Health and Nutrition

A Healthy Shopping Cart Leads to a Healthy Life!

Your "recipe" for a shopping cart full of healthy choices week-after-week:

#1 Color: Go for brightly colored fruits and veggies whether they are fresh, canned, dried or frozen.

Top 10 List Fruits: avocados, raspberries, strawberries, mangoes, oranges, apples, grapes, melon, kiwi, tomatoes

Top 10 List Vegetables: sweet potatoes, kale, mushrooms, eggplant, cabbage, butternut squash, cauliflower, spinach, Brussels sprouts, broccoli

#2 Whole Grains: Go for breads, rolls, cereals, pasta, tortillas and crackers made from whole grains or multi-whole grains.

Top 10 List: whole wheat bread, brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, pearl barley, corn grits, corn tortillas, popcorn cakes, multigrain crackers, low fat oat granola

#3 Lean Protein: Go for lean cuts of fresh beef, pork, lamb, skinless chicken and turkey, and seafood for lots of protein but little saturated fat.

Top 10 List: beef sirloin steak, beef eye of the round roast, pork tenderloin, leg of lamb, loin pork chops, beef round steak, skinless chicken breasts, turkey breast cutlets, 93% lean ground beef, all fish and shellfish

#4 Healthy Fats: Go for the kinds of fats that are good for your heart and use them in moderation.

Top 10 List: Olive oil, canola oil, ground flaxseeds, avocado guacamole, peanut butter, soy nut butter, walnuts, salmon, tuna and sardines (3 fatty fish with beneficial omega-3 fats)

#5 Lean Dairy Foods: Go for low fat or fat free milk, low fat or fat free yogurt and reduced fat cheese

Top 10 List: 1% cow's milk, 1% soy milk, fat free cow's milk, fat free soy milk, 1% plain yogurt (add your own fresh, canned, dried or frozen fruit), fat free plain Greek yogurt (add your own fresh, canned, dried or frozen fruit), reduced fat cheddar cheese, part skim Mozzarella cheese and string cheese

Mix these 5 ingredients together in your shopping cart and prepare them simply at home for light and healthy meals and snacks for the entire family.  A healthy shopping cart leads to a healthy kitchen pantry and a healthy kitchen pantry leads to a healthy life!

For more information about easy and nutritious meal planning, smart shopping and home cooking, contact Cindy Silver, MS, RDN, LDN, Lowes Foods' Smart Shopper Dietitian at our Nutrition Hotline: or 1-800-311-2117.  For ongoing fun and useful tips, see Smart Shopper Cindy's blog.