15 Smart Shopping Tips to Make Healthy Food Choices
I felt as though I had been reborn after my gastric bypass weight loss surgery. Indeed, many a times I felt as a child trying to master a new skill as I tried to learn to make new, healthy food choices. Practice makes perfect and master that skill I did.
Here are 15 tips to help you make healthy food choices for your bariatric life as you navigate the new unknown waters of shopping for healthy food.
- Prepare a weekly meal plan that is filled with healthy, real foods. Include a few easy to prepare stir fry meals for week nights. Skip the rice, noodles, baby corn, and prepared sauces. Instead opt for copious amounts of fresh vegetables, high quality protein, fresh herbs, lemon, spices, and olive or coconut oil.
- Never go shopping without a well-prepared food shopping list that includes everything you will need for that week's meals.
- Do not buy anything other than what is on your list.
- Never go food shopping when you are hungry. You will be tempted to buy things that are not on your list. And most likely those foods will not be healthy choices.
- If your bring your kids with you, keep their focus on helping you get the items on your list, and explain about these new foods. Also bring a healthy snack for them in case they get hungry. These tactics will keep them from impulse buying.
- Every week try a new fresh vegetable that you've never eaten before.
- Join a local CSA - Community Supported Agriculture - program for locally grown fruits and vegetables that do not contain pesticides and fertilizers. You'll save money, too!
- Try shopping at a farmer's market for locally raised on pasture meats and eggs that are free of antibiotics and hormones.
- Shop on the perimeter of the super market. That is where the fresh foods are located. The interior aisles are filled with processed foods.
- Completely avoid the candy, chips, and soda aisles no matter what -- or any other aisle where you know that your resistance will be low.
- If you must indulge your sweet tooth, learn to make healthy desserts. Fresh fruit topped with plain Greek yogurt and drizzled with a little raw honey is just one example.
- If you must buy processed foods, then read nutrition labels and go for very minimally processed foods. A few food label rules of thumb: The fewer ingredients the better; if your grandmother would not recognize an ingredient then do not eat it; and if you cannot pronounce an ingredient then do not eat it.
- Understand nutrition labels so that you know what you are buying. Items that you may think are healthy, such as flavored waters and sports drinks, and juice advertised as "less sugar" contain artificial sweeteners.
- Many foods marketed as low fat contains higher amounts of sugar that their full fat versions.
- Additionally, foods that are marketed as healthy alternatives, such as lower fat or low cholesterol margarine and fake butters, contain very unhealthy chemical additives and trans fat.
Each and every time you go shopping, be sure to make healthy choices that will support your weight loss surgery. You will be on the right path to maintaining your weight loss for the long-term.
Living life well-fed,
My Bariatric Life
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Published On: March 19, 2013