Shopping made easy with Guiding Stars

The theme of National Nutrition Month 2011, “Eat Right with Color”, offers a fantastic shopping tip! Together with Guiding Stars, you can use color to guide you toward the most healthful foods in the store! Look for deep rich colors in your produce for more anti-aging, immune boosting antioxidants! Let color guide you toward better cuts of meat- bright red meat in the package means less fat on your plate (and look for Guiding Stars on the sticker). Think brown when shopping for your starches-brown rice, whole wheat pasta and whole grain breads. Don’t forget that white is a color too-low fat milk and yogurt round out a perfect shopping list!

Think about your week and make your shopping list work for you. Pick up a family size package of chicken, cook it and then use it different ways. For example, pair it with get fresh salad ingredients and dressing, brown rice, frozen stir fry vegetables, whole wheat tortillas, reduced fat shredded cheese or a can of beans. Now you have what you need for a grilled chicken salad, chicken stir-fry over brown rice and chicken quesadillas with brown rice and beans. The leftovers from these three meals can get you through the work week!


Don’t be fooled by fancy fonts and trendy terms that look healthful. Guiding Stars are not fooled by foods that appear to be good for you. If you use Guiding Stars in helping you make your food choices then you won’t be either! Guiding Stars will navigate you toward the best choices for your family when you don’t have time to read labels. Trust them to avoid purchasing traps.

If you’re trying to eat less of a particular food, use the Stars to find a better replacement! Stock up on snacks, using the stars to help choose better-for-you foods that will leave you satisfied. Plan to “splurchase” once in awhile. Make a game out of it by only buying tempting foods when they are on sale-this will break your pattern if you are eating unhealthful foods too often.

Remember the children’s song, “Head, shoulders, knees and toes”? Think about this little song on your next shopping trip and remember to buy foods that are good for you…from head to toe. Buy foods that are good for your heart and blood sugar, that are low in unhealthful saturated and trans fats, sodium and sugar. Then aim for low calorie choices that are high in fiber and healthful protein for weight loss, strong bones and strong muscles. The easiest way to do this is to follow the stars! One (good) , two (better) or three (best) Guiding Stars for more of the good stuff and less of the bad. It is that simple and that easy!

About our Consulting Dietitian

Allison Stowell MS, RD, CDN is a Registered Dietitian and a working mom of two. Allison enables individuals to make positive, sustainable changes in their eating habits by stressing conscious eating, improving relationships with food and offering a non-diet approach for reaching and maintaining ideal body weight.

She also runs a successful private practice with offices in Danbury, CT, Bedford Hills, NY and Mahopac, NY. Since 2007, Allison has also worked with the grocer, Hannaford Brothers Corporation, as a Nutrition Coordinator. She provides complementary nutrition classes and tours, community workshops and one-on-one shopping experiences at their Carmel, NY location.

She joins the Guiding Stars team to help people in a number of sectors (grocery, hospitals, schools and universities) to understand how to use the Guiding Stars nutrition navigation program to make healthier food choices.

Allison lives in Connecticut with her husband, two small children and her dog, Chase.