Gone are the days of Pepsi and white bread. Today, we're expected to fill our carts with "lean" meats, "whole" grains and "good" fats. But as Registered Dietitian and Zeel Expert Laura Cipullo knows, not all health foods are created equal; and supermarket aisles are ripe with seemingly nutritious items that aren't as wholesome as they appear.
What's a consumer to do? Laura, an authority on weight-loss, weight-maintenance and portion control, arms us with eight simple rules for making smart choices at the supermarket — whether you're heading to the local Fairway or placing an order online.
1. Bread: We already know to buy whole wheat bread, but more importantly, each slice should contain at least three grams of fiber.
2. Meat: Whether chicken or beef, you'll want to choose a package that's 90 percent lean or more.
3. Cereal: Cap'n Crunch or Cocoa Puffs? Check the cereal box to confirm that your chosen brand has at least five grams of fiber in order to keep you full until lunch.
4. Pasta: This depends on your portion size. For every two ounces of whole grain pasta, be sure that you're getting five grams of fiber.
5. Fruit: Most apples are actually slightly larger than a serving of fruit, so choose ones that are a tad smaller than the rest of the barrel.
6. Treats: You don't have to ditch every last morsel of junk food, but processed foods like chips, cookies and candy should never have more than two grams of saturated fat.
7. Frozen Entrée: Even the healthier brands are loaded with salt, so avoid TV dinners containing more than 600 milligrams of sodium per serving.
8. Nuts: Unless you have lots of self-control, it's a good idea to buy individual bags of almonds to prevent one too many handfuls of these fatty nuts. Even adorable snack-packs can exceed a single serving. Ideally, you should munch on just six to eight almonds and limit yourself to 12.
For personalized nutrition counseling and dietary advice, book an appointment with Laura through Zeel.