Eating Healthier Begins in Your Cart
In the past we’ve investigated the benefits of becoming a “perimeter shopper” at the grocery store, and though we did explain that it allows you to fill the cart with the best foods, we didn’t get to go over the entire list of benefits for those who shop this way.
Look at a Floor Plan
If you could ask the manager of your favorite food store for a map or floor plan of the aisles, it might surprise you to see just how common the organization of any grocery store can be. For instance, all of the baking supplies are in one place while all of the salad dressings and oils are in another. One thing that might suddenly occur to you, however, is that very little of what is stored within the maze of aisles could qualify as truly healthy food.
For instance, try imagining what your daily diet would be if you said I will ONLY shop in the aisles and not in the refrigerated section. You could have a lot of dried beans and pastas, canned foods, pre-packaged meals, and a huge amount of additives and chemicals.
If you reversed the restrictions and said that you would ONLY shop in the perimeter of the store…well, the situation would be dramatically different. You would be able to eat a lot of fruits and veggies, juices and dairy products, cheeses and meats, and also the breads and baked goods from the bakery.
Knowing What to Keep and What to Leave Behind
Naturally, we are not saying that someone who buys cakes and high fat beef from the perimeter is eating better than someone who buys the beans and rice in the aisles. What we are saying is that the most popular and widely accepted healthy eating guidelines and recommendations are far easier to meet when you remain outside of the aisles.
For example, we’ve all heard the recommendation that we eat a rainbow on our plate, but the reality is that it isn’t that simple to accomplish if you are buying canned and dried foods. If you are a perimeter shopper (even on a restricted budget) you can get a rainbow of colors very easily.
Finding the Rainbow
For instance, frozen spinach has all of the same nutrients as a bag of fresh spinach and costs pennies to the dollar. Sweet potatoes or yams are always affordable, as are carrots and many of the hard or winter squashes. This means that green and orange are easy to find, but so too are the reds, yellows, and even some of the purples and blues of the natural world too. You don’t have to break the budget to get the best foods, and you can often find that there are many bargains and “day old” super deals when you are a perimeter shopper as well.
We challenge you to try shopping on the outside of the “maze” for a single month. You will not see many changes in terms of your budget, but you will notice that you feel better and eat much tastier foods too!
You May Also Like
Here's your chance to leave a comment!
You must be logged in to post a comment.