Diets tend to go south as soon as people enter grocery stores. The tempting array of goodies that line supermarket shelves is often too much for the average dieter to take. There’s also the incredible challenge of learning to see beyond the claims that food manufacturers make in order to identify the absolute healthiest and most nutrient-dense options. Following are five, simple strategies for outsmarting the supermarket and dropping pounds.
Never Shop on an Empty Stomach
This is an age-old rule that many people still overlook. If your stomach is rumbling even before you enter the store, don’t expect yourself to have the willpower to withstand the cloying aroma of the fresh-baked pastries at the bakery counter. Munch on a banana before heading out or have a small cup of yogurt. If you have absolutely no food in your home to knock the edge off your hunger, purchase a quick, simple snack at the supermarket and take the time to enjoy it before traversing the store. Once your blood sugar levels have normalized and your belly has stopped crying out for food, you’ll be able to make sensible, rational decisions about what goes into your cart.
Avoid Convenience Foods
One of the hardest parts of shopping for foods that support and promote weight loss is reading and discerning food labels. Foods that have no added ingredients such as rice, apples, bananas, chicken, fish, eggs and milk, should represent the largest portion of the goods in your cart. Food products, however, are representative of ready-made foods that have multiple ingredients and often confusing labels. Steer clear of food products that have ingredients you can’t pronounce or that have more than five ingredients in total. These are commonly referred to as convenience foods and they often have massive amounts of hidden sodium, calories, sugar and fat. It is always best to stick to basic, natural foods and to make your own food products at home. Not only will you avoid preservatives, extra fat and extra calories by doing so, but you can also save a significant amount of cash with this virtually fool-proof weight loss strategy.
Curb Your Appetite and Your Cravings Naturally
Make sure that you’re hydrated before heading out to the store. Feelings of hunger can actually be a sign of thirst, especially if you’ve already eaten. Your body will cry out for fluids in a number of surprising ways once it becomes hydrated. Sipping at a bottle of fresh water throughout the day will keep you from picking up snacks that you don’t actually need while shopping in-store. You can also take advantage of appetite suppressants like the Garcinia Cambogia featured on Dr. Oz show. This powerful weight loss supplement will keep you clear-headed and rational in-store by minimizing cravings and temptations all day long. This is an excellent weight loss resource for dieters who are constantly falling prey to their own, insufficient willpower and who regularly struggle with cravings for salty, sugary or fatty foods.
Buy Yourself Something Sweet
Never try to leave the store with little else than dark, leafy greens and a few lean cuts of meat. Your diet has to be colorful, rich with different flavors and textures and interesting enough to maintain over the long term. No healthy, manageable diet will leave you feeling deprived. As such, your shopping cart should always contain a few, sumptuous treats that will sate your sweet tooth, without expanding your waistline. Before you head out to the store, spend some time researching recipes for top-rated, low-calorie desserts or reading reviews of food options that other dieters cannot get enough of. Whether you buy tart, real-fruit sorbets, squares of real, salted dark chocolate or creamy, Greek-style yogurts that have been sweetened with honey, these things will give you the sense of satiety that all people need for staying true to their diet plans.
You may find it easier to make healthful food choices that are best in line with your weight loss goals if you opt to shop alone. Heading to the store with a close friend who still loads up on low-value, empty-calorie foods could be disastrous, particularly if you’re still in the formative stages of your diet and struggling to increase your willpower. Shopping on your own will give you time to consider your choices at a leisurely pace and without any outside intervention. Once your new lifestyle choices have become sufficient ingrained to be considered new life habits, you can shop with who you want, when you want, without worrying about how another person’s unhealthy attitudes and dietary practices might impact your own.
So, go shopping and outsmart the supermarket, that’s the first step in you dieting!