Blog: “How Healthy is Your Grocery List?”

September 14, 2015

Good nutrition starts with our shopping choices.  Healthy food choices at home can only be made when healthy food is available.  A healthy food shopping list not only ensures that there is nutritious food to eat, but it also helps avoid impulse buying that leads to unhealthy eating later on.  When approached as a 'planning guide for better health', the list creates focus and results in saved time and money.  
Michael Pollan;s book, In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto, sums up all that he knows about food and health in seven words: "Eat food, not too much, mostly plants."  He offers five rules that can help us in our shopping:
1.  Don't eat anything your great grandmother wouldn't recognize as food.​


2.  Don’t eat anything with more than five ingredients, or ingredients you can't      



3.  Stay out of the middle of the supermarket; shop on the perimeter of the store.​


4.  Don't eat anything that won't eventually rot.​


5.  Don't buy food where you buy your gasoline. In the U.S., 20% of food is eaten        in the car.


If you want to make your healthy grocery list even more valuable, add nutritional information.  What is the proper serving size and what is the fat, cholesterol, sodium and carbohydrate content per serving?  Or, color code the items on your list using the Stop & Go Grocery Guide system (by Dr. Steve Aldana, Maple Mountain Press, 2010).  Green = “Go!”  Yellow = “Proceed With Caution.”  And, red = “Stop!”  Green foods include: whole grains, plant oils, vegetables, fruits, nuts and legumes.  Yellow foods: fish, poultry, eggs and low-fat dairy.  Red foods should be used sparingly and include: red meat, butter, white rice, white bread, potatoes, pasta and sweets.  Evaluate how green your list appears and make changes as necessary.


Shop Healthy!


M. J. 


M. J. White is the creator of “LEAN Wellness”, which transforms work environments with a radically different bottom-up approach that inspires continuous improvement in health and wellbeing.  To learn more, visit the website at: or email M. J. directly at:

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