Touring the aisles of the grocery store doesn’t need to be a daunting task! Your nutrition is important to ensure the healthiest you, and it benefits your body in so many ways.
“Many people feel overwhelmed the minute they pull up to the store,” says bariatric coordinator and registered dietitian Sarah Muntel, RD. “For some, the goal is to get in and grab food as quickly as they can, sacrificing nutrition along the way, throwing processed convenience foods and sweetened beverages in their cart. Change your thinking! The food you purchase at the store can be your first step to health.”
It’s ideal to eat different foods from all of the food groups so you are getting the best nutritional benefits from each. Here are some strategies you can use to add each food group to your grocery cart:
- Produce: Fresh fruits and veggies should make up at least half of your place, so you need a lot of these. Opt for choosing your staple food items, as well as things you may not typically purchase, so that you’re always trying new things.
- Meats: Meats are a great source of protein. Look for very lean beef, lean hamburger, sirloin steaks and pork loin as they are all great choices. Opt for skinless meats, but if you do purchase items with skin, trim it before you cook it.
- Dairy: Foods in the dairy section can provide protein, and they are a great supply of calcium. Be sure you reach for one percent milk, low fat cheese and light yogurt. You’ll get the same protein and calcium that the alternative offers, but without the fat!
- Cereals and Breads: Whole grains provide your body with the fiber and carbohydrates it needs. Reach for whole grain cereals and oatmeal without added sugar. Pass over the white bread, and instead choose a whole grain option.
- Frozen Foods: Frozen foods need not be overlooked. You can find frozen vegetables and fruit that can be used at anytime. Frozen chicken, beef and turkey meat balls are all great to keep on hand for your meal preparation options.