When we go shopping there is so much food out there that is not only full of rubbish but bad for us. Could this be hindering our weight loss? Our nutritional adviser Fiona calls the aisles that they are on the “aisles we don’t belong down!”
So what do you need to do?
Have a plan
The more you can plan, the more you’ll succeed in being healthy and fit. So, before you go to the supermarket, create a list outlining everything you are going to buy. On this list needs to be only the things that are good for you, oh and only buy things that are on the list! If it’s not on the list, then it doesn’t go in your trolley.
Want to see my grocery list?
- Chicken breast
Don’t shop hungry! Sounds like a weird comment until you realise that you have a shopping trolley full of Ice Cream, Tortilla crisps, and Double chocolate cookies. When you shop with an empty stomach, you’ll be more likely to be drawn to the terrible foods that you crave. However, when you shop with a full stomach (…preferably full with healthy foods), you’ll tend to actually buy the things you’re supposed to buy and not the rubbish you’re supposed to avoid.
Stick to the outer circle
In the supermarket all the good stuff lives on the outer circle! With a few exceptions (like Frozen veggies, spices, and oils), these are the things you’ll find on the outer rim:
Things you don’t find on the outer circle:
- Ice cream
- Fizzy Drinks
These are the things that can get you into trouble (“I’ll eat just one” never works!), and thus belong in the “We don’t belong down there” category.
How to know what foods are good for us
Learn to read a nutrition label
Most of the good stuff won’t HAVE nutrition labels (meat, fruits, and vegetables). If you happen to be shopping for things in boxes and bags, make sure you take 30 seconds to actually read the nutrition label. It’s amazing what they’ll hide in food these days!
These are the important things you need to know:
Don’t let the name on the front fool you! Never let the words “healthy choice” or “natural” get in the way of you making a good decision again. Make sure you don’t get scammed by labels.
Scope the ingredients list. The first ingredient makes up the most of the product, followed by the next, etc. Generally speaking, the fewer the ingredients, the better.
Just because it doesn’t say “sugar” doesn’t mean it’s not loaded with the evil stuff! You know those “healthy” cereal bars? Three of their ingredients are sugar, brown rice syrup, and honey.
I walk down the aisles and what do I see at the end of each one? A special offer! Now we all love a bargain, to get something for a reduced price is fab. However, if we look closer at what those things are on the ‘Buy One Get One Free’ we can see that they aren’t that special after all!! In fact 90% of the offers are pretty bad for us and our bodies…. crisps, wine, chocolate, muffins, the list goes on.
So get to the point Chris!! Okay…all I want you to do is simple, eat more vegetables please! That is my first request.
These types of foods are literally full of nutrients that your body will love you feeding it forever. You can get such a variety that will make your body and mind be more positive and healthy.
When I say this to most of my clients I get this response “But I don’t like vegetables, I can’t eat broccoli” or “Are baked beans and sausages counted!” ARRRGGHHHH!!!!
So from today we are going to be positive about vegetables, to say you don’t like vegetables is like saying I don’t like reading books, the variety and choice is too big for you not to like every vegetable or book. So here is what I want you to try…
Every time you go into your green grocers, make it a goal to pick out ONE new vegetable and learn how to prepare it. If you feel there are too many options? Narrow it down by picking a new vegetable that’s on sale that week! It’s a great way to branch out, limit the number of decisions you need to make AND save money.
Don’t know what the vegetable is, or how to prepare it? Google it! Back when I bought my first butternut squash I had no clue what to do with it…so I googled ‘butternut squash’ and we ended up with butternut squash and sweet potato soup (diary free). We still eat it now.
If you really aren’t sure, ask. Ask one of the nice employees (my friend Fiona works at Sainsbury’s and she will defo help you out!) at the supermarket, ask them what they like and why. 9 times out of 10 they will have some wise words for you!
Quick tip; Frozen vegetables are amazing – If the option is between eating frozen or no vegetables, go with frozen! Frozen vegetables are great for a few reasons: they won’t go bad, they’re easy to prepare, and they’re cheap!
How to pick out your meat and fish
After you’ve gone through the vegetables section, it’s time to move onto the meat and fish!
For starters, don’t overwhelm yourself. If you aren’t eating healthy now, don’t stress TOO much over getting the right organic beef, or making sure you only eat wild salmon. If you haven’t eaten a diet with quality food before, just get started by purchasing healthy food you can afford.
Once you have established this new healthy way of shopping (primarily meats and veggies!), then it’s time to pick the right kind of chicken, right kind of meat, right kind of fish. “But what do I choose Chris?!” Keep reading…
Don’t be scared to go for fatty cuts of meat to save money. Remember, fat isn’t the enemy.
If you’re going to cook that night or the next day, buy the fresh meats from the counter. If you’re not sure when you’re going to cook, frozen meat or fresh meat can be tossed into the freezer and will be ready to roll when you are.
Go for sausages that have high percentage pork, like 95-99%. They are so much better for you. Also, you should be eating at least 3 portions of fish a week. The omega 3 in fish (especially oily fish like mackerel and sardines) is shown through studies to improve our mood and make us happier! So go catch some today!
Okay, now you have a great starting point for your next shopping trip. Plan what you are going to buy and stick as much as you can to natural based foods, you and your body will benefit from it in the long run. If you’re not sure what the vegetable is, ask or google it and take a risk, try something new. You might find you really like it!
Do you have a question or want to know more? Get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org