Healthy eating starts with careful planning and organization. Since fresh produce has a very limited shelf life, regular grocery shopping is a must.
Create a menu for the week and write out a shopping list. You’ll save time not wandering the store, getting tempted by less nutritious goodies. You’ll save money too. AND a list will help you stick to healthy recipes.
Of course, local health food stores and farmer markets are money-wise solutions. Plus, the frequent visits will help you expand your culinary horizons as well as mingle with other health-minded people 🙂
Healthy eating means using fresh ingredients and gentle cooking methods without adding any artificial ingredients and fats. Take-out food often contains too many refined fats and artificial seasonings. Healthy eating does require extra cooking. But with you’ll soon discover that cooking isn’t a chore reserved for special occasions, but an exciting part of everyday life.
Shop Wisely For Better Nutrition
Here’s what your weekly shopping list should include…
All vegetables should be eaten young, when they are tender and not coarse. Vegetables are best bought from fresh food markets or seasonal. Supermarket vegetables are often genetically modified or have been picked green and ripened in boxes when traveling long distances. Sprouts and brightly colored vegetables contain the most vitamins and antioxidants.
Again, the trick is to buy seasonal regional fruit. Exotic fruits often travel long distances and are ripened in their boxes, not on trees. Local, naturally ripened or, better yet, organic fruit are the best choice for the health-conscious.
Aromatic herbs and spices can be used fresh or dried. The best idea is to plant the aromatic herbs in pots on your patio or porch, and use them fresh whenever you need them. To preserve flavor, you can buy spices whole and use them freshly ground.
Although cheese is quite rich in fats, it is a great source of vitamins and minerals. Buy fresh cheeses in small quantities and try to eat them at once, since gourmet cheeses don’t have a lengthy shelf life.
Wisconsin Disclaimer: In our house we buy a lot of local cheese because it never lasts 😀 …LOL!!
Buy only organic or free-range eggs. If you are able to, buy them from a local farmer or at your local farmers’ market.
Fish and shellfish
The best way to buy fish is fresh and unfrozen. Most of the fish in supermarkets comes from fish farms where it is fed with artificial substances. Pink salmon and other popular kinds of fish will most likely come from a fish farm. Shellfish is a more healthy choice, since shrimp does not live in chemically polluted water.
If you live in a land-locked area or fresh fish is not readily available, get to know your local fish monger. Find out when their fresh shipments come in to get the healthiest catch of the day.
It can be difficult to find meat that comes from an environmentally and health conscious farmer. Most of the meat in supermarkets has enormous quantities of growth hormones and antibiotics. The best meat for health eating comes from small farming communities or organic farms. Most local farmers’ markets have at least one meat vendor; get to know your local meat producers. And although they can be difficult to find these days, your local small butcher will probably have a better selection of meat than you’ll find at a big-box grocery store.
Whole wheat and whole grains should become a staple of your healthy eating routine because many nutrients are contained in the grain shell. Rice is the only exclusion from the rule – even though the rice grain shell is removed, many nutritional elements still remain in the rice grain.
What we eat become a part of us. Make your kitchen the starting point for your new healthy eating habits and enjoy preparing healthy meals.
Need More Help?
Do you have any healthy eating recipes you’d like to share or are looking for? Feel free to reach out to me through the contact form on the right or on my Contact page. I’d be happy to speak with you.
And don’t forget, if you aren’t sure of what you are doing in the kitchen but want to eat healthy, you can sign up for my FREE Cooking Basics how-to-tips! You’ll get an email every week for an entire year. That’s 52 helpful kitchen tips! Everything from how to make the perfect fried egg to different ways to prepare vegetables and how to freeze those fruits & veggies you find at the market 🙂
Enjoy and Be Healthy!