Our focus for the month is nutrition and in Wednesday's email we talked about how the media can influence us. A continuance from that comes from the effect supermarkets and advertising can have and how their very successful strategies can cause us to make poor choices when it comes to food!
Think, for example, of the many different campaigns supermarkets apply in the media - from Tesco's “every little helps” to Marks & Spencer selling a 'luxury' lifestyle with their “this isn’t just any (product)”. We are buying into a lifestyle that is being suggested to us and it's all happening subconsciously!
Think of the last time you went into a supermarket… retailers are subtly controlling us in one way or another. For example, the layout will normally have “essential” items at the back of the store and luxury items closer to the tills or entrances to tempt us. Items might be grouped together to give us ideas of meal choices and what might go well together. Promotions including “buy one, get one free” or discounts for bulk purchases make us feel like we are getting a 'good deal' but in the end we are leaving the supermarket with double the amount of stuff we planned to buy... and most was probably not necessary!
Being mindful in everything we do can help in so many ways when it comes to our lifestyle, but it can be especially beneficial when we are food shopping (or shopping in general!). Meal planning and shopping lists can help, as can research and common sense! Another top tip is never to go food shopping when you are hungry - it can make us more likely to make bad choices and purchase more than we need. Also, think about why you are buying into something - be it a diet, a lifestyle or that 10 pack of oreos that seem to be on sale today! Is it what you want? Is it what you need? If yes to both then great, go ahead! If not, ask yourself how necessary it is to have it and come to a conclusion mindfully.
Wise up to the games and strategies supermarkets apply and be in control of your consumer habits - this will always be one of the best ways to improve overall nutrition. If it is not in the cupboard at home, you can't eat it!
Have an awesome weekend