How you shop can make a difference in balancing your blood sugar rollercoaster. Let’s consider what you are eating from another perspective, and make a change by mindful shopping. Choose groceries with purpose.
What Is Mindless Shopping?
Mindless grocery shopping… ever done it? You know, when you habitually grab this and that and plunk it into the cart without much of a thought? Perhaps you glance at the nutritional information, but only to count the calories and make a split second decision as to whether or not the food is “good” or “bad” for you.
This is typical of mindlessness. It happens when you operate out of routine because the mind is off and running in fifty different directions. There isn’t any real presence in the moment.
Make a change. Breathe. Slow down. Shop with purpose. Here’s how.
1. Go Mindful Shopping This Week
Set aside 60 minutes to shop at your favorite store. Time yourself on your phone or in some way to make you accountable. Make an agreement with yourself that whatever goes in your cart is composed of ingredients that are natural.
2. Count Chemicals NOT Calories!
The idea is to crowd out foods with a high chemical content in favor of foods that are nutritious and promote high energy. Look at the nutritional information in another way. Focus on the ingredients.
The more nutritious foods have a shorter ingredient list and more energy for you. Likewise, the closer the food is to the farmer, the more energy you will derive from it.
Chemicals are meant to elongate shelf life, not your life!
Food As Nature Intended
In nature, there is a pyramid of energy associated with food. Food chains begin with green plants at the pyramid’s base as they have the highest energy available.
Consumers feeding directly on plants are herbivores (from the Latin “herb” meaning “plant” and “vore” meaning “to eat”) and are found at the next level up. Organisms who feed on herbivores are carnivores (“carn” meaning “flesh”), and are arranged as first-, second- or third-order based on whether they eat another carnivore or an herbivore. Omnivores (“omni” meaning “all”) round out the group; feasting on carnivores, herbivores and plants.
The Best Food For Energy
Organisms in nature choose foods that have the highest level of energy available to them. For this reason, a lion doesn’t hunt a mouse! The lion is innately aware that the amount of energy expended to get the mouse will be in excess of the energy the mouse will actually provide. Lions hunt big game.
3. Hunt For Real Food
We would do well to follow the lead of the lion when planning our meals. Choosing foods that are high energy as opposed to the synthetic foods that spike blood sugar, and counting the chemicals in our choices instead of the calories.
4. Start In The “No Label” Section
Ever notice how there aren’t any labels in the produce aisle? The ingredients in a banana are … well… banana. That’s about as uncomplicated as it gets.
Your mindful shopping starts here. Fill up your cart from this section. Stuck for ideas? Start with what you know, like a basic salad. Then:
- Create a new recipe around a fruit or vegetable this week.
- Add berries and grapes to salad greens.
- Cut up an orange and add the sections along with raspberries.
- Pears and blueberries are well mated on a bed of arugula; apples, avocado and cheddar on butter lettuce.
- Nuts and seeds like almonds, walnuts, chia, flax and sunflower add crunch and the added benefit of Omega-3 and protein.
- Tame the bite of a radish with the sweetness of snow peas and pineapple.
5. Then Look For Other “No Ingredients Listed” Foods
Bump up nutrition with:
- Other protein sources like beef or pork
Slow down and be mindful of the array of goodies that are available to you. Be curious and notice what foods you are choosing to fuel your body. Your body will thank you.