A healthy grocery shopping trip isn’t as easy as it might seem. If your family is busy and on the go like mine is, you will love the new healthy grocery shopping navigation system at Marsh grocery stores!
Originally Published in the Greenwood Daily Journal Saturday November 12, 2011
It seems like these days families and individuals are on the go, go, GO! The last thing you need as you run in the grocery store after work is confusing advertisements and mixed messages. This new rating system is called Guiding Stars. The best way to find the good choices on each shelf when you are in a hurry.
If you don’t have the time to spend on sorting through the healthy options on each shelf, Marsh Supermarkets has a new way to single out the items that give you the most nutrition for the calories.
Guiding Us to a Healthy Grocery Trip
Now almost every item in the store, whether fresh or packaged, has a shelf tag with a star rating on it. Each star represents the nutrition level of the food item. The more stars you see, the better for you it is. For example three stars means the item is the best nutritional value and no starts means that the item does not meet the rigorous standards that marsh has set.
This navigation system gives shoppers a quick tool to locate the foods they want and weed out the ones they don’t. The United States Surgeon General backs this program as a great way to keep your eating on track and help guide to making good food choices.
In addition to this new labeling system Marsh now marks all food items as to their classification. For example, Food items that are gluten-free, organic, dairy free, low sodium, whole grain and heart healthy are now marked as such.
What does this mean for us as consumers? Well, I know that labels can be confusing. Just because you see ‘100% whole grains’ on the package of bread or ‘made with organic ingredients’ it doesn’t mean that is what you are getting. This new way to label items on the shelves have really helped me streamline my shopping experience. When I see these tags I trust what I see on the shelf and it certainly saves time when I don’t have to read so many labels! I think that this really takes the confusion factor out of reading labels and deciphering ingredients!
As a resident of the south side of Greenwood I shop at the Stones Crossing Marsh several times a week so I glad to see that this new program has been implemented there as well. I have to admit I am a long time fan of Marsh. Growing up in Bloomington we did not have the big box grocery chains there like Wal-Mart and Meijer. We had locally owned markets, a Marsh and a Kroger. So I guess you know what they say about old habits, right?
It seems like right now everyone needs someone to blame for the trend of childhood obesity, early onset diabetes and un-healthy lifestyles. Well, here is one clear example of a retailer saying enough is enough. The shelves are clearly marked so if you make bad choices they are your bad choices to make.
That healthy grocery shopping trip will, of course, lead to the creation of some healthy dinner recipes!
One of my favorite ‘Fake out’ food items that I make on a regular basis is Basil Buttermilk Salad Dressing. This easy homemade salad dressing recipe so closely relates to Hidden Valley Ranch you would never know the difference. This is simple, easy to make and the ingredients are readily available. Best of all, there are only 6 ingredients and you can pronounce every one of them.
Do you have any healthy grocery shopping tips? If you do, please share them in the comments!
Buttermilk Basil Dressing
1c low fat buttermilk
1c low fat sour cream
1/4 c + 2 TB freshly grated Parmesan cheese
3 TB fresh basil , minced (use fresh)
1 tsp onion salt
2 garlic cloves , minced
In a bowl or large shaker container combine buttermilk and sour cream. Add Parmesan,basil, onion salt, and garlic. I add a few cracks of fresh pepper at the end. Shake or stir to combine. Refrigerate for up to 4 days.