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How To Optimize Your Grocery Shopping

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How To Optimize Your Grocery Shopping

When people think of buying healthy foods there is often an association with higher costs.  Going into the produce section of a grocery store can be overwhelming especially when you are trying to save money.  It’s much easier to buy a big bag of chips for one dollar that could give you something to snack on for the next few days, over a bag of apples that might be four dollars. In this article, I will be giving you some tips as to what to do when you go grocery shopping so you can buy healthier food for less than you think!

The first thing to understand is the psychology behind a grocery store, the placement of the different departments is not random. It is all very clever marketing designed to have you, the consumer, buy more. Typically, flowers will be in the very front of a store this gives the feeling of homeliness and helps enhance the image of the store to the consumer.  Next will typically be produce, this is to show the freshness of the products that the store has to offer.  The bakery will also typically be in the corner of the supermarket, this often is used to make the consumer hungry so they will purchase more food.  Dairy, meat, and egg products are on the side and the back of the store. This is specifically put towards the back as it will make the person overbuy as they won’t want to make multiple trips to the back of the store.

When it comes to the center aisles this is where you will find chips, rice, seasoning, and most of your shopping products. These aisles are also very cleverly put together with name brands and more expensive brands being put in what’s called the “bulls’ eye” zone. This is the 2nd and 3rd shelves from the top, as it is in the person’s immediate vision. More cheap and local brands are typically below this zone.

Now that we have a basic understanding of the marketing of a grocery store, let's go over some tips as to how to save money and get more healthy foods when shopping.

  1. Have A Plan- Most people will have a list when they go to the grocery store, but when walking through something may come up so they end up buying more than originally planned.  To work on this, make your list as detailed as possible and put in any and all ingredients you may need, put EVERYTHING down on your plan. If detailed and concise you will not have to buy more than your budget.
  2. There Is No “BEST” Form of Produce- Too often people look at fresh produce and think it’s too expensive. You can get the same nutritional value through frozen vegetables and fruit and is often a lot less expensive. When it comes to canned fruits and veggies the nutritional content is the same as fresh as well the only difference is added salt to preserve it. Fortunately, if you use a strainer and rinse the canned food with water you can remove a lot of the excess sodium.
  3. Read The Nutrition Label- Look at the serving size, this is the most important item to read first as all the other nutrients are based on it.  Also, a lot of foods that look “healthy” may have added sugars to them, be aware of what you are buying.  Try to keep away from foods with added sugars, trans fats, and if buying a grain try to get whole wheat.
  4. Store Flyer/Reward Card- One of the easiest ways you can save money is find out if your store has a rewards card or any sales.  Supermarkets will often give out member reward cards as well as have sales, take advantage of these so you can save money on immediate or future purchases.
  5. Compare Unit Prices- If you have the time, try to break down the cost of food to how much it costs per serving.  While something may have a lower purchase price when you break down and compare how much a serving size costs, you will save money purchasing the item that costs less per serving.  Also, look for store brand items instead of name brand items as they will often cost less but are essentially the same.

 

Happy Shopping! Contact us at Genesis Personal Fitness for all your health & fitness related needs.

 


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