Friday, March 7, 2014

Healthy Eating Shopping Guide

Not sure what to buy when shopping for food? Want to make informed choices for a healthy diet? Here are a few suggestions and lists to help you stock up on nutritious foods. 

  • First, focus on your vegetables. Buy a rainbow of colors to get both a variety of flavors and nutrients.
  • Buy local produce for the freshest, in-season foods.
  • Go for whole ingredients, ones without a factory label.
  • Choose lean proteins like nuts, beans, grass-fed meat, pastured chicken and eggs.
  • Avoid processed and refined foods (e.g. refined white sugar, oils and flour). Only buy products that list five ingredients or less. Read the labels, you should be able to pronounce and know what each ingredient is. If it sounds like a chemical, it most likely IS, not something you want to eat!

healthy fats
Heathy fats are necessary for skin, nail and hair health; energy; vitamin absorption and normal every day functions. They protect against diseases, increase brain function, reduce blood pressure, and lower cholesterol.

• Avocado • Nuts (especially walnuts)
• Coconut                                           • Oils: Coconut, Olive, Sesame
• Fish• Olives
• Ghee• Seeds (especially flax)

whole grains
There are three parts to a grain: the bran, the endosperm and the germ. White flour (and all foods containing white flour) is ultra-processed wheat that has been stripped of the bran and the germ, thus depleting its nutritional value. Opt for these unprocessed whole grains instead:

• Barley • Amaranth
• Bulgur / Coucous                            • Brown Rice
• Kamut • Buckwheat
• Rye• Cornmeal
• Spelt • Millet
• Wheat Berries• Oats

• Quinoa
  • Wild Rice

*Always check the label to ensure there
is no cross-contamination with gluten-containing
grains during growing, harvesting or processing. 

eat the rainbow!
Not only is eating a spectrum of vibrant vegetables appetizingly cheerful and beautiful, it also ensures that your body is getting all the right nutrients. Consuming this variety can strengthen your immune system, reduce risk of diseases and illnesses, and build a strong body and mind. Follow this one simple rule, whether for a juice, salad, snack, or a soup: Check to see that all colors are included to make for a wholesome, naturally nutritious meal. For each meal, fill half your plate with veggies first to ensure you are getting enough nutrients each day.

Foods highlighted in bold indicate “THE DIRTY DOZEN” (Conventionally grown crops with high levels of pesticides).
Underlined foods indicate “THE CLEAN 15” (Conventionally grown crops with the lowest pesticide residue).

To naturally clean produce, combine 1 Tablespoon (15 ml) of apple cider vinegar with 1 cup (240 ml) water in a bowl. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, moving the produce around a couple of times for the vinegar to clean all surfaces. Remove and rinse very well. Let produce air-dry completely before storing.

seafood buying guide
The most eco-friendly choices for a sustainable future from the Environmental Defense Fund and

• Arctic Char (farmed)• Halibut (US Pacific)
• Albacore (US, Canada)• Mahi Mahi (US troll/pole caught)
• Atlantic Mackerel (Canada)• Pacific Sardines (US & Canada)
• Barramundi (US)• Sablefish / Black cod (Alaska, Canada)
• Bass (Trap-caught)• Scallops (farmed)
• Clams, Mussels & Oysters• Squid; Longfin squid (US)
• Cod: Atlantic (imported hook & line)     • Wild Alaskan Salmon
• Crab: Dungeness & Stone (US)• Yellowfin tuna (US Atlantic troll/pole caught)
• Haddock (US Hook and Line)  

how to avoid GMO foods
Genetically-modified organisms (GMOs) are genetically engineered crops grown with toxic chemicals and pesticides which are harmful to animals, humans, and the environment. The most common genetically modified foods are soybeans (and soy products), corn (for cattle feed and high fructose corn syrup), canola, sugar and milk (from cows treated with bovine growth hormone).

  • Buy organic.
  • Buy grass-fed or pastured meats, eggs and dairy.
  • Buy local
  • Learn how to identify GMO produce. Look at the little stickers on your produce. They tell you whether the fruit or vegetables is conventional, organic or genetically modified (GMO). The 4 digits stand for conventional produce (4011 is a conventionally grown banana). Add a 9 in front of this and it’s organic (94011). Add an 8 in front and it’s genetically modified (84011). GMOs are the ones to avoid!
  • Look for this labels like these on food packaging:

"Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food."
– Hippocrates

save our planet!
A plastic bag takes 400 -1,000 years to break down in the environment and poses a threat to thousands of birds and marine mammals. Shop wisely and DON’T FORGET TO BRING YOUR OWN SHOPPING BAGS!

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