Shopping Made Easy with Guiding Stars

The theme of National Nutrition Month 2011, “Eat Right with Color,” offers a fantastic shopping tip! Together with the 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 in 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 – lowfat 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. The Guiding Stars are not fooled by foods that appear to be good for you. If you use them 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 something then replace it with something better! Still stock up on snacks but choose better for you foods that will leave you satisfied. Plan to “splurchase” once in a while. Make a game out of it by only buying the more 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 good for you…from head to toe. Buy foods that are lowest in unhealthful saturated and trans fats, sodium and sugar that are good for your heart and blood 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, two or three Guiding Stars for more of the good stuff and less of the bad. It is that simple!

Learn more about Guiding Stars by visiting

*Article and image provided by Allison Stowell, MS, RD, CDN on behalf of Guiding Stars.*