Healthy Supermarket Savings 101

August 26, 2013

Need a few quick tips how to eat healthier and save? Here are SupermarketGuru's top 3 tips

These days, more of us are trying to improve the nutrient quality of the foods we eat, whether it is avoiding certain added ingredients or choosing foods that contain more nutrients. As food prices continue to rise, however, it is getting harder to do. So here are SupermaretGuruā€™s top three tips to eating healthy and saving money.

Don't skip the leafy greens! Kale, arugula, and spinach are some of the most nutritious and affordable foods you will find in a grocery store. The darker the color of the leafy green, the more nutritious, because of the antioxidant, beta-carotene. Many salad greens are also a good source of vitamin C, potassium, folate and fiber. Rather than buying the pre-packaged, pre-washed bags of lettuce, go for the fresh heads. They are less expensive. If your store has automatic misters over the produce, and the greens are priced per pound, be sure to shake off the excess water before checking out.

Choose canned tomatoes over pre-made sauces. Canned tomatoes are a good source of the heart-healthy antioxidant, lycopene, which your body absorbs more easily from cooked tomatoes than it does from raw tomatoes. Make your own pasta sauce from crushed tomatoes: just add a tablespoon of olive oil and some spices, and you'll have a great sauce for about a buck (rather than three to six), and you'll be avoiding those added sugars and other ingredients. Look for canned tomatoes that are naturally steam peeled. Most use chemical processes.

Choose fish, but look at the signs at the fish counter: most will say "previously frozen." So head over to the frozen aisle, where you'll find salmon, tilapia, sole, shrimp - all of the basics - at about half the cost. And they are better, since they are frozen only once. Typically when fish is caught, it is put on ice or in a freezer on the boat, as the boat is on the water for weeks at a time. When it is brought to shore, it defrosts and is shipped to the supermarket. Then the store puts these "fresh" fish on ice again. Be sure to also read the country of origin label, which is usually on the back of the package, to make sure you know where the fish is coming from. About 80 percent of previously frozen and frozen fish is now imported.

Stay tuned for more of SupermarketGuruā€™s top healthy eating, money saving tips.