Don't you experience an invisible magnetic strip around the racks of cakes, colas, candies, chips & cookies forcefully attracting you to buy them when you enter the grocery store? Well, we all have been the victim of the cravings resulting in impulse buying of sugar, sodium and fat loaded eats.

Nutritionist Ekta Sood at Ekta's Diet Dazzle told HerZindagi that "these are not just unhealthy for your waistline but also your budget."

Here are 5 cheat tricks that Ekta follows when she goes for grocery shopping.

Plan Your Meal In Advance

If you make a schedule of what you would like to eat for your breakfast, lunch, dinner keeping a healthy lifestyle in mind, there are lesser chances that you will pick up junk mindlessly. Remember, if it isn't in your schedule, all that you buy is extra calories. 

Make A List

veges

It is my secret formula that helps me a lot in finding the right products and ingredients. You have to make a list of all that you are going to buy and divide them into 4 columns.

  • Very tasty, very healthy: Must buy
  • Very healthy, less tasty - Let's take one-two products and innovatively incorporate them into your diet
  • Less healthy, very tasty - Buy one for your cheat meal
  • Less healthy, less tasty - Cancel

Don't Enter Empty Stomach

snacking

Always eat something filling before entering the grocery store. This way you will not fall into impulse buying of junk and other calorie-laden products. If you tend to feel hungry, your brain automatically signals that you will need all that junk post your grocery shopping spree. I prefer apple with peanut butter or fresh veggies with hummus or a fruit salad before stepping out.

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Read Your Labels

It is very important to make informed choices. Read the constituents of the product in its label to understand what you are actually eating while consuming the product. Even 'all natural' and 'organic' products have hidden fats, sugar and sodium present in them. While I always recommend going seasonal, even if you are buying frozen food, ensure that they are not sitting on sugary syrups or saltwater.

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Look For Healthier Alternatives

Let's admit it, we all have our binge watch sessions and our guilty pleasures when it comes to food. It is a very convenient idea to open packs of chips and pizzas while you stream your favourite TV series on a Friday night. But how about replacing it with roasted foxnuts or makhanas seasoned with salt & pepper? Or if you have a habit of stocking up the instant noodles and chips packet for your midnight hunger cravings, how about replacing them with yogurt & seasonal fruits in your fridge?

cucumber bites

Keeping the current season in mind, strawberry with yogurt or cucumber bites with hung curd is my all-time favourite. I recently saw a celebrity making a healthy version of sev puri by replacing the 'maida' sev with cucumber bites.

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Let the inner Masterchef in you take over this time. All these small habit changes will take you a long way. To conclude, go local, go seasonal and make informed choices. Happy Grocery Shopping!

Stay tuned to HerZindagi for staying healthy with tips and tricks shared by experts.