How often do we go to the shops and come back with everything, except what we need? When you are at home it is easy to stick to a weight loss program because there are so fewer distractions! It's when we go the shops that temptation strikes. However, with that being said we do still need to leave the house to purchase the necessary ingredients that make up a healthy diet.

Here are 5 tips for a healthy shopping experience:

Planning

Create a meal planner to map out your meals for the next 30 days. Do this before your next monthly shopping experience so that you know exactly what you are going to purchase!

Make sure that you are adding the right amount of fruit and vegetables to your planner for a more balanced diet.

Shop the perimeter first

The layout of stores are pretty much the same, they keep all the healthy stuff on the perimeter. So that is exactly where you need to start your shopping experience, on the perimeter of the store. Also, fresh foods tend to be healthier than ready made because you know exactly what is going into your meal. No hidden calories there!

Make a list and check it twice

Having a list prepared will make your shopping more efficient and you will not end up wandering the aisles aimlessly looking for the healthy foods. Even though you have a list, do not let it prevent you from trying new healthy foods. When forming your list, use your meal planner and do not forget to include healthy, convenient snacks!

Avoid shopping on an empty stomach

We have all experienced disciplines rapid declination when we are hungry, am I right or am I right !? It is far easier to buy those high-calorie treats when we are hungry, so at all costs avoid shopping on an empty stomach. If you do find yourself on an empty stomach while at the shops, drink some water and munch on a piece of fruit.

Understand what is in the food

Often times fat-free and low-fat contain a lot more fat than what is normally expected. Beware, nutrient labels usually only list the nutrients for one serving which can become a problem if you feel that you need more than one serving. Try comparing similar foods to each other so that you know exactly what you are buying.

The best way to prevent coming home with everything but what you needed is to be prepared! I find that the best way to finish a monthly goal is to start it on a good foot. Remember that the less junk food you keep at home the less of it you will consume!