Do you ever just walk into the store determined to get some healthy foods and walk out with all kinds of unhealthy food? Candies, chips, soda, and so much more. Grocery shopping is one of the most common chores. We don’t always think about it but lots of things around us influence what we buy. How can you go shopping without taking all the unhealthy snacks home? How to focus? Well, I’m going to give you 15 tips to make it easier to shop healthy!
Tips 1: Shop the right aisles
To eat healthy, it is a pretty logical step to start by buying food from the fruit and vegetable aisle. Try to avoid the aisles with unhealthy and processed foods. What you don’t see, you most likely won’t crave. Focus on the fresh food aisles.
Tip 2: Eat before you shop
One of the most common pieces of advice when it comes to shopping: don’t shop on an empty stomach. And this is one of the most important things to remember. Shopping while hungry causes you to take longer and buy more products and less healthy food. Make sure you’re filled up a little so you can focus on the food you really need.
Tip 3: Eat apples before
‘Apple?’, you may think. Yes, apples. Like I said in tip 2, shopping shouldn’t be done on an empty stomach. But what you eat before shopping also influences what you buy. There have been studies conducted in which people ate different things before shopping. The people eating apples bought about 25% more fruits and vegetables. It is explained that by eating something healthy before shopping, you will buy healthier foods in the store. So yes, apples!
Tip 4: Make a list
Another oldie but goldie. When you’re at home, make a list of what you want to buy. This will keep you focused on what you really need. Try to shop only according to your list. This way you won’t end up buying unnecessary food. This helps you buy healthy foods and saves you time!
Tip 5: Make a meal plan
Try to make a daily or weekly meal plan. If you plan your food ahead of time, you won’t overeat, or even buy unnecessary food. Also, you will be able to walk in the store, confidently knowing what you want to buy.
Tip 6: Spend on convenience
If you want a quick snack, be willing to spend a little more. Buy precut veggies instead of chips, a bottle of water instead of soda. It may cost a little more, buy it is worth it. If you have busy mornings and know you don’t have much time for preparing food, precut veggies or other healthy options to still eat healthy.
Tip 7: Choose the healthier option
Need bread? Go for whole wheat. Need meat? Go for a lean cut and skinless. Walk through the frozen section? Stock up on frozen fruits and vegetables. There are plenty of healthy options. If you have the option, go for it! Get that healthier food. It may not seem like much of a difference but you’ll feel a lot better making the healthy decision.
Tip 8: Read the labels
If you really need something that’s got a wrapper or a package, check the labels to choose the best option. Try to go for options that have words that you understand. Try to avoid artificial ingredients or high levels of unhealthy substances.
Tip 9: Stay with the season
Fruits and vegetables on season are not only cheaper, but usually also better to eat, since they haven’t had to be imported. Pick the fruits and vegetables that are naturally grown in your area. It’s really that easy.
Tip 10: Your cart is your plate
When you go shopping, try to picture your cart as your plate. An average plate needs to be half filled with fruits and vegetables. Try to make sure that you also have enough fruits and vegetables in your cart. What you buy in the store is what you eat at home. If you want to eat healthy, buy healthy food.
Tip 11: Don’t let ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ deceive you
Just because the package says ‘organic’, ‘natural’ or ‘healthy’ doesn’t mean it really is. Always check the contents. The people who sell food simply want to make money and don’t always have your best interest at heart. Know what you buy and read through the ingredients.
Tip 12: Check sales
Before you leave the house, when you know what you need, check what sales the store has. That way you know where you need to go and what to put in your shopping cart. Saves time and money!
Tip 13: Odd timing
Usually people go groceries shopping after work or in the weekend. Try to avoid the rush by going at an odd time. It will save time, because no one will be walking in your way.
Tip 14: Stock up
If you make sure you stock up on the basics, you won’t have to buy those every time you go shopping. Make sure you fill your pantry and freezer with the basics to cut off some shopping time for next time you shop. Canned, dried, and frozen fruits and vegetables are great to have stocked up.
Tip 15: Wear a watch
If you only have a short period of time to do your shopping, wear a watch. If you can have a look at the time, it really does help cut down the time.
Featured photo credit: Ed Gregory via stokpic.com