Over the years many patients have asked that I make a "cheat sheet" to help people navigate their way throughout the grocery store to improve ones health. Well after years of asking, and without further due, I give you my flow chart to navigation of packaged foods. Take this with you to the grocery store and do not get overwhelmed with all of the information. Just focus on one item at a time and as you slowly replace your old packaged food, with a new one, you can move on to the next food group. Before too long you will own the list and be able to cruise through the grocery store with confidence that you are buying the best foods possible for you and your family.
Shopping Guide Rules
1. Absolutely no food coloring (red 40, yellow 5, yellow 6, etc) or Artificial flavors
2. Avoid Sugar at all cost. Absolutely no Aspartame, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Sucralose, Saccharin, Truvia or Acesulfame K. Fructose, stevia, and organic cane sugar is acceptable, but the lower it is on the ingredient list the better.
3. Absolutely no GMO. The most GMO foods are Soy (soy lecithin, soy protein. soybean oil), Canola, Corn, maltodextin, Sugar Beets, Papaya, zucchini. When Buying these ingredients, they must be organic or labeled "Non-GMO."
4. Absolutely none of the following chemicals: Brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate (bromated flour), Azodicarbonamide, MSG, glutamate, BHA, BHT, Carrageenan, sodium nitrite, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, or Sulfites.
5. Nothing packaged in Bisphenol- A (BPA). Use glass, porcelain, and stainless steel over aluminum or plastic. Limit cans. Do not use plastic that has an imprint with a 3, 6, or 7. Look for BPA free.
6. Dairy: Milk- must be organic, and look for grass-fed or Pasture raised. DO NOT BUY HOMOGENIZED, and get as little pasteurized as possible (ultra- pasteurized has little benefit). Raw is best. Best brand: Organic Valley. B: Yogurt and kefir must be organic and preferably grass fed. Do not buy when says "made with live active cultures." Instead must say "contains active cultures, active yogurt cultures, or living yogurt cultures". It may also say on package that it is cultured after pasteurization! Kefir is even healthier than yogurt. Best brand: yogurt Stonyfield Greek Yogur, Kefir-Helios, Earths Best, Green Valley, C:Cheese- buy blocked cheese and artisan cheeses as much as possible. AVOID SHREDDED CHEESE! Best Brands: Kerry Gold, Organic Valley, Trader Joes, Applegate, Horizon D: Butter- Must be organic, preferably grass fed and raw. Best Brands: Organic Valley, Smjor, Kerrygold.
7. Chicken/Eggs- Must be organic, Pasture-raised (grass-fed) is best, cage free or free range is good. Best Brands: Organic Valley, Horizon, Eggslands Best.
8. Meat- Has to be "natural" preferred organic and grass-fed or pasture raised. Pork products must be organic and cured meats need to be investigated as to not use sugar and should be using salt instead. Packaged Brands: Mary's, Whit Oak, Jones Creek, Hearst Ranch, Sommers, Applegate.
9. Fish- Never eat farm raised fish. Always eat wild, fatty cold water fish. Look for line caught or troll caught. Avoid Bluefin tuna, sea bass, orange roughy. Choose light tuna over white tuna as it has less mercury and make sure it is packed in water.
10. Produce- Fresh local produce is best, followed by frozen. The following must be bought organic: Apples, Celery, peppers, peaches, strawberries, oranges, grapes, spinach, lettuce, cucumbers, blueberries, potatoes, green beans, kale, corn, papaya, zucchini, squash, cherries. Organic produce has a 5 digit code starting with a 9. All other produce can be normal, but organic is preferred.
11. Grains- Absolutely no white or bleached grains. Avoid wheat, instead opt for oats, buckwheat, quinoa, millet, and amaranth. Corn must be organic! Black rice and wild/brown rice is ok.
12. Flour- Substitute normal flour for coconut flour, almond flour (almond meal), buckwheat flour, Flax meal, and chia seeds.
13. Nuts- Raw and unsalted. Should be soaked in water with salt and drained 3x, then dehydrated on cookie sheet at low heat (do not cook). Store in sealed container in refrigerator. Almonds soaked for 12 hours, peanuts/pecans 8 hours, walnuts 4hours, flax 8 hours, chia 2 hours.
14. Oils- Cold pressed extra virgin coconut oil should be used most. Cold pressed extra virgin olive oil should only be used raw or when cooking for less than 7 minutes. Palm oil is a good alternative, Butter is best.
15. Spices- Non irradiated organic spices only! Unrefined sea salt or Himalayan sea salt. Best brands: Simply Organic, Frontier, Smith and Truslow, Morton and Basset. Avoid: McCormick, Nielsen, Morton, and Kosher.
1. Washing Produce: 1 cup water, 1 cup organic white vinegar, 1 tbsp. Baking soda, 1/2 lemon.
A. Mix ingredients in a tall pitcher for foam
B. Store in an empty spray bottle
C. Spray on fruit, wait ten minutes and wash off with cool water
D. Enjoy immediately or store
2. Cook/Grill tips: Don't grill over 320 F, don't puncture meats, Flip frequently, Always marinade, cut off any burnt or charcoaled pieces.
3. Anywhere that food may come into contact with should be used with natural cleaners like white vinegar. (Kitchen countertops, tables, refrigerator, sink).
4. All natural soaps and beauty products should be used to avoid depletion of natural oils and minerals within the body.
5. Environmental friendly and all organic products should be used to wash and dry clothes as chemicals can leach into the pores of the skin and cause health issues.
6. Food should be stored in glass and stainless steal as much as possible. Avoid plastics and aluminum at all costs.
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