Navigating the Supermarket

Navigating the Supermarket


As the number of regular supermarkets
increases, more and more people have access to the basic ingredients they
need to make simple, healthy meals.>>Another obstacle people erect to cooking is the idea that to cook
you must go to the farmers market and buy all local and organic food,
and that’s really not the case. The first and
key decision if health is a concern, is moving off of processed food and
onto real food. I’m talking about plants and animals
in their more or less natural state. Or things that are very lightly processed,
like pasta or flour, things like that. And those things are still
in your supermarket. They’re mostly on the periphery
of the supermarket. And one way to shop is sticking
to the perimeter of the store. That historically is where the produce is,
where the meat is, where the fish is, and where the dairy is.>>When people visit the supermarket
to buy perishable items like milk or eggs, the most direct routes to
those items will often be stocked with the most heavily processed foods. The things like cereals, chips, and sodas. In many countries today,
food marketing is a big business. In the US alone, billions of dollars
are spent establishing brand loyalty and placing highly processed items at eye
level where we can easily reach them. This can make it difficult to leave
the supermarket with only the milk and the eggs we intended to buy. For this reason,
it’s a good idea to make a shopping list before you go to the store, and
then try and stick to that list. Going grocery shopping when you’re
hungry can also dramatically increase the temptation to buy calorie
dense highly processed foods.>>Avoid the center aisles. The center aisles are where
the imperishable foods, the foods that are immortal, live. And food is alive and
it should eventually die. And a food that doesn’t,
there’s something we should wonder about. It’s been over-processed,
it’s been hyper-processed.>>One way to tell if a food
is hyper-processed is to look at the number of ingredients
listed on the packaging. A food that contains fewer ingredients
is almost certainly less processed. Also, if we can recognize
the ingredients listed, this almost always means
the food is less processed than foods containing ingredients that
the average person has never heard of. And remember, foods that don’t come
with ingredient lists, like fruits and vegetables, are usually
the best choices of all.

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