How often do you find yourself tempted in the supermarket? Those special offers just look too good to ignore and so it’s easy to find a few more things in the shopping basket than you intended, and certainly sometimes the items are not always as healthy as they might want to be!

Fruit Graphic

A healthy fridge

Of course, one way around this is to make sure you have a shopping list and stick to it, but another way is to take on board some tips on how to make your shopping basket healthier – and it might keep temptation at bay!

For instance, did you know that wholegrain products contain 75% more nutrients than their white counterparts? But that studies show that only one in twenty adults eat enough wholegrain but that one in three of us are eating none at all?

When selecting staples to your diet such as rice, pasta, breakfast cereal and bread look for wholegrain varieties as much as possible. You need to get 18g of fibre a day, but you can use fruit and vegetables to help you achieve that too. And if that sounds tough, consider that a 90g portion of penne pasta contains about 2.3g of fibre but switching to wholewheat pasta and the same amount will offer 9g of fibre! And yes they are in the same aisle!

Dairy products are an important source of calcium and you should be aiming for two or three moderate portions a day – and if you’re watching your weight then you can opt for reduced fat versions. You can also help increase your intestinal health by looking for fermented milks and yoghurts which contain probiotic bacteria.

The World Cancer Research Fund also recommends that people cut back on red and processed meat following a report from them at the end of 2007 which showed strong evidence between red and processed meats and bowel cancer. Try and limit your intake to less than 500g cooked a week and perhaps switch your red meat choices to poultry or fish.

And of course, don’t forget your fluid intake – water that is! Water aids digestion, so drinking around eight glasses a day along with your dietary fibre will help to soften stools and make them easier to pass.

So, is it time to rewrite that shopping list? Stay strong in the shops and your body and digestive system will thank you for it!