Grocery shopping might seem simple, but the more you do it, the more you realize how much thought and planning goes into getting the best kitchen ingredients.
However, healthy grocery shopping doesn't have to be complicated; if you follow these grocery shopping tips, your next trip to the store will be fun and stress-free!
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Here Are 6 Tips for Grocery Shopping
No Shopping on an Empty Stomach
Going to a grocery store hungry increases your odds of spending more money and buying more things. Instead, wait until you have eaten something healthy like bananas or oatmeal with fruit before venturing out to shop. That way, you be as tempted to buy junk or unhealthy convenience foods when they present themselves in front of you.
Don’t Waste Food or Healthy Opportunities
To avoid waste, try buying only what you need. Buying in bulk can sometimes be cheaper and healthier than buying pre-packaged items, but you need to make sure that your cupboards are not full of expired food. Also, go for whole foods and limit prepared and processed meals.
Stick to Your List
Make a list of your favorite healthy foods and stick to it when you grocery shop. The more junk food you see in your cart, the more likely you'll give in to temptation and binge eat it later. This is especially important for those with diabetes or high blood pressure. Not sure how to create a healthy shopping list? Explore some farmers' markets for inspiration! Plus, it may be cheaper to buy produce from a farmer's market than at a supermarket where unhealthy snacks seem endless and inexpensive.
Some grocery stores have dedicated health food sections with fresh produce at lower prices if farmers' markets aren't an option. Use these as inspiration for what types of vegetables and fruits you want to add to your list and incorporate them into your diet.
Give Yourself Time to Check Out Properly
When grocery shopping, give yourself ample time to check out. The more hurried you are, the more likely you will make impulse purchases or forget to put essential, staple kitchen ingredients or items in your cart. Plan how much time you'll spend at each store and have your grocery list ready. That way, your visit is focused on making informed, well-paced choices instead of rushing around to find what else you might need.
Don't Let Displays Tempt You
When you enter a grocery store, make a beeline for your destination (such as produce) and ignore all other distractions. This is another reason why creating a solid grocery list is key; so that you can quickly locate them once you're in the produce section. Or, if you have time, go through your checklist before entering the store to confirm that each item you need is on there. This ensures that you'll avoid wasted time and extra calories from wandering down unnecessary aisles.
Don't Shop at Peak Times
Grocery stores get crazily crowded at their peak times around 4:00 or 5:00 on weekdays or a weekend afternoon unless you're OK with a great deal of wasted time. If you hit up your local market during rush hour, be sure to spend an extra couple of minutes in each aisle as it will take significantly longer than usual to find what you're looking for. Try not to rush, though. Remember, give yourself time to check out properly and stay focused on the task at hand. You'll be a pro in no time!
What are your best tips for healthy grocery shopping? Leave a comment and let us know!
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Proverbs 11:25 (NIV)