Grocery shopping can be stressful when you’re keeping your health in mind while surrounded by endless aisles of processed “junk” foods. With these tricks, you’ll find it easier to resist those cookies dying to be picked up and placed into your cart.
Eat a balanced meal before hitting the stores. Your tummy will be full and won’t be begging you through its growls to be given those quick simple carbs found in snack foods.
Do your research. Peek in your local grocery stores weekly flyers for sales on lean proteins, fruits and vegetables prior to your visit. Plan your meals around those foods.
Stick to your list. Know which meals you’re craving for the week and write down each ingredient. This keeps the guessing out of what you should buy and how much.
Drink water as you shop. Water not only keeps your stomach from thinking it’s hungry, but the more you drink the faster you’ll pace through those aisles. That means less time to reach for that chocolate cake.
Think frozen. Many people (especially college students) are likely to skimp on fruits and vegetables while food shopping due to their higher price or decreased shelf life. When buying produce that’s not on sale, your bill can be high. But adding frozen fruits and vegetables to your cart can be beneficial to your wallet and your health. Just watch for added salts, sauces and sugars.
Get Technical. Download an app to assist you in your shopping. Some Supermarkets like Wegmans have apps that list the prices of all foods available in their stores. This allows you to compare unit prices, as well as quickly look up nutrition facts and create lists and meal plans.
Here are a couple recipes highlighting the frozen foods above and another grocery store stable, beans!
Berry Banana Smoothie
1 cup frozen berries (can be substituted for any frozen fruit)
1/2 cup frozen spinach (for added vitamins)
1/2 to 1 cup of almond milk, water or juice (dependent on desired consistency)
Instructions: Add ingredients to blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy!
Kale, Bean and Garlic Pasta
8 ounces uncooked whole wheat linguine or pasta of choice
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh garlic
1/2 cup water
1 (8-ounce) package fresh or frozen kale
1 (15-ounce) can unsalted cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
Fresh black pepper and salt to taste
Fresh parsley for garnish
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and oil. Drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid.
Heat oil and garlic in a large skillet over medium heat. When garlic begins to sizzle, add 1/2 cup water and kale; cover and cook 5 minutes or until kale is tender, stirring occasionally. Add beans, pepper, and salt; cook 1 minute or until thoroughly heated, stirring occasionally. Add pasta and reserved 1/4 cup cooking liquid to pan; toss to coat. Garnish with parsley. Serve immediately (serves 4)