Navigate the Grocery Store for Cleaner and Healthier Eating
You either love it or hate it. Grocery shopping is just one of those things that isn’t very glamorous or exciting but it is still a very important part of your routine. Learning to grocery shop smarter will help you lay the foundation towards cleaner eating. For some, grocery shopping is stressful and overwhelming. You have to make it through the crowds and confusion, put up with loud music and fluorescent lighting and sometimes you may even have to drag your kids with you!
If you want to change the way you eat, then you may have to change the way you shop. There is likely not a clean substitute for everything but that’s okay because just making small changes and becoming more conscious of the foods you buy and prepare can set you up for BIG results. If you only purchase wholesome, nutritious foods then you will only cook wholesome and nutritious meals! This leads to better health for you and your family.
What is clean eating? It is a lifestyle that emphasizes selecting whole foods or real foods over highly processed foods. It’s not a diet and it’s not about deprivation and limitation. Here are some characteristics of whole foods so you may start to recognize the difference. Look for:
foods close to the original state in which they were grown or raised.
foods that spoil faster than processed foods.
foods that your great grandmother would have recognized as food.
foods with short ingredient list of things you recognize and can pronounce!
foods sold without packaging.
foods found around the perimeter of the grocery store.
Here are some good starting points to navigate the grocery or health food store better and make healthier choices:
Avoid shopping for groceries when you are hungry. You will be more tempted to buy unhealthy food.
Always make and take a grocery list and stick to it. This can come from meal planning for the week and only buying items you need for those meals. This will also mean less time at the store and not wasting food.
Stick to the perimeter of the grocery store. When you shop primarily on the perimeter of store, you avoid most packaged foods and find more whole foods like fresh fruit and vegetables.
Fill your cart with fresher, nutrient-rich foods and less foods that are processed and in a box.
Become a pro at label reading. Beware of products marketed as healthy or natural. Just because a product says it’s healthy or all natural doesn’t mean it is, as there is no regulation for food manufacturers on this.
Buy organic when you are able to. There are so many amazing reasons to buy organic. It means that they will be free of harmful pesticides, herbicides, insecticides and toxic chemicals. For some buying all foods organic is too costly.
Refer to the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 when you are choosing your foods. They break down a list of fruits and vegetable that are full of pesticides and therefore should be purchased organic and a list that don’t contain pesticides, which are more safe to purchase conventionally.
Skip sweetened beverages and just drink water instead!
Buy unseasoned fish, chicken and lean cuts of meat and season at home so you know the ingredients.
Relax as you shop, especially the first few times that you are changing the way you shop for groceries. It’s okay if you don’t do it perfectly the first time or give in to your cravings along the way. It is important to keep trying to make the changes to help you reach your health goals.
This information is meant to help you get started with cleaner eating. Think fresh! Think whole food ingredients! Think real food that has no labels! Good luck with your new way of navigating the grocery store. You will be happy with how much better you feel eating more nutritious foods.
Calgary Health Food Stores you may want to visit:
Community Natural Foods
Sunnyside Natural Market
Local Farmers Markets
Are you looking to get even healthier? Could you use some support navigating the grocery store or health food store? Did you know that Penny and Megan do grocery store and health food store tours? Curious about how nutritional health coaching can help you make healthy changes? Let’s talk! Schedule an initial complimentary consultation with us today—or pass this offer on to someone you care about! Visit www.noshoesnutrition.com and sign up for a FREE consultation. We work with people from all over the world individually or in groups so don’t let anything hold you back!