Food shopping is part of keeping a healthy diet and a positive lifestyle but it is not an easy task. Having the diabetes management voice whispering in your ears makes it even harder.
Knowing what you are eating and planning your meals ahead is a great start for a balanced and improved diet.
Behaviour changes start slowly and when people become more aware of what they are buying and start reading food labels. I started with small food changes to beat diabetes. Now it is time to go all the way with your food shopping habits.
Knowledge is power, and knowing what food items to buy is a very important activity to keep to better manage your diabetes.
Diabetes management starts with food shopping
Here are five tips to improve your food shopping and your food choices.
Also, in the end of the article you can download a shopping list that can help you to keep a healthy and balanced shopping basket, control your cravings or maybe try something you never thought of taking home.
Eat before you go to the supermarket
Shopping with an empty stomach is a big enemy of quality shopping. Eat before you go to the supermarket to avoid to be tempted to buy unhealthy and unnecessary items.
Read the food labels
Reading the labels is always crucial. Read the quantities of carbs and sugar and also calories and saturated fat on the labels on the back.
If you are in a hurry, look at the traffic labels (right image) on the front of the package instead.
From there, choose the one item with more greens on it.
Reading the labels makes all the process a bit slower but I assure you you will see some surprising findings.
Plan your weekly meals ahead
If you stick with a list and a plan it is more likely that you will control the money you waste and your urge to buy something that you really don’t need.
Start shopping in vegetables and fruits section
Star shopping from the fruit and vegetable section, to the meal and fish, etc.
I call this shopping by relevance and you’ll get to a point of tiredness and just want to finish it.
You end up with what you really need in your basket and won’t waste time in the soft-drinks/chocolates/not-so-healthy section.
Avoid ready meals
Ready made meals are very handy but really unhealthy.
Take your time to read the labels of those and you will understand how much sugar it has on it. Look at how many names of additives and others you do not know what they are.
I’m 100% supportive of homemade food. Homemade food is healthier, you know what you are eating and have control over the recipe: no tricks or hidden ingredients.
Next time you go shopping, keep in mind all these tips. Improve your diabetes management while improving you food choices and shopping!
Because you diabetes management starts even before you eat anything.