Good nutrition is all about making the right choices at the grocery store. Come to think of it? You cook with what you have in the kitchen, and if your ingredients are not smart enough, chances are you may be eating to expand your waistline.
With so many choices to pick from, grocery shopping can be quite the challenge. Those innocent trips down the aisle filled with sugar and chemical-laden unhealthy foods can get daunting. Finding healthy foods amidst those choices is practically next to impossible (especially when you are hungry).
We are here to make those trips to the supermarket easier and much healthier. Here are the do’s and don’ts of smart grocery shopping.
- Do not shop on an empty stomach
It is common sense. If you are hungry, you are almost definite to take a quick detour to pacify your hunger on the snack store. The temptations around will make you succumb to unhealthy cravings. The wisest thing to do is pre-snack on fruits, vegetables or even nuts before you leave for the grocery store. Because when you are full, at least you will have the willpower to procrastinate such feelings.
- Classify your list based on aisles
Even if you have a grocery list prepared, it will be of lesser effect if you cannot find the items on the list at first glance. When you look around, you are most likely to find unhealthier variants and get confused. Therefore, it is important that you plan beforehand. Organize your list according to where you expect to find them and shoot!
- Do not cheat on your shopping list
Never go unprepared to the grocery store. No good’s going to come if you plan to go by your gut. When your options are open, it is almost definite that is going to sabotage your diet. Therefore, always make a shopping list and be loyal to it. Your list should be about healthy items, low-calorie options. The upside, you will save a pile lot of money too.
- Avoid trips during peak hours
Yes, there is a right time for grocery trips too. Most gym trainers (Looking for certified trainers in Jaipur? Try Fit O’ Clock, best gym in Raja Park Jaipur) says it is during weekday evenings or Sunday afternoons. Why they ask you to avoid peak hours is because that way you can avoid long lines, heavy crowds and your trip gets smoother and easier. It is also a time-saving technique and ideal way to pick up all the healthy options you need.
- Take your buddy along
Yes! A friend in need is a friend indeed… Indeed. With a friend, you can divide and conquer. Traversing multiple aisles becomes a lot easier. Ask him/her to make healthy decisions for you while adding things to the cart. Make him/her shop for things that tempt you the most. Another upside is you will have lesser aisles to go through and lesser calories to consume. All will work out for the best.
- Read before you eat
Do not stock up on things that are dipped in high-fructose corn syrup, preservatives, colors, sweeteners, and hydrogenated oils. Stay away from refined flour. Do not even touch processed foods. They are the worst of all. Not only they are high in calories, but they are also deficient in vitamins and minerals too. Read the ingredients to make sure if you are eating healthy.
- Get as seasonal as you can
Take advantage of the season you are currently enjoying. Pick up seasonal fruits and veggies for your kitchen shelf. They are usually available in abundant. They are healthy too. Plus tasty, cheap and nutritious. It just can’t get any healthier. Or can it?
- Shop colors of the rainbow
Nutritionists at Fit O’ Clock (best gym in Jaipur) recommends filling our plate half with colorful fruits and vegetables. It keeps calories under check and makes sure your body gets abundant nutrients. So, keep your plate in mind when you go out there shopping. From veggies to bright red tomato and blueberries, grab them all.
- Never buy in bulk
Never buy in bulk quantities. Though it may seem like a viable option, as it goes easy on the pocket, when you are stocked up with more, you tend to eat more (in fact, actually overeat). However, if you cannot resist a good deal, store them in smaller, single-serving-size containers before consumption.
- Frozen fruits and vegetables are good options too
When they are not packed in sugary syrups, frozen fruits and vegetables are as good as the fresh ones. Stock them up so that you always have something healthy to eat while leaving for the day.
- Do not buy in advance for the future
No. no. Just don’t. Never keep food on-the-go that tempts you to overindulge. If you cannot resist them, do not buy them at all. If you want to have them, go out and eat a sensible portion. But do not bring them home. Like that pint of ice cream you love so much.
- Try a new, healthy food every other week
So get as adventurous as you can. Try out new food options every other week. You never run out of those in the market. There are a lot other options to your favorite food that that you know about. For example go for soba noodles instead of whole wheat pasta. Similarly find other alternatives. You will be surprised about the whole lot you didn’t know about.
- Enjoy occasional treats
You don’t have to be too hard on yourself either. It is okay to make room for treats every once in a while. Occasionally bring home your favorite food. But make sure, it should be one at a time. Like, if you love ice-cream, stick to just one flavor (portion-controlled flavor). This way both your temptations and diet plan emerges winner. No overeating! No sulking.