Grocery shopping – we all have to do it on a regular basis, so why does it seem like such a daunting task for so many?
It might be due to the fact that our grocery stores are full of deceiving packages, expensive “health food” items, and tempting sugar-filled treats.
We believe that healthy eating starts with healthy shopping and food preparation. Here’s some tips to shop healthy!
Before you go
Make a plan – Without a plan, it’s easy to choose items you might not need. Start with a grocery list, or meal plan. Make an agreement with yourself to only buy what is on the list. This will not only save you from having unwanted items in your home, but is also a great money saving technique! incentaHEALTH equips members with weekly shopping lists and meal plans (healthy snacks included!)
Eat something – Don’t go shopping hungry! A hungry brain will always convince you to over purchase. Have a healthy snack or meal before you leave for the grocery store.
Take inventory – Nothing is more frustrating than getting home after a grocery haul and realizing you are out of a pantry staple. Or, getting home and noticing that you already had a jug full of milk, but you bought more because you weren’t sure. Before you leave for the store, check the fridge and pantry for items you might already have from your weekly shopping list.
At the store
Now that you have a plan, the shopping part is easy!
Put those blinders on, it’s time for mission mode! Get in and get out. Grocery stores are not designed to encourage healthy eating. Ultra-processed products will be on eye-catching displays, and offer screaming deals. Stick to your plan, avoid the distractions and you will be set up for a successful, healthy week.
Perimeter shopping – It’s best to stick to the outer edges of the grocery store. This is where you will find produce, meats and other perishables.
Read the labels – Just because an item is packaged, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s unhealthy. When you venture into the center isles, be sure to pay close attention to the labels. The ingredient list is listed in order of most prevalent ingredients. If the first few are some type of sweetener, refined grain, or highly processed oil – put it back on that shelf, and keep on walking!
We have enough stressors in life, don’t let shopping for your body’s fuel be one of them!