Like any other business, supermarkets are set up to make a profit. Knowing your way around the place will give you a better chance of buying healthier items and wasting less time. Since grocery stores are somewhere most of us visit weekly, it’s definitely in our best interest to learn some navigation tips! I made this map to illustrate a common layout of a supermarket. This map is actually based on the Stop & Shop I use.
Keep to the Perimeter (green areas on the map)- this is where the healthiest freshest foods are found.
- Choose a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables
- Opt for whole grain baked goods i.e. whole wheat, rye, multi-grain
- Select lean (low fat) meats
- Go for low fat dairy products (skim or 1%)
- If you like juice once in a while, choose 100% fruit juices
The dry food aisles (red area on the map) have some nutritional foods but be careful and read the labels:
- For breads, make sure the first ingredient is whole wheat flour
- Choose cereal with at least 3g fiber per serving and watch the added sugar
- Frozen veggies and fruit are just as good as fresh (and sometimes better since they’re usually picked at their prime). Make sure the ingredients are just fruit with nothing added. I always have frozen produce on hand!
It is helpful to know what you need going in and try to stick to your shopping list. This will ensure a quicker healthier trip. Healthy shopping!