WATCH: If you’re trying to lose weight or eat more healthily you need to know how to shop. Perimeter shopping is the new buzz word. Here are some tips that could ensure your success.

Have you ever consciously thought about how you navigate your supermarket when you’re shopping for food or do you just rush up and down the aisles?

If you’re trying to lose weight or eat more healthily, this is worth thinking about.

Mostly shopping in the middle aisles, may result in loading up on processed, chemical ridden foods that are high in calories, sodium, fat and cholesterol.

Shop along the perimeter of the grocery store, where fresh foods like fruits, vegetables, dairy, meat and fish are usually located. Avoid the centre aisles where junk foods lurk. Choose “real” foods, such as 100% fruit juice or 100% whole-grain items with as little processing and as few additives as possible.

Shop for healthy dried and canned goods in the middle aisles – rice, pasta, oatmeal, legumes (dried and canned), canned tomato and tuna, flour, spices, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, peanut butter, coffee and tea as well as olive and other healthy oils.

The frozen sections also carry healthy options like frozen fruit, vegetables and fish.

Plan your grocery shopping

It’s not a good idea to walk up and down the aisles unprepared and never go grocery shopping if you’re hungry. The temptation to buy items you don’t need is just too great.

Plan the meals you want to make and compile a shopping list that reflects your budget, health aspirations, time frame and cooking abilities. Avoid going on a fad diet tangent and buying expensive items that you are not familiar with and will probably never use.

When making your list, group all similar ingredients together to minimize your risk of forgetting an item. If you shop at the same supermarket you know the layout of the store, which makes it a lot easier. Put all your vegetables and fruit in one column, all the meat and seafood in another and group the dairy, dry and canned goods together respectively.

Avoid prepackaged meals and highly processed foodstuffs and snacks. Supermarkets place items strategically for maximum sales. Stick to your list.

WATCH: Shopping the Perimetre – Mayo Clinic

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