Grocery List Must-Haves for Healthy Eating at Home
September 9, 2020
An essential step to stay on track with a healthy eating plan is to make a grocery list.
Sticking to a healthy grocery list will help you manage your time better when going shopping, prevent yourself from purchasing foods with little nutritional value, and even reduce food waste.
Fruit and Vegetables
According to the CDC, it is recommended for adults to include in their diet at least 1½ to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of vegetables per day.
We suggest choosing fruits and veggies that are seasonal and can be either snacked raw or used for meal prep. Here are some of the most nutritious vegetables and fruits:
- Green leafy vegetables (spinach, arugula, kale)
- Brussels Sprouts
- bell peppers
- sweet potatoes
Tip: If you don’t like leafy greens, consider learning how to make pesto; it is quick and easy to make, and you can add it to pasta.
- Berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries)
- citruses (oranges, grapefruit, lemons)
Bonus tip: Drinking smoothies is a great way to incorporate fruits and some vegetables into your diet. It helps create a slow, even release of nutrients into the blood stream. However, a study published in the International Journal of Obesity found that when people consumed fruits in the form of smoothies, they consumed 12% more calories overall in comparison to eating whole fruit and solid food for meals. Therefore, it is best to eat fruit as whole if you are watching your calorie consumption.
Legumes and grains
Legumes and grains are rich sources of protein, fiber, and vitamins. They can be beneficial for weight management, as well as reducing the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes. We recommend including these in your diet:
- Chickpeas (you can make hummus!)
- Black beans
- Brown rice
If possible, choose whole grains since they are packed with nutrients including protein, fiber, B vitamins, antioxidants, and trace minerals (iron, zinc, copper, and magnesium).
Nuts and Nut Butters
Nuts are a rich source of healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and protein. They are ideal for diets that focus on a healthy weight gain.
You can add nuts on oatmeal, smoothies, and salads. Nut butter and nut milk are healthy choices as long as they are low in sugar and sodium.
Consider including the next unsalted nuts into your diet:
- Almonds (almond milk, almond butter)
- Cashews (cashew milk, cashew butter)
Whether you eat meat, are vegan, or vegetarian, your diet must include rich sources of protein. Our bodies use protein to build and repair tissues, and make enzymes, hormones, and antibodies.
Meats that are low in fat and high in protein are the following:
- Ground tuna
- Ground chicken
- Turkey breasts
- Lean pork
Vegan and Vegetarian
Vegetarian and vegan protein options include the following:
- Nutritional yeast
- Greek yogurt
- Green peas
Baked Goods and Pasta
To get the most nutritional benefits from this type of carbs, try to shop whole-wheat and whole-grain options, such as:
- 100% whole-wheat bread. Avoid bread labeled as “whole-wheat bread with enriched flour”, since it may be high on sugar and lack essential nutrients).
- Sprouted whole grain bread
- Whole-grain goods (tortillas, pita pockets)
- Oat bread
- Flaxseed bread
- Whole-wheat pasta
- Buckwheat spaghetti
- Chickpea pasta
Healthy snacks that you can moderately indulge without guilt are the following:
- Sun-dried tomatoes
- Pesto or hummus
- Natural popcorn
Having a healthier lifestyle is simple with Z.E.N. Foods. We offer healthy meal delivery plans, which you can design with the help of our consultants and nutritionists. Call (310) 205-9368 and start enjoying delicious quality meals from the comfort of your home today!