Are you trying to watch what you eat? Changing your eating habits is difficult. But, coupled with running out to the grocery store and being faced with the temptation of processed foods, candies, sweets and products made with white flour, it can be overwhelming. After years of failure, many dieters, and those who have changed their lifestyle choices, have found some innovative ways to decrease temptation and improve their chances of leaving the store without a bag of Cheetos under one arm and ice cream in the other.
The first rule of thumb is to never go shopping when you’re hungry. Unfortunately, hunger will reduce your ability to make good choices. If you don’t have time to grab a meal before going to the store, take a quick healthy snack in the car so that your stomach is not entirely empty. If that’s out of the question, then grab a bag of baby carrots from the produce department, or something similar, to munch on while walking through the bakery and down the potato chip aisle.
It’s also helpful to take a list to the store when you’re attempting to make better lifestyle choices or are following a specific diet plan. Make out a menu for the week and use that to determine the foods that will be placed on the shopping list. If you find that you continue to be tempted then take cash to the grocery store and not the credit card. Take only enough cash to cover the groceries and not the extra 10 snacks you would love to bring home.
Another temptation at the grocery store is often the bulk food aisle. On the one hand, these foods are often more cost-effective. But, on the other, if you eat everything in one week they are calorie costly. Using bulk foods at home may mean you have to split them into weekly or daily portions or even share the unused portions with friends and family to decrease your temptation and continue to save money.
Some foods can also be prepackaged for the freezer, and that will save time and energy when getting ready to make dinner.
At the grocery store there are often demo foods being offered to shoppers. Don’t stress too much over those because the portions are small and you usually have just one. These demos foods usually satisfy cravings and, while aiming for healthy diet change, these foods will often help satisfy your craving. Allowing yourself the occasional treat, most find that they don’t fall off the diet as frequently as they had in the past.
Try to avoid using processed or prepared foods as much as possible. These are usually very calorie dense and have an unusual amount of chemical preservatives. Most of these foods are sold in the middle of the store and for this reason you should try to shop around the perimeter of the store where dairy products, fresh meat and produce are found.
Any prepackaged processed foods that are purchased should be evaluated closely. You would be surprised by the amount of sugar, carbohydrates and fats found on the labels of your favorite foods.
While shopping on a specific diet plan may be challenging, it isn’t impossible. The goal is to maintain a healthy diet plan and decrease the amount of guilt trips you may take while snacking at home. Be sure to include snack foods in your list that are healthy and fit your lifestyle. Shopping may not be the most fun activity of the week but it is a necessity. Running out of food in the pantry will only increase the challenges you face during the week.