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Family Living Focus: Healthy food shopping Do’s and Don’ts

Start the new year off right by making healthy choices when shopping. Try the following dos and don’ts.

Do view nutrition labels. Remember: Any food called “healthy” needs to contain at least 10% of the Daily Value for one of several important nutrients (in addition to being low in fat, saturated fat, sodium, and cholesterol).

Don’t forget fiber’s finest. Load up on whole-grain breads, rolls and cereals, as well as brown rice and dried beans.

Do go for the greenest. When buying salad greens, select those deepest in color – dark greens and reds. Why: The dark color means beta-carotene and other carotenoids, vitamin C, folic acid, calcium and other nutrients are present.

Don’t dismiss frozen produce. Some frozen fruits and vegetables contain just as many nutrients as fresh produce – sometimes more. Example: According to one study, frozen green beans have about twice the vitamin C as fresh beans that sat on display and in a refrigerator for nearly a week.

Do take care with frozen meals. Choose frozen meals that contain less than 10 grams of fat and the least amount of sodium and cholesterol.

Don’t pass up pasta. It is high in protein and contains B vitamins and iron.

More Do’s: Never shop on an empty stomach. Choose fruit “juices” instead of fruit “drinks.” Buy skinless poultry. Remember that a standard serving of meat or fish should fit on a pack of playing cards.

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If you would like more information on “Healthy Shopping Do’s and Don’ts” feel free to contact Gail Gilman, Family Life Consultant, M.Ed., C.F.C.S. and Professor Emeritus – University of Minnesota at waldn001@umn.edu. Be sure to watch for more Family Living Focus™ information in next week’s paper.

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