Do you recall once when you were young or a very small kid and you would go to theme parks and amusement parks? All things there seemed massive and large. The number of rides was superb and you enjoyed a lot of games.
Imagine going back to that age and park. Now it would surely seem easy to manage because you have seen more so far.
It would be the same if you go to a supermarket or grocery shop. Many shelves, offers, brands, prices, products, packs, colors, and all that, and it would tire you to find the best, healthiest, cheapest, and so on. But, you can! With proper tools and proper knowledge, you can go for some things, avoid others, recognize proper labels, and similar.
These are our 10 tips-hacks for grocery shopping:
1. Not believing the tactics of marketing experts
It is easy to get lost in labelings and claims, but no worries. The marketing designers do this specifically, with fun images and nice colors, and once you are sucked in, no way out from the purchase. It is ok to know that the brain can be rewired and you can buy just what you need. Just avoid those stuff that says fully organic, free from, zero something, gluten this or that, sugar zero, etc. ee the BACK label with all listed items.
2. Labels matter more than all ingredients list
For years we have heard that you must always just see calories per product on the label, or fat percent or similar, but it is not that. Look at the whole list of ingredients. If the list goes on forever, something is wrong – there are too many additives. Processed foods have a ton of aromas, a ton of colors, preservatives, and stabilizers too. Instead, try to go for less listed items in a product label!
Also, pay focus on sodium and sugar levels, they should be quite low perce4tnage wise. Trans fats and some oils like palm oil are very bad for the health. You kind of need to be a little nutrition expert for this, to also see benefit from knowing the nutrition values of one or more crackers – but this aside…
Calories are not all there is. Sometimes just zero or low-calorie foods are the bad food types. A deficit of calories is good for weight loss, but it can be the effect we do not want. Just examine all things well.
3. Meal prepping and a premade shopping list
The next hacks are not hacks but tools for this next step. Try to reduce the waste in the house regularly, but with our help. Also, you will not waste money on stuff and foods you dont need.
Make a plan and this is crucial. It can be weekly, or downloaded as an app schedule, and write down what you eat, how often, and so on. This will give you an idea of the ingredients you need to buy and not something else. Try out maybe the Out of Milk app and get yourself a practical plan.
This advice is amazing and will make you be in shape, buy smarter, and buy what you need. Not more than 10 min of your time, but worth much much more and longer.
4. Never enter the supermarket hungrily
This seems dumb but it is all there is to know and I swear you need it! Going to shop hungry will make you buy snacks and fast food and sugars and never what is nutritious. You will get sweets, sodas, and whatnot, and never a banana or veggies.
Have a list before you go shopping and stick to it. Eyes away from trickster foods!
Also, if this already happens, at least snack something BEFORE you enter the shop and you can avoid overspending on unneeded things. Maybe granola bar or something sweet but healthy is the trick for this.
5. Health food areas
No need to starve yourself or crave a lot and not get it. You can be healthy and still have tasty foods, but they are mostly in the healthy food areas of the supermarket. They can be frozen, or fresh and raw, or preserved somehow, etc. just pick carefully and read labels.
6. Get veggies ready to go
If you hate cooking up veggies, stop and read this. There are already peeled, washed, cut or salad-made veggies with nothing else added. Rice and cauliflower, or beets, carrots, cabbage salads, zucchinis, and all else, frozen or fresh – ready to go!
7. Different foods, not one type only
Healthy foods don’t need to be or look boring, and it is more than broccoli, chicken, and kale. You can choose from many many more. Broaden the palette, get more colors, flavors, traditions! Try something like Jicama fries or Tahini whitefish. It might be fun!
8. Good balance ratio of whole and packed foods
Foods that are not processed are still the winners for nutrition, even if you still get healthy but prepacked and precooked foods. Still, no need to be black or white in theory, so at least be balanced and get half and half of each category. Get fresh produce, proteins, and similar, but postpone the canned soups or sauces, even if they are healthy.
9. Careful for the checkout shelves and areas
Exactly those foods are the tastiest, unhealthiest, and just the trickster way of making you get them. Colorful, shiny, sugary, don’tthe sweet tooth, and more! They are put there to get your attention, so do not be fooled. When you wait in line for the cashier, hands to yourself, never on the snacks! Do not trust this impulse. Get yourself a jar at home and every penny you would spend on chocolate, instead, spend it there, in the jar. And see what fortunes you would spend on sugars.
10. Organic choices too
We love organic food types but sometimes we know the budget is not pro-organic! Also, be more focused on whole meals, and not exclusively just fruits or veggies. If you want to get organic foods, try maybe the EWG Shopper Guide to Pesticides and educate more on what to get or avoid.
Also, many products are sprayed and not so very safe to eat whole, but there are always some that are safe to buy. Also, get those things when they are discounted too, and get two birds with one stone!
Maybe even go to market days, or farmer market events and get more produce for a good price.
You can try many tricks and advice for smart shopping, and live healthier and better.