Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Supermarket Diet Friendly Tips

Hey peeps! I'm holding off my next post until I get back from vacation (I'll be gone for 4 days of fun and relaxation in sunny Orange County, California) but here's a list of Supermarket Diet Friendly Tips to hold you until my next post. See ya'! 

Here are a few ways you can guarantee your visit to the Supermarket will be friendly to your diet:

1. Always make a shopping list before you go and do not buy anything that is not on your list. This helps me a lot! Not only with keeping a healthy diet but with my grocery budget, too!

2. Make sure you always read the label of the foods you plan on buying; per serving calorie-count, fat, sugar and sodium content and watch closely for hidden trans fats. This is a must for anyone who is trying to eat healthier! A lot of foods now a days advertise the "healthy" benefits, like high in fiber, "only 100 calories", "only 1 gram of fat" - stuff like that, betting that you'll be too impressed by those facts to take a look at the nutrition panel and see the high amount of sugar or sodium that is in the product.

3.Take your water bottle shopping with you. When you are tempted, gulp some water. Water keeps you full, hydrated and busy. Keeping that water bottle close by also reminds you of the Journey you are on, to a healthy new you!

4. Visit the produce department first. Fresh vegetables and fruit are the foundation of your healthy lifestyle. They are excellent sources of complex carbohydrates and a lot of times they are high in bulk and low calorie-density foods. Fresh vegetables and fruit make great snacks. They bring beautiful color to your table. Have you ever noticed how brightly colored and inviting the produce department is? Fresh and pristine! Don't leave without trying something new.

5. Never shop on an empty stomach. You are guaranteed a dismal visit to the Supermarket when your tummy is growling. Shopping on an empty stomach takes the control away from you. An empty stomach will guide you to impulsive shopping of all the wrong foods. Try eating a healthy snack before you go shopping or better yet, shop after you eat a meal.

6. Don't use a coupon for something you wouldn't ordinarily buy. The coupon is making the decision for you concerning what you are going to buy; and more times than not, it's not a good buy. Your pocketbook may appreciate the savings but your hips will not! Fruits and vegetables may go on sale but are hardly ever advertised and I've never seen a coupon, just a little something to think about.

7. Bulk - think hard before you buy. Yes, you will usually save a lot of money by buying foods in bulk but will you save in the calorie department? How many times have you bought something in bulk and over-indulged knowing that you had plenty more around? I know I have. Again, a few dollars are saved but in the long run the price was too high.

8. Don't always grab food that is just below your eye-level. This is a marketing gimmick and the foods placed here are ones with the highest markups. If you look closely at the cereal aisle you will notice that the most expensive and least nutritious cereals are always at a kid's-eye level.

9. Spend very little time in the center aisles. They are crammed full of processed food. Stay away from all the promotional displays of sale items that you neither want nor need. They are only a bargain for the store—not one for you necessarily.

10. Never buy those pre-packaged lunch "kits" with crackers, meat and cheese, i.e - "Lunchables." They are always high-priced (pocketbook and hips) and high in fat. Try making your own "lunch kit" with cut-up veggies, fat-free lunch meat and cheese and some whole-wheat cracker options. You can make these up ahead of time for the week.

11. In the frozen aisle, stick to veggies and unsweetened fruits. Most frozen foods are high in sodium and not very filling.

12. Stick to your list when heading to the dairy department. Did you ever notice that the dairy department is usually the farthest from the entrance at most of the Supermarkets? This is done on purpose so those just going into the supermarket to grab some milk will be tempted to purchase other foods "on the way" to the dairy department. It's called "marketing" and works well. Stick to your list.

13. Buy NOTHING at the checkouts! By the time you get to the checkout line you need to be done with shopping. You can lose control very fast during the checkout process. Supermarkets like to put all that candy, chips and other tempting goodies right in front of you as you are checking out. Pick up a magazine and browse through it while you are waiting for your turn to checkout, strike up a conversation with the people around you, do anything to distract you from buying food here! (Another good reason why you should never go to the supermarket hungry.)

14. Get in and out of the Supermarket as fast as possible. It's a proven fact that the longer you linger in the Supermarket the more you buy. Take your list, get your groceries and get out!

The main thing to remember when you are going to the Supermarket is that you need to stay in control. Using the tips above will help you achieve that goal, thus turning your Supermarket experience into a positive one that will indeed help you with your weight loss/fitness goals. The Supermarket doesn't care about you personally; bottom line is all they care about is sales. So, in that aspect, you need to be well informed and prepared to meet your Supermarket's marketing strategies, hopefully these tips will help you out! Happy shopping! :)


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