and experiment with fat-content. If you are a highly active person and enjoy having dairy in your diet, try the whole version. The whole version is in it’s most simplest form, satisfying, and can keep you from craving other high fat dairy options such as ice cream. Although dairy is fine in small portions, try to limit your dairy intake. Notice how you feel with it and without. You may feel best leaving it out of your diet. Next you can usually find eggs and soy protein. As for eggs, they are the perfect combination of protein, carbohydrate and fat. They are also a great source of Vitamin D which plays an important role in maintaining organ systems and absorbing calcium. Three things to look for when choosing eggs: organic, free range and vegetarian fed. The most popular type of soy is tofu. It can be a great alternative to meat and can take on pretty much any shape or flavor it is cooked with. Tempe, another form of soy protein, is great sauteed with veggies. It is also a great alternative for getting the extra protein you may be missing if you are a vegan or vegetarian. As you round the second corner of the grocery store, you can usually find the bakery. If you can’t live with out bread in your diet, choose options with five or less ingredients. You don’t need all the extra preservatives that most breads are chock full of these days. Top five ingredients: 100% whole wheat flour, salt, yeast, sugar (preferably honey), and water. The grain isle is one important isle not to miss. If you are lucky, your grocery store will have a section with grains in bulk. If not, don’t worry, I can still point you in the right direction. The bulk section is usually full of grains, beans, seeds, and nuts. They are all great sources of healthy fats and fiber. Grains boast B vitamins, while, beans, seeds and nuts are a great option for incorporating healthy sources of protein in your diet. You can buy as much or as little as you like without paying for the fancy packaging. If you don’t have a bulk section, visit the isle with packaged grains. It is extremely important to incorporate grains as a primary source for carbohydrates. Try something new that you haven’t heard of before. The best options easy to incorporate are buckwheat, millet, quinoa, and brown rice. Visit the bean, legume, and lentil isle as well, if your store doesn’t come equipped with a bulk section.. These are great sources of essential amino acids when combined with rice and grains to make a complete protein. Lentils are a great source of iron, used to prevent iron deficiency in vegetarians and vegans. If you need other products, be sure to choose items with few ingredients and without extra sugar in the form or corn syrup.
Well there you have it. A simple guide to keep you on track at the grocery store.
See later posts for more info on specific foods.