We can all agree that nutrition starts with smart choices in the grocery store. It would be hard to cook a healthy meal if you don’t have the right ingredients in your kitchen. However, who has the time to read all the food labels and figure out the most nutritious food in the groceries. Buying groceries can be a daunting task because there are so many choices available for you.
Chicago grocery stores offer customers a lot of authentic ingredients, food products, and household items from different countries. At most times, these international food markets are owned by family businesses and a stem from immigrants with dynamic cultural traditions. Not only can customers get delicious food at the lowest price, but they can also serve as sanctuaries for urban immigrants to reconnect with their homes.
Plan ahead and have a list.
The first step, and probably the most important one, is to have a list. This way, you can have a successful food mart trip. Having a list will ensure that you have the healthy foods that you need at home. Hopefully, this means that you made a meal plan as well. A list will help you get organized and save you time and money by reducing the number of trips to the grocery stores. You can create a list on paper, phone, or an app. Some food markets in Chicago have their own app that you can use to make a list.
Look for new foods.
Whenever we do our groceries, we often end up with the same items on our cart. Exploring new food such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes can be a great idea. It is best to try something different, like going to a Polish grocery store in Chicago and getting pierogi or another type of Polish food. Maybe trying out one new food per week will be a good start. A variety of whole foods helps to increase nutrient intake without added sugar, fat, or sodium.
Fill half your cart with produce.
Thinking about your cart like a plate is essential. A good plate should have ½ non-starchy vegetables. If you want to eat more vegetables, you would need to purchase more vegetables on your groceries. It is best to look for a variety of colors to increase phytonutrients, which can help prevent disease and keep your body functioning at its peak. In order to save time preparing for vegetables at home, purchase vegetables that are fresh or frozen for a quick vegetable addition. Ensure that you don’t ignore the fruits because they raise glucose and should be included as a daily choice for people with diabetes. You can find all these things in your grocery stores or Polish store in Chicago.
Try different stores or local farmers markets.
If you go to different grocery stores in Chicago, you have different choices. When shopping at one store, you won’t have a lot of variety. Wholesale club stores have healthy options, while farmer’s markets will have seasonal local produce. The more the choices, the more nutrients that you have to choose from.
Before leaving a specific food market, make sure to have a small snack, so you aren’t shopping hungry. This also helps to avoid impulse buys. Remember what’s in your cart will most likely end up in your stomach. Always think healthy!