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A Guide to Smart Grocery Shopping for Healthy Eating


A Guide to Smart Grocery Shopping for Healthy Eating

Making smart choices at the grocery store can help you maintain a nutritious diet while sticking to a budget. In this, we’ll provide you with tips and advice on how to shop at the grocery store to make healthier and more affordable choices.

Plan Ahead

  • Make a list: Write down the food you need before going to the store. This will help you stay focused and avoid buying unhealthy food.
  • Plan your meals: Plan your meals for the week in advance. Include healthy options like fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains.
  • Include snacks: Don’t forget to include snacks to keep your blood sugar normal between meals.

Shop Smart

  • Shop the outside aisles: Spend more time in the outer aisles where you’ll find fresh food, lean meats, and dairy products.
  • Choose cheap protein sources: Look for budget-friendly protein sources like eggs, canned tuna or salmon, chicken thighs, and beans.
  • Embrace frozen and canned products: Go for frozen or reduced sodium, no added sugar canned fruits and vegetables. Be aware of canned products that 
  • Beware of canned products with syrups: Sometimes foods are packed in syrups, which are sugary liquids that make them taste sweet. Examples of canned items with syrups include fruits like peaches, pears, or pineapples. Instead, look for items labeled “packed in water”, “unsweetened”, or “in their own juice”. 

Make Informed Choices

  • Read food labels: Look for items with lower added sugars, sodium, and unhealthy fats. Aim for foods with whole food ingredients.
  • Compare prices and look for sales: Take the time to compare prices and consider shopping at discount or bulk stores.
  • Use coupons: Take advantage of coupons and store loyalty programs to save money.

Stick to Your Budget

  • Set a budget: Create a budget for your groceries and stick to it as best as you can. Plan your meals and make a list based on what you need.
  • Avoid unnecessary items: Resist buying unnecessary items or processed snacks high in sugar and sodium. 

Shop Wisely

  • Don’t shop when hungry: Avoid shopping on an empty stomach. It may lead to buying less healthy choices.
  • Stay organized: Create your shopping list and stick to it.

This not that…

Food Category Premade Option Healthier Alternative Aisle
Canned Fruits Canned Fruits in Syrup Canned Fruits in Water or 100% Juice Canned Goods Aisle
Canned Beans Canned Beans in Sauce Low-Sodium Canned Beans in Water Canned Goods Aisle
Breakfast Cereal Sugary Cereals Whole Grain Cereals with No Added Sugar Cereal Aisle
Yogurt Flavored Yogurt Plain Greek Yogurt with Fresh Berries Dairy or Yogurt Aisle
Salad Dressings Bottled Salad Dressings Homemade Salad Dressings with Olive Oil Condiments Aisle
Condensed Milk Sweetened Condensed Milk Unsweetened Condensed Milk Baking Aisle
Packaged Snacks Packaged Snack Cakes or Cookies Fresh Fruit, Nuts, or Whole Grain Crackers Snack Aisle
Spices Pre-packaged Spice Blends Individual Spices: ex. Cumin, Paprika, Cinnamon, Turmeric, Oregano Baking or Spices Aisle
Salsas/Sauces Pre-made Salsas or Sauces Fresh Salsas or Homemade Sauces Produce or Condiments Aisle

Shopping smart in the grocery store is an important step toward managing gestational diabetes while on a budget. By following these tips, you can make nutritious choices that support your health and the health of your baby. Remember, you are doing a good job! Taking small steps towards a healthier lifestyle is a big win. Happy shopping, and take care of yourself and your little one!


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