We usually shop by product: just buying items we like. That's fine, unless you are trying to change your eating habits. When I was writing out my grocery list the other day, I realized that I am preparing my meals differently, so I should be shopping differently. Usually, I list out things I like to eat. This time, I put together items they way I need to be eating them. For example, I've been eating a lot of Tilapia (sauteed with olive oil & garlic). I checked and saw that I am low on the oil & garlic, not to mention I need different sides to go with the fish.
Because I eat so dang much fish now, I checked out various simple recipes while I made out my list. I ended up with things that I am actually going to be using up. That sounds so common sense, but I can't tell you how often I leave the store with a mish-mash of ingredients for recipes I haven't thought out.
- This is going to save me some money
- Keeps me on track with my better eating habits
- Helps me resist "snack shopping."
- Forces me to plan out meals in advance, and...
- ... even if I don't, I'm not going too far out of my fitness plan
The downside to this is that it works mostly for singles or couples without kids - unless the whole family is on the same fitness plan. It's also inconvenient if you lack basic willpower and end up making return trips to the store because you get weak for something out of your "plan."
This is the first time I am structuring my shopping this way. I will be back to let you know how it works out for me in my "real" life!