Grocery Store Aisle Guru

Grocery Store Aisle Guru

If only produce could speak, we might hear “we can reduce your risk of developing cancer by close to 50%,” or “we can help reduce your blood pressure by piling on the fiber to bring that nasty cholesterol back to your liver to be put to good use.”  But food can’t talk.  Fruits & veggies cannot speak, at least not in so many words. However, that doesn’t stop the inside aisles from boasting the glory of their wonder-work synthetic concoctions all over the grocery through hyped up advertisement. I’m here to be your grocery store aisle guide, amidst the noise and confusion.

The market is just that and more: an opportunity to market.  Researchers have carefully examined the consumers every behavior, because this enhances the components of the store that are most profitable.  Unfortunately, as the consumer, this typically isn’t in our best interest. I have outlined below a few reasons why below.

hand holding red watermelon fresh produce
select fresh produce from the grocery store aisle.

Rock the Grocery store Aisles- Here's what you need to know:

  • Convenience foods such as chips, soda, condiments, and frozen dinners are a win-win for the grocer.  These foods tend to be lower in cost, and seemingly never perish.  This means convenience foods can sit on sit on a shelf until the perfect marketing ploy reels us in.
  • Convenience items have every opportunity to shout at you with brightly colored labels and high-priced advertisement schemes as you skim them while walking down the aisle.  If I consider it  for just a moment, there’s no guesswork in the reasons why the highest priced items are at eye level. Candy and soda snatch our attention on the way out the door.
empty grocery cart in grocery store aisle
many pantries are set up like small shopping centers

Why Can't Produce Give a Shout Out Like it's Grocery Store Aisle Constituents?

  • Produce can’t shout.  Why? Because it doesn’t have vibrantly colored packages and a label (which manufacturers have kindly added into our purchase price).

  • It won’t dictate how much you ought to eat at once by commanding a corporate produced serving size (which likely don’t fit my unique dietary needs). 

  • Fresh Produce can’t scream “I’m low carb,” or “I’m gluten free,” amidst a giant brightly colored electricity bolt stamped onto shiny plastic in the grocery store aisle.  Nope. Fresh produce just IS gluten free; humbly on the shelf it sits.

grocery store aisle basket with fruit
grocery store aisle basket with fruit

Tell Me More- If Produce Could Speak, What would it Say?

If produce could speak carrots might say: “I’m full of beta-carotene, I promote healthy vision.” Broccoli might say “I’m full of isothiocyanates, I help reduce cancer cell proliferation” Oranges might say “I am full of vitamin C, an antioxidant for your cells.” Spinach might say “Eat me for healthy bones. I’m full of calcium.  I will help you heal if you are hurt with vitamin K and Zinc.” And if in close enough proximity they might all yell in unison “we make a great stir fry!”

I Need My Food to Be Quiet. In What Grocery Store Aisle can I find Produce?

Come on over to the outskirt  grocery store in the aisles where you can hear yourself think – the perimeter!  Around these parts, I need not know the % of added sugars (I’ll give you a hint. There aren’t any!). I need not pay extra for a fancy label, because a label just isn’t necessary!  Just pick up the pieces of the rainbow, trust their judgement, and place the produce kindly in your basket

Sure there isn’t a one size fits all rule when it comes to produce, and some nutritious and scrumptious fruits and veggies can exist in a can or a freezer bag screaming their heads off with the rest of the bunch. Unfortunately, these grassroot advocates are few and far between, and it can take a little attention to sort through all the jargon. Label-less food is a great way to get a quick answer about whats healthy 99% of the time. What are your favorite produce options?

©2019 Shenajaramillord.peaceandnutrition

Shena Jaramillo. Registered Dietitian
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Shena Jaramillo. Registered Dietitian

Hi I'm Shena. I believe in choosing plants first, honoring your hunger, and that a little humor goes a long way.

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