Losing Weight by Shopping SmartPosted: January 31, 2013 in Healthy Eating by Craig Primack MD FACP
OPTIFAST can make weight loss in Chandler or Scottsdale much simpler, but you won’t be able to rely on it forever. Once your meal replacement program has ended, it will be time to return to the world of normal foods, and this will mean cooking healthy, nutritious meals that help you maintain the progress you’ve made in your weight loss program.
Because every healthy meal begins with healthy ingredients, a well-stocked kitchen will take many trips to the grocery store, but most supermarkets are filled with as many tempting treats as they are with fresh and nutritious foods. To keep the good stuff in and the bad stuff out, you’ll need to learn how to make the most of your trips to the grocery store, and you can start by:
- Making a list (and sticking to it). You may already write out a list of necessities before heading to the grocery store, but problems usually don’t come from what you plan to buy—they come from the impulse buys, the temptingly unhealthy items that seductively find a way into your cart. Make it easier to buy only what you need by refusing to pick up anything outside the confines of your list. Plan your purchases meticulously, writing down every ingredient you’ll need to cook healthy meals for the week ahead. Buy only what you write down.
- Staying on the outer edges. Freshest foods tend to be the healthiest foods, so it helps to avoid the inner aisles of the supermarket where processed, prepackaged items are found. In most stores, the perimeter is home to the produce section, the dairy section, the meat section and the bakery, and this is where the bulk of your purchases should come from. Make sure your cart contains mostly fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains.
- Going on a full stomach. The sound of a grumbling belly can overwhelm your resistance to tempting foods. When you go grocery shopping on an empty stomach, everything seems delicious and inviting—as a result, you may go home with a few things that would be better left out of your diet. If you aren’t shopping just after a meal, try eating a nutritious snack before you shop to keep you from picking up free samples and other indulgences. An OPTIFAST ready-to-drink or a bar can help keep your decisions focused toward nutrition and not guided by hunger.
After you’ve reached your weight loss goals, the grocery store can be either your greatest ally or your worst enemy. Tips like these can help you keep it the former, but they aren’t the only ones. What else has helped you stay healthy at the supermarket after losing weight in Chandler or Scottsdale? Tell us in the comments below!