Considering a change in your diet?  This seemed a little overwhelming when I began my journey.  Luckily a friend advised me to go slow, keep it simple and just do what you can to alter where you spend your food dollars.  Not sure where to start?  Below are some steps to consider when looking to increase the quality of food you are buying and consuming.  Consider these options on how to shop for a healthy diet as you begin your journey to better food.

Raw food

Shop the edges of your grocery store for the least processed foods.

A.  Fast food  part of your diet? 

  1. Start tracking the amount of money spent each week eating out.
  2. Internet search for fun ways to pack your (or the kids) own lunch.
  3. Decide what you would do with the money saved by eating out less.

B.  How to make better selections at your current grocery store:

  1. Shop the edges, stay away from the center of the store.
  2. When you venture into the center, check ingredients!  I try to avoid products containing:
    • High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)
    • Monosodium glutamate (MSG)
    • Sugar (at least not as the first ingredient)

      store_center

      Be careful as you shop the center of your grocery store!

    • Ingredients listed as “enriched, refined or bleached”
    • Items you cannot read
  3. Look for produce displayed as “organic”, the price difference may be less than you think.
  4. Some stores may have an area devoted to a “health mart”, explore your options.
  5. If your current grocery store does not carry organic items talk to the manager or try another store.

Take your time with the changes suggested above.  Track your dollars and see the difference in food quality.  Consider keeping a log of how you “feel” from these little changes in your diet.

C.   Ready to adventure a little further?
  1. Look for a specialty health store in your area.
  2. Specialty stores labeled as “organic”, “natural”, “holistic” or “raw”.
  3. Again shop the edges of these stores, adventure in to the center more freely but keep checking ingredients.
D.  Seasonally watch for Farmer Markets or local farm stands.
  1. If you haven’t tried interacting with real farmers before you may feel a little un easy, but give it a try, the food quality is worth it!
  2. Quiz the individual sellers, learn their lingo and start to build relationships.
    • Ask them to describe their production practices.
    • Find out if you can visit their farm.
    • Ask how else they sell their products:
      • directly from farm, website, Community Supported Agricultural (CSA) buying option?
E.  Ask others for leads.
  1. Someone at church selling farm fresh eggs or know someone who does?
  2. Co-worker maybe buying his meat directly from a farmer?
  3. Watch for Fresh Eggs or Fresh Honey signs as you drive through the country.

F.  Search the internet.

Please share any other ideas you may have, and here’s to good eating!

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