Looking after our bodies and our gut health starts with what we eat. That said navigating the aisles at the grocery store is not an easy task, with so many misleading claims, messages and confusing labelling!
I know how much effort it is – so here are a few simple rules to follow that will keep your basket stocked with all the right food to keep your gut and body in great shape:
Write a Shopping List
If you plan ahead and budget before you get to the store – the chances are you will spend less and make smarter choices. Before you head out try to plan your meals for the week and create a list to help you shop. It will probably take a few minutes but will save you time and money in the store – and save on low quality and damaging foods (and waste!).
Shop the Edge of the Store First
At the grocery store – do as much of your shopping around the edge of the store as you can – avoiding the middle aisles – where all the processed food is stored – as much as possible. This way your shopping basket will be full of fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, whole grains and fresh meat – and you can keep the harmful processed foods to a minimum.
Load up on Probiotics & Prebiotics
Load up on Probiotics, Fibre and resistant starch – all the key ingredients for a healthy gut. Fermented foods such as natural yoghurts, cheeses, kimchi and sauerkraut are all great sources of healthy probiotic cultures, while legumes, whole grains, fruits and vegetables !are rich in prebiotic fibre & resistant starch.
Avoid Fruit Juices – Instead Choose Fermented Drinks
Fruit juices contain high levels of sugar – bad for your health and your gut. Instead try Kefir and kombucha – both excellent alternatives that increase the amount of good bacteria in your digestive tract, and also support weight loss, better skin, and increased immunity.
Choose Fruit & Veg & Whole Grains High in Soluble Fibre
Choose fruits and vegetables high in soluble fibre. Vegetables such as bananas, asparagus, almonds, garlic, kiwi, leeks, mushrooms, leafy greens, onions, and Jerusalem artichokes are especially high in soluble fibre. Choose a variety of colorful fresh produce, different colors reflect different nutrient content.
Breads, Cereals, and Pasta also provide a great opportunity to add more much needed fibre to your diet – but be careful to choose whole grain foods, such as sour dough and wholemeal breads and pastas. Quinoa, bulgur, and barley are also great tasty foods high in fibre to add to your diet
Avoid anything with added sugar and bight colourful packaging and be wary of any food that is preprepared or ready to eat.
Don’t Stop on an Empty Stomach
Don’t shop on an empty stomach. When you are hungry, junk foods are harder to resist. Shop when your appetite is satisfied so you can make the best food choices