Paper or Plastic?

I have had this experience one too many times…  you’re absolutely starving. You ravage through your pantry in hopes to find a morsel of food to satisfy the monster growling in your belly. You open the refrigerator and find… a few slices of cheese, some yogurt, leftovers that you should have eaten (or thrown out) a week ago, and some weird juice that looked tempting at the grocery store, but you were dead wrong once you brought it home.

It's a sad day when the fridge is empty...

What to do?

9 out of 10 times, you head to the grocery store ready to restock all the necessities. Wrong move! This almost always results in over indulging at the store. You end up with items in your cart that just sound so delicious at that very moment. But you’ll never touch them. Trust me, I know.

I strongly believe that it’s a vicious cycle… this whole phenomenon of grocery stores. They purposely stock way too many options so you get completely disorientated and end up getting more than you really need, which ends up going to waste and then you have nothing to eat and you find yourself back at the store!

Grocery store overload!!

When I moved to Brooklyn, I came across Fresh Direct and it was by far the most ingenious thing ever. I got only what I needed and I didn’t even have to leave my house to lug grocery bags down 2 avenues! On top of that, they deliver the items in a cardboard box so there’s no need for grocery bags of any sort. Win.

Courtesy of willgoto.com

On my many trips to India and even when I lived there as a child, I don’t ever recalling stepping inside a giant “grocery store”. There are open air markets everywhere with fresh fruit and vegetables directly from the farms. People bring their own cloth bags and carry the fresh items back home. I don’t recall ever seeing anything “canned” in the cupboards at my aunt’s house for that matter. Why stuff things in cans when you get them fresh down the street? No wonder their eating habits are all so healthy. Well, I can’t really say that for the entire country. Overindulgence is an issue wherever you go – whether it’s with boxed foods, canned foods, desserts, beer, etc.

Speaking of overindulgence, I’m ashamed to have lived in the 2nd fattest country in the USA for most of my life – good ol’ Houston, TX. Yes, there is a LOT of good food in Houston, don’t get me wrong. Their BBQ and Mexican food cannot be surpassed. But so many people just don’t know when to say enough is enough. So many fatty foods, so many preservatives, it’s so wrong. It doesn’t help that the portions at restaurants in one meal can sometimes feed a family of 4.

Moral of this winding story:

  1. Eat something before you go grocery shopping! Your wallet will thank you.
  2. When you go to a restaurant, think about how much food is served to you and whether you could take half of it home. Stop eating at the first sign of being full. That’ll also leave some room for a light dessert 🙂
  3. Take your own grocery bags to the store! They’re easier to carry out and you’re doing your part in saving the planet – one grocery bag at a time.
  4. Stay away from boxed and canned foods. The amount of preservatives, salt, and calories in those things are just plain awful.
  5. If you have the luxury of being surrounded by amazing fruit, veggies, and meats, take it slow and take the time to enjoy it.
  6. Give back to the community. Volunteer at food banks, meals on wheels, and soup kitchens whenever you can. Those who don’t have the luxury of having a warm meal every night deserve something too!
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