Shopping the Center of the Store

Woman shopping for groceries

One of my favorite things about the Guiding Stars program is that it refutes the myth that you must only shop the perimeter of the grocery store in order to find nutritious foods. Before I joined the Guiding Stars team, I worked in community nutrition education for low-income families. Like most shoppers, price was an important factor in my clients’ grocery shopping decisions, along with healthy foods that their family would enjoy. I led healthy shopping tours at stores with Guiding Stars and would use the program to highlight how you can find nutritious foods that fit your budget throughout the store. From this experience I learned that the center of the store is where Guiding Stars really shines. Let me explain why.

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Click & Collect Success

Woman hand works in a laptop computer in the office.

To slow the spread of coronavirus, Americans are being urged to stay at home except to provide essential services or do essential things like grocery shopping. Ordering food online for curbside pickup is among the CDC’s recommendations to limit potential exposure to others and the virus. The demand for curbside pickup at supermarkets has surged to a level higher than ever before. Slots for this service, also referred to as click and collect, are difficult to secure. Many shoppers are also navigating this shopping experience for the first time. I want to share some tips here for click and select shopping success. I can’t help you snag a coveted slot (try ordering early?), but once you do, I hope you feel more prepared.  

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Satisfying Healthy Snacking at Home

Herbed Popcorn

When working from home, one of my biggest issues, and I think I am not alone, is my urge to snack. At work, I snack frequently as well, but the difference seems to be what I am snacking on. At work, I keep a drawer stocked with healthy items so that I don’t have an option for a less healthy choice.  So why can’t I keep to the same rules at home? I do often try to keep things I know I have less portion control with out of the house all together, but there are some less healthy items at home too. How do I allow snacking but in the right amount and with the right choices?  Here are some of my personal strategies.

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5 Breakfast Ideas for Under $5 that Won’t Derail Your Morning

Pumpkin Overnight Waffles

Getting out the door on time can be challenging for families. One blip in the typical, hectic routine can derail an entire morning, leaving everyone frustrated and late. Skipping breakfast is not the solution, in terms of health, when time is tight. The benefits of eating a nourishing breakfast are worth the effort. Notably, people who regularly eat a healthy breakfast tend to perform better at work and school. And if the meal is made at home, it can have a positive effect not only on your overall health, but also your budget. These breakfast ideas won’t break the bank and will keep your family full, satisfied, and ready to tackle the demands of the day.

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One-Pot Meals

Winter Beef Stew

If you’ve read one of my blogs before you’re most likely aware of my affinity for one-pot meals. For me, it all comes down to convenience. These recipes usually have more streamlined prep and fewer dishes to wash at the end. On busy weeknights, that’s a win-win. Cooking this way doesn’t have to be at the expense of flavor and nutrition either. Follow these tips to make sure that your one-pot meals are not only tasty, but also nourishing. 

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Five Meals for a Family of Four for $10

Chicken Fajita Bowls

Meal planning and cooking at home are a few effective strategies for eating better on a budget. I encourage people to look at what they have in their pantry already and what is on sale at their supermarket to guide their meal planning. By following these tips, you can purchase less food at the store and save money. You will waste less food and the ingredients you do buy will be at a good price. I like the challenge of piecing together a meal this way with what I have on hand plus a few common grocery list items. It’s like Top Chef on a budget. 

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