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Smart and Affordable Grocery Shopping for a Healthier You


As the year progresses, it's a good time to reflect on your New Year's resolutions, particularly those related to maintaining a healthy diet. If you're heading out on your own or leaving the security of a school cafeteria, this is the perfect time to discover the world of nutritious, budget-friendly grocery shopping.

 

Your Weekly Shopping List


A well-balanced diet revolves around vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, lean proteins, nuts, seeds, and low-fat dairy. Filling your cart with all these items can seem daunting, but you can simplify it by thinking in twos.

 

Opt for two fruits and two vegetables of different colours, and select two types of lean protein, like fresh or frozen fish, chicken, lean ground turkey, or plant-based options," advises Nancy Oliveira, a registered dietitian and the manager of the Nutrition and Wellness Service at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women's Hospital.

 

In addition to these basics, Oliveira suggests incorporating two items from each of these categories into your weekly grocery list:

 

  • Plant proteins, such as canned or dried beans, tofu, tempeh, veggie burgers, or unsalted nuts and seeds.

  • Whole grains, like wholegrain bread, wholegrain pasta, brown or black rice, quinoa, or farro.

  • Dairy or non-dairy milk products, such as non-fat Greek yoghurt or cheese.

  • Feel free to add one or two healthy snacks, such as hummus or dried apricots.

Deciphering the Organic Dilemma

The debate over the benefits of organic produce continues. While scientists in the US debate the safety of foods grown with organic fertilizers, other countries have taken a different approach by banning or reducing synthetic pesticides.

 

Although not everything you buy needs to be organic, it's advisable to steer clear of conventionally grown produce with thin skins, such as strawberries, spinach, kale, peaches, and grapes, as they tend to absorb more chemicals. Opt for produce with thicker skins, like avocados or pineapples.

 

Affordable Fresh Foods and Staples

  • Many believe eating healthily, especially with organic produce, can be costly. But there are ways to keep it affordable.

  • Shop in smaller stores with fewer choices.

  • Never shop while hungry to avoid unnecessary purchases.

  • Make a shopping list and stick to it.

  • Head straight to the aisles you need and avoid unnecessary browsing.

  • Be flexible, consider multiple options, and go for sale items.

  • Always check the day-old produce cart for significant discounts.

  • Purchase unseasoned canned or frozen whole foods, often more budget-friendly than fresh options.

  • Wait for sales on healthy, non-perishable staples like quinoa, brown rice, wholegrain pasta, and high-fibre cereals.

  • Utilise coupons and coupon apps for additional savings.

 

Healthy Snacking Made Easy

Ditch the processed, grab-and-go snacks that often lead to overeating and unhealthy choices. Instead, keep an assortment of healthier options at your fingertips, such as:

 

·      Unsalted mixed nuts

·      String cheese

·      Washed grapes and berries

·      Easy-to-eat fruits like clementines and bananas

·      A rice cake with nut butter or hummus

·      Fat-free Greek yoghurt

·      Hardboiled eggs

 

To save money, consider buying certain items in larger quantities, like large cheese bars that you can slice into smaller portions and store in the fridge.

 

Seek Wisdom from the Aisles


Don't hesitate to tap into the wisdom of friends, family, and grocery store employees who have valuable shopping tips and insights to share.

 

Eating healthily doesn't have to break the bank. You can enjoy a well-rounded, nutritious diet without draining your wallet with the right strategies and a few smart choices. It's always possible to make that change, so start today.

 

At Clinipath, your health is our priority. To schedule a medical screening or to discuss any health concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us at +356 21221355 or 9985 2404 or reach out via email at info@clinipath.com.mt. We're here to support you every step of the way in your journey to better health.

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