Make a shopping list. If you keep a running list at home of items that need to be replaced, you won’t have to worry about forgetting anything. Use this sample grocery list.
Shop the perimeter of the store. The freshest and best foods are generally located around the outside aisles (or perimeter) of the store. You may need to go to specific aisles for other healthy items such as canned beans, nuts and natural peanut butter, dried fruit, and high fiber cereal, although these are sometimes found along the perimeter also.
The fewer ingredients listed on the label the better. Understand nutrition labels to help you make healthier choices.
Try shopping at a local Farmer’s Market. Find an Indiana farmer’s market near you.
Try the store brands. Check the contents -- they’re cheaper than brand names and often just as good.
Compare prices. For the price of a large bag of chips and a box of cookies, you can buy a lot of apples, bananas, carrots, potatoes, peppers, and other healthier foods.
Practice batch cooking. Cook a large amount and divide it into family-size portions, label it and freeze to eat later in the month.
Look for what’s in season. Seasonal fresh fruits and vegetables are often less expensive than those from different climates.
Join a community garden group and learn how to grow foods on your own.
Half cup equals: 5 broccoli florets, 16 grapes, 1 large plum, 6 baby carrots, 4 large strawberries, 1 medium cantaloupe wedge.
Be aware of how food is prepared. Choose baked, braised, broiled, grilled, poached, roasted or steamed over fried, battered, crispy or breaded.
Ask questions. Many restaurants honor requests, so don't be afraid to make special requests that meet your nutritional needs.
Substitute. Ask for a side salad, fruit or steamed veggies to replace fries in a combination meal.
Take half. Before digging in, get half your meal wrapped up to go.
Ask for dressing and sauces on the side.
Eat slowly. It takes about 20 minutes for your brain to get the message from your stomach that you are no longer hungry. Fast eaters often are overeaters, while slow eaters tend to eat less and are still satisfied.