Clean grocery shopping

Clean grocery shopping

The grocery store is a wonderful place: thousands of ingredients and products at your fingertips available to combine, cook, and eat. However, that choice can be overwhelming: while shoppers in the 1970s chose from a mere 9,000 products, shoppers today choose from more than 47,000.

Most stores line the walls with the simplest of products: produce, the butcher, the bakery, dairy, etc. Aisles in the middle contain most of the processed foods that generally have additives and preservatives it's better to avoid. You can find unhealthy products in every department, but the departments around the perimeter of the store contain the most whole, simple ingredients.

First and foremost, buy local. This can be anything from the weekly farmer's market to a local bakery to local ingredients sourced by your grocery store. Smaller businesses are more likely to use safer practices when cultivating their goods. Buying local also reduces your carbon footprint. Imported ingredients contribute to fuel consumption and air pollution as they're flown in from overseas or driven across the country in a semi-truck. Local produce is fresher, often cleaner, and require less waste to get to you.

Purchase organic food when possible, as it's grown without pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, etc. If your budget doesn't allow for all things organic, don't sweat it: it's better to gain the nutrients of produce, organic or not, than to go without. If the fresh produce doesn't look good, opt for frozen fruits and vegetables: they're flash-frozen right after picking so often they are more fresh than the "fresh" produce, depending on where you live.

An easy way to eat cleanly is to eat simply. Shopping the perimeter of the store will already introduce you to many unprocessed foods - but the interior aisles have options too. Flour, nuts, dried fruits, beans and rice are all examples of whole foods.

Check the ingredients list. The simpler the ingredients, the better. If you don't recognize or can hardly read the ingredients, do without.

Studies have shown that entering the store with a set list of items to purchase reduces impulse purchases - most of which happen in the candy, cookies, and chips section.

Clean grocery shopping is not only what you buy, but also what you carry your groceries home in. Single-use plastic bags are unsustainable and end up littering our environment and clogging waterways. Many European countries have banned them, with some U.S. cities and states beginning to follow suit. If you don't already, bring bags from home. It is an easy transition to reduce your waste.

While many canned goods, especially fruits and vegetables, do not contain many ingredients, they contain a harmful by-product from their packaging: BPA.

Online grocery shopping continues to grow in popularity as the pandemic drags on. You can follow these same steps while shopping online.

Bulk purchases often save you money in terms of price per ounce, and reduce packaging waste. Be smart about what you bulk-buy - make sure that the item won't go bad before you get around to using it, and that you have room for the bulk items back at home.

The food we eat is a huge indicator of our health. Eating cleanly and simply, exposing your body to as few toxic pollutants as possible, will benefit your wellbeing. Be flexible; sometimes the only option may be non-organic or in the frozen section. Pick and choose what works for you and your budget, and know that every step toward eating cleanly is a step in the right direction for your health and for the health of the planet. (source: ecowatch.com)

Try our natural reusable eco friendly products for your kitchen: cotton bags for your shopping, food containers, organic food.

Say Yes to Life, Earth Thanks! 🌿

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