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Do you ever get overwhelmed when you’re at the grocery story, trying to figure out which foods are healthy and which foods aren’t healthy?

Here’s a rule of thumb that has helped me make healthy choices at the grocery story: Stay on the Perimeter.

If you think about it, the perimeter of the grocery store is where most of the healthy foods are found. On the perimeter, you will find the fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as the healthy meats. In general, it’s best to stick with those options for most of your food intake.

Venture into the aisles, however, and you can run into trouble. Up and down the aisles, you will find the processed foods, breads, sodas, chips, frozen dinners, and ice cream. In general, it’s best to limit these options (or just avoid them completely).

Next time you are at the grocery store, do an experiment. Take your cart, and just shop on the perimeter of the grocery story. Don’t even walk down any of the aisles. My prediction is that if you do this, you will end up making healthy food choices automatically.

Discussion: When you are at the grocery store, do you spend most of your time shopping on the perimeter, or most of your time shopping in the aisles? What do you think of the idea of sticking to the perimeter?