Grocery shopping brings me the most stress. It usually involves 4 stores (whole foods, trader joes, heinens, and giant eagle), no coupons, shopping the sales, priorities, and a very tight budget. We are a single income family. Income that is made on others disposable income. My husband is a tattoo artist. He works really hard but he is dependent on people keeping their appointments and then sitting for the set amount of time they scheduled. If they don’t show or they only sit for 2 of the 4 hours they scheduled our budget changes. This happens weekly. One of my jobs is to make sure our family is fed with clean healthy food. When I hear people say “it’s too expensive to eat like you do”, I cringe. It’s a shitty excuse and I’m not buying it. I make it work every week.
To be successful in following this way of eating, in changing your lifestyle, in transitioning your kids, you need to get rid of everything that will derail you. Throw away or donate the things that aren’t considered paleo, or has a commercial. For the next 30 days we are resetting the brain and body so let’s get rid of everything! My family and I have been eating pretty clean for over two years now, we cleaned out our pantry and fridge a long time ago. For some of you, if not most, this is the start, the very beginning and it has to be a clean break for you to see and feel the results. No cheats, no treats, no paleo baked goods… Commit, right now, to 30 days. If the junk is around, if it’s still there for you to easily reach for, YOU WILL. Get rid of it. If your kids know the pop tarts and cereal are in the pantry they will protest eggs and bacon. If they know the mac&cheese is still in the cupboard they won’t even try the sweet potato fries you worked so hard on preparing. Don’t buy gluten free bread and snacks. That stuff isn’t any more real than a pop tart. They are full of processed sugars and corn! Over the next 30 days I hope to show you some fun and creative ways to help transition you and your family off processed food. But first, let’s talk about what items you need in stock.
I wish I could afford grassfed beef, pastured chickens and eggs, clean pork and ocean caught fish but I can’t. I buy that when we can but for the day to day I have to shop at 4 stores. I would buy everything from Whole Foods but that isn’t realistic either. I made a list of my go to items and where I get them. (Note: I live in NE Ohio and the farmers market options are pretty limited come the winter. When the weather breaks I try to buy most everything at the farmers market)
* fresh ground almond butter (grind your own and it’s MUCH cheaper)
** snowville creamery non homaginized whole milk
* cage free eggs (about 3 dozen a week)
** local grassfed cheese
** slightly sweet chai tea mix
* grassfed or pastured meat that is on sale
* bulk bin raw almonds and cashews
* lara bars
* chicken sausages (a variety of flavors)
* dried fruits (no sugar or sulfates added)
* coconut milk/cream
* coconut oil cooking spray
* spices (these are important, having a good mix of spices is key to making many different dishes using the same ingredients)
* most of my meat (shop the sales and their quality is a little better than the big grocery chains)
* produce (lots of veggies, shop what’s in season and make sure you have a variety of items and color. keep in mind these items spoil so buy what you can eat in a week/few days. DO NOT load up on fruit – it’s still sugar. )
* canned goods (beans**, tomatoes and tomato sauce – check the labels for added bullshit and sugar. Put it back if it has any added ingredients. You are buying beans make sure it’s just beans)
* olive oil
Giant Eagle (local big chain grocer)
* frozen fish
* some meat (it is so very hard for me to buy meat here. It’s full of hormones, antibiotics, and the animals did not live a natural life. However, when we are pinching pennies…)
* produce (I shop the weekly ad between heinens and giant eagle, again shopping the sales)
Costco: (bulk items)
* coconut oil
* frozen veggies
Whew this is a long post! I hope you guys are still with me. The list above is vague I know. To focus your list a bit (what kinds of meat and veggies) purchase some paleo cookbooks or search the internet for some paleo recipes. You need to have an idea of what you will be cooking for the week so you don’t over spend or buy things that you don’t know how to prepare.
I can easily keep typing about how to set yourself up for success but you folks have busy lives. If you have specific questions or concerns please post them below and I will address them. Do yourselves a favor and set yourself up for success! Clean out the garbage and plan ahead.
** denotes a non paleo item please see my post here https://mypaleobaby.wordpress.com/2014/02/27/my-personal-paleo/ where I discuss this.