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Smarter Shopping: Work the Perimeter

After reading the top ten selling grocery store foods, and finding cigarettes in the number 10 spot I was shocked. They're not even food!

Then I read that the list was based on UPC scan sales, which explains why soda and cereal bested non-coded meat and perishable produce. The list, which also included frozen dinners, beer, and natural cheeses, was another reminder to shop the perimeter. Most grocery stores are laid out so milk and eggs are in the back corner, meaning you have to walk by the potato chips to reach the healthier foods. The foods naturally loaded with protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals are kept at the perimeter, so take your cart to the edges of the store and fill up on unprocessed foods — fruit, veggies, meat, dairy and eggs.

Image Source: Getty
Join The Conversation
darc5204 darc5204 7 years
I agree with you, ella1978. Not everyone can afford to load up on fresh foods, but frozen and canned vegetables, fruit, meat, seafood, etc. are healthy and economical choices.
ella1978 ella1978 7 years
I'm also a fan of the frozen food aisles. I load up on frozen veggies in the winter - much cheaper! Plus my fiance loves some of those steamfresh meals... But there are a lot of canned beans, veggies, etc that exist in the middle too. We spend most of our time on the perimeter, but definately make it into the middle as well.
lovesickblues111 lovesickblues111 7 years
I agree with nerdopia. and eating healthy is a way of living.
Yogaforlife Yogaforlife 7 years
The local grocery store I shop has bulk and organic in the middle aisles, fruit on the end, meat and dairy in the back and bakery on the other end. I personally avoid the aisles if I can unless I need to buy more rice.
kia kia 7 years
Actually it seems like most of the markets around me also have their bulk sections on the perimeter as well... that contain the beans, whole grains, brown rice and oatmeal.
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
At first I was shocked by the list, but then I saw fruits and vegetables weren't included in the data . . . But still, it's scary how much soda America drinks!
deanna024 deanna024 7 years
What about beans, whole grain pasta, brown rice, oatmeal, pretzels, etc.? All of those are in the middle aisles and are healthy.
Kimpossible Kimpossible 7 years
I agree nerdopia. Healthy eating being expensive has to be one of the top excuses people give me, and it's definitely the #1 BS excuse.
Spectra Spectra 7 years
Like we haven't heard this a million times, but it's still good advice. My grocery store is laid out pretty soon as you walk in, you're in the produce section. So I get all my produce right away and then walk by the bakery to the meat section. I get all my meat and then I'm in the dairy section where I get my milk and yogurt. Then I go to the aisles to get whatever random things I need and then hit the checkout.
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