6 tips for a healthy grocery shop
Supermarket shopping is something we do on a regular basis, but it can be an overwhelming task.
Do you ever think about whether the products you’re reaching for are nourishing and nutritious?
The truth is that 95% of Aussie adults don’t eat enough vegetables.* Whether you’re a bargain hunter stocking up on the latest specials or an impulse buyer reaching for the closest tasty treat, it’s important to remember that ultimately, we will end up eating the food in our trolleys.
Simone Austin, Senior Dietetic Advisor of Dietitians Australia, shares her tips on how to be supermarket savvy, and help us become the healthiest version of ourselves.
Fill up your trolley with core foods.
Choose fruits, vegetables, legumes, wholegrains, nuts and seeds, dairy, lean meats, fish, poultry, eggs and tofu before considering snack foods or other treats.
Buy fresh fruit and vegetables that are in-season.
This is when they are packed full of flavour and you’re more likely to get a bargain, when it comes to the price. Frozen and canned varieties are also suitable, as they are nutritious, convenient to use, and have a longer shelf-life than fresh options.
Bulk buy healthy grocery shop basics.
Stock up on foods like pasta, rice, oats and canned or dried vegetables, lentils or kidney beans. This way you’ll always have a base for a meal in the pantry, reducing the temptation of ordering takeaway.
Create a meal plan.
Plan your meals for the week and use leftovers for next day lunches or snacks to reduce food waste.
Add more veges into your mix.
Include a vegetarian meal each week that has a protein source like eggs, lentils or tofu. Add some canned kidney beans, lentils, or other legumes to mince dishes or stews to make the meal go further and increase your serves of vegetables.
Write a list for a healthy grocery shop.
A shopping list will help keep you on track to buy the things you need, rather than straying to unhealthy items.
Fuel up first.
Eat something substantial before you go shopping. If we shop when we’re hungry, we’re more likely to buy things we didn’t plan to such as extra discretionary foods.
“Remember to aim for two serves of fruit and five serves of vegetables each day,” Simone says. Nutritious food can help support your physical and mental health, and in the long run, reduce your risk of developing conditions like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.”
*Statistics are sourced from the Government’s draft National Preventive Health Strategy, which aims to help Australians improve their health at all stages of life. Nutritious food can reduce our risk of developing diet-related chronic health conditions such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and poor mental health. Dietitians Australia, the peak body for nutrition in Australia, wants to see affordability and access to healthy food increase, along with better food literacy as part of the Government’s new National Preventive Health Strategy. You can read more about Dietitians Australia’s response to the National Preventive Health Strategy here.