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Book review: Eat This, Not That! Supermarket Survival Guide by David Zinczenko

Eat This, Not That! Supermarket Survival GuideEat This, Not That! Supermarket Survival Guide by David Zinczenko

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

An easy guide to buying healthy food at the store. Because healthy food can be expensive, I liked the many money-saving tips. The book is more focused on the foods than the nutritional science behind their recommendations, but there are plenty of short tips and explanations. It’s packed with photos of food, so read on an empty stomach at your peril!

I skipped through a few of the sections, such as many snacks, candy, frozen meals, and energy drinks, since I rarely if ever consume those. The book recommends against eating most of these things regularly, but points out the healthier, lesser-of-two-evils options if you must indulge.

The book’s very helpful for decoding marketing labels and ingredients to help you recognize what’s healthy. The general advice: the simpler the food and the fewer the ingredients, the better. Choose natural over artificial ingredients.

Save money by buying canned, store-brand fruits and vegetables. Watch out for added sugar and sodium.
For canned meat and fish, choose packed in water, not oil.
Steam vegetables instead of boiling them.
Avoid pickles; they come from nutritionally weak cucumbers and are packed with sodium.

Food recommendations
Fish: chunk light tuna, shrimp, wild (not farmed) salmon, tilapia, catfish
Dairy: reduced fat or skim milk, yogurt, and cheese
Apples: Red Delicious
Bread: whole grain pita, whole wheat, rye. Look for more fiber than sugar, and few ingredients.
Deli meat: fresh roasted turkey (from deli), Hillshire Deli Select turkey
Cheese: mozzarella, Pepper Jack, goat, Swiss, feta, ricotta
Accents: salsa, pesto, cranberry sauce, hummus, guacamole
Spreads: Smart Balance Omega Spread, whipped butter. Butter is better than margarine, because margarine usually contains trans fat.
Peanut butter: should have 2 ingredients max: peanuts and salt
Fruit spreads: fruit should be 1st ingredient; no corn syrup
Pasta sauce: low sugar and fat
Pizza: Margherita, many vegetables, thin crust

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