I was recently caught in a long line in my local grocery store waiting for checkout. This gave me an opportunity to look around and observe my fellow shoppers and what was in their carts.
The lady in front of me had 4 two liter bottles of soda in the bottom of her cart, along with a 6 pack of Pepsi. There were 2 bags of chips, two packs of hot dogs along with hotdog buns. There were several frozen dinners, pizzas, boxed macaroni and cheese, a box of donuts, a loaf of white bread, and some bologna. She was a person grossly obese, with difficulty breathing, and needed assistance with ambulation by using a cane.
The man waiting in back of me had just a few items, including a bag of organic apples, skinless chicken breasts, some romaine lettuce and a couple of sweet potatoes. He was a tall, lean, and fit man, and I would guess in his sixties.
These two examples just reinforce that food is a major contributor to our health. What we eat matters. The lady in the first example purchased nothing but sugar, salt, and fatty processed items with little nutritional value. There were no whole foods.
The man purchased all whole foods, lean meats, organic fruit, and lower glycemic index potatoes. He obviously was interested in eating foods with good nutritional value. And it showed.
Navigating the grocery store is an art. There are land mines everywhere you go as they lure you to buy products of questionable value. The absolute best advice is to work the perimeter of the store. This is where the fruits and vegetables, meats, dairy, and breads are located. Everything in between is processed foods, sugary drinks, frozen meals, ice cream, chips, canned goods. The next best advice is to look for whole foods. Look at the nutritional labels. If you can’t pronounce the words or recognize the ingredients, stay away from it. The more ingredients, the more chemicals and preservatives.
So, what’s in your cart?