I spend way too much time at the grocery store. I have to pick up food for myself, food for clients, juicing supplies etc. Since I’m a health coach, I’m constantly looking at food and asking myself, “Is this a healthy choice?” or “Where did this come from?” and “What’s in it?”
Is it organic? Local? GMO free? Gluten free? Sugar free? Cage free? Grass fed? Raw? Pasteurized? Ok, you get it. Healthy shopping is a bitch and corporate America won’t be there to give us a helping hand(I’ll get to that in a later post.)
So how do I navigate the grocery store and discover the healthiest of foods?
Shop the outside and avoid the middle-What? You bet. Most grocery stores are set up with the whole foods – produce, meats, bakery, and dairy on the outside aisles of the store. What’s in the middle? All the processed foods. Stuff a healthy eater wants to avoid. This is not random, grocery stores are profit centers and they want you in the middle. Junk food makes them money. Avoid the middle!
Learn how to read the nutrition and ingredients label- I just told you to avoid the middle of the grocery store, but inevitably you’re sucked in to get your favorite box of crackers. You notice all the brightly colored packaging placed conveniently at eye level. They’re healthy! Natural! Nutritious! Don’t fall into the trap. Be conscious when you pick up that box of crackers. What’s in it? Check out those labels. Am I getting healthy nutrition? Look at the ingredients. If you’re buying rice, the ingredients should say rice. If the list of ingredients are as long as your arm with things you’ve never heard of, then put it back on the shelf.
Buy Local- Support your local farmer. They are the ones producing the organic, GMO free, and ethically raised foods. This insures that you’re getting the healthiest, nutrient dense fresh food. If it comes from the other side of the world, ask yourself, “When was this picked?”. If your butcher can’t tell you where your meat comes from, take a pass. Also it’s a great boost to the local economy.
There’s more to fine tuning your grocery experience, but these three rules of thumb will help you lay out a healthy plan. Be mindful be present and have fun.
If you’re interested in learning more, “Click Here” for your complimentary “Empower Your Health Strategy Session.” I also do grocery store tours.
Have a healthy day,