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You can only overeat unhealthy foods if you stock them in your kitchen. But old habits are hard to break; you buy what you buy at the store because it’s what you’re used to, or what your family likes. Until you give your kitchen an overhaul, though, and diet-proof your pantry, weight loss and healthy eating habits are going to remain elusive.
It’s important to admit your weaknesses regarding diet – we all have them, and those who understand them are the ones who are more likely to implement healthy habits and shun the bad ones. For instance, if you know you can’t eat just one or two potato chips, then it’s probably a good idea not to have them in your house.
So what do you do? How can you diet-proof your kitchen? Here are some tips that may help, starting with a list of foods to avoid buying. Keep this list in mind when you make your grocery list…because you are making a list, aren’t you? That’s one of the keys to beginning the diet-proofing of your kitchen!
Foods to Avoid Buying
This is only a partial list which is meant to act as a springboard – listing all unhealthy foods not to buy would take volumes! This list focuses on foods that tend to be “go to” foods when you have a craving, or foods you may just be buying for their convenience or out of habit.
1. Peanut butter that’s been highly processed with added fat and sugar
2. Toaster pastries
3. Potato chips
4. Ice cream (especially rich, fatty ice cream with lots of added ingredients)
6. Packaged cakes (such as those individually wrapped ones)
7. Shortening or lard (if you don’t have it on hand, you can’t reach for it to bake an impromptu batch of midnight cookies)
8. Foods that contain high fructose corn syrup
9. Sugary drinks (colas)
10. Sugary cereals
11. Fatty cuts of meat, such as ground chuck or “marbled” beef roast or stew meat
12. Fatty dips, spreads, and salad dressings
Foods to Stock Up On
Here is a partial list of foods to have on hand:
1. Cut-up vegetables with low-calorie dip
2. Whole wheat tortillas
3. Fresh fruit (frozen grapes are especially good for sweet cravings)
4. Nuts (raw without added fat)
5. Healthy oils
6. No-sugar-added condiments like jelly and jam
7. Whole wheat bagels
8. Low-fat cream cheese
9. Low-fat yogurt
11. Fresh garlic
12. Flavorful, low-calorie condiments, herbs and spices, such as mustard, hot sauce, salt-free spice mixes, etc.
13. Frozen fish fillets
We all know that fruits and vegetables are essential parts of a healthy diet. The vitamins and nutrients from them helps make the body stronger and can boost the immune system. Each fruit and vegetable has its own natural properties that are beneficial. For instance, a tomato has antioxidant properties that help cleanse the body of toxins and free radicals. It is great for preventing cancer too.
You can easily find fruits and vegetables in the grocery store. But how do you choose the good ones from the bad ones? Read on for some great tips.
Tips for Finding Good Produce:
Oranges– Good oranges are firm, heavy and have a smooth texture. Do not buy oranges that are lightweight, dull, spongy, and have a rough texture.
Peaches– Good peaches are firm and plump. It should be white or yellow in color with a red blush. Do not buy peaches that are very cushiony or shriveled.
Grapes- Good grapes are tender, plump, firmly attached to the stems and have a slight amber blush (green grapes). Bad grapes are brown in color, have a wrinkled surface and brittle stems.
Apricots– Good apricots have a uniform golden color and they are firm. Do not buy apricots that have a pale yellow or greenish color. Bad apricots can be very soft or very hard.
Cherry– Good cherries have new looking stems and a smooth and shiny surface. Bad cherries have dried steams and dull surfaces.
Cantaloupe- Good cantaloupes have a delicate aroma, yellowish skin and a thick texture on the rind. Do not buy cantaloupes with a sweet and pungent aroma as well as those with a soft rind.
Watermelon– Good watermelons are symmetrical in shape and have a cream-colored underside. Do not buy watermelons with cushiony spots.
Broccoli– Good broccoli is firm, have closed florets and have a deep green color. Do not buy broccoli that are yellow in color, with open florets and water-soaked spots.
Asparagus- Good asparagus have closed tips and straight green stalks. Bad asparagus have open tips and the stalks are curved.
Bell Pepper- Good bell peppers have bright and glossy skin. They are firm and thick while bad bell peppers have soft spots and shriveled surfaces.
Carrots– Good carrots are firm and have a bright orange color. Bad carrots have a rough texture, soft and have green roots.
Tomato– Good tomatoes are plump, smooth and have a rich red color. Bad tomatoes look shriveled and have blemishes.
Now that you know how to choose good produce, you will spend your money wisely. Do not rush choosing good produce though, take your time and make sure you buy the best, it will be worth it.