Food & Drink Giveaway Healthy Living

Health Starts Here Tour & $50 Whole Foods Market Giveaway

I am a frequent Whole Foods Market shopper, but how much do I really know about the store in general and how they really are concerned about our health and have done much of the homework for us on finding the right products. Let me tell you a bit more!

I recently took their Health Starts Here Tour at my local market with my new friend and tour-guide Danielle, to help me pick out the right kind of foods I should be buying and cooking for my family. I had a one on one course showcasing the Four Pillars of Healthy Eating. Are you ready to hear them?

Whole Foods1

1. Focus on Whole Foods

Not Whole Foods Market, but foods that are ‘whole’ and classified as pure – not processed. Our meals should be loaded with whole, unrefined and unprocessed foods. I like to think of whole foods as foods that God created for us to take from the earth to keep our bodies running – fruits, veggies, fish, grains, etc. You won’t find any factory-made artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, sweeteners and hydrogenated fats from your diet here!

Have you heard the tip to stick with the outside perimeter of the store? Walking down the inner aisles is where you find most of your boxed, processed, and ready-to-go foods. The outer skirts you’ll find the fresh whole foods!

Whole Foods
Did you know that all pre-packaged fruit and veggies are cut in-house and not shipped from elsewhere?

2. Eat Plant-Strong

Focus on plant-based foods. We definitely eat meat at our house, but one thing I need to remember is the meat doesn’t have to be the main focus.  The majority of the plate should contain raw and cooked vegetables, fruits, legumes and beans, nuts, seeds and whole grains. When you eat more plants, you’re helping your body get the key micronutrients it needs to function at its best.

Danielle taught me that using the bulk aisle for your beans, quinoa, and other whole grains is a great savings AND can be healthier than buying canned or ready-made boxed mixes. I think a big part for me is that cooking dried foods can be a little daunting and time consuming, but really once you know how you just make it a part of your routine and plan ahead. I am determined to make this my new favorite aisle!

Whole Foods Bulk
Did you know that buying bulk saves money and packaging?

3. Choose Healthy Fats

Get your healthy fats from whole plant-based foods like nuts, seeds and avocados. Then minimize the amounts of extracted oils and processed fats you cook with on a daily basis.

Get rid of that canola oil…and the margarine. Whole Foods has a great variety of oils, but remember not to base your entire healthy fat intake on oils…use more whole foods!

Did you know that you should always check labels? ‘Healthy’ cererals may still contain a lot of sugar.

4. Consider Nutrient Density

This is something I never knew about and Danielle taught me that Whole Foods has signage right in their produce department listing the nutrient density of each food. (should have gotten a pic for you!)

A variety of nutrients – such as vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients – are essential for good health and every food as a balance. The Aggregate Nutrient Density Index, or ANDI is a scoring system that rates foods on a scale from 1 to 1000 based on nutrient content. You can see which foods are the most nutrient rich and build your meals around that!

Whole Foods
Did you know that you can grab 4 fresh sides for $4 if they have the Health Starts Here logo? yum!

This was an awesome tour. Not just to showcase everything that Whole Foods Market carries to make my life easier, but to teach me how to buy the right foods and what to watch for the next time I shop.

Feel free to call your local store and ask about the Health Starts Here Tour. I know they will be happy to show you around too!

Whole Foods Bakery
Did you know that the bakery doesn’t use any artificial flavors or colors? It was P’Diddy’s favorite part of the tour!

WIN $50 to Whole Foods Market!

 

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  • A Whole Foods opened up nearby, and I have been going to classes, talking with the nutritionist, reading their blog, etc. I thought I knew much already about healthy foods, but every day I'm learning more and making changes. I've definitely gone much more plant strong & nutrient dense. I'm amazed at the shelves at your Whole Foods - the one in my down is so small. I shop sales and with coupons, and don't buy a large quantity, but it is still worth it just to make small changes, a baby step at a time.
  • I am expecting and love fruits and veggies. We try to eat as many whole foods as we can in our family instead of junky processed foods.
  • I always make sure to look at the ingredients in the products that I buy to make sure I'm filling my tummy with healthy foods! :)
  • I only eat no hormone added/antibiotics eggs, chicken. All other food is organic. Cut out dairy, except for Chobani. And drinking one gallon of water a day. Dumped the salt shaker in the trash and use non-sodium herbs and spices
  • We have been on the journey to eating a clean diet for some years. Most of what I buy now is actual food that I cook from scratch at home.
  • I now read food labels and try to buy the most nutrient dense foods. I try to avoid foods that have a lot of added sugar and trans fats.
  • i already buy a lot of fruits and veggies, have to get better in buying the whole grains..i love whole foods the only store i can buy my dairy free ice cream and my dairy free chocolate.
  • I am incorporating more whole foods and plant based foods into my family's diets. It's slow incoming but working fairly well!
  • I've been slowly exchanging nuts for sugary sweets/candy and to be honest, I'm loving it! I love natural almonds and they have been a excellent snack to pair with a fruit for when I'm hungry between meals. I love Whole Foods!! =)
  • My family and I have been eating plant strong - we mostly buy veggies for our meals and fruits for snacking and smoothies. A lot of our meat dishes now have mushrooms taking over!
  • I currently don't shop at Whole Foods...mainly because it is a little pricey...however I have started to eat cleaner (whole foods, less processed junk) and would love to find a few things that I could purchase regularly. I have visited our local Whole Foods about 2 years ago, and I really loved it and would like to return someday soon (:
  • I have stopped using canola oil altogether. I use olive oil almost exclusively and have found the light olive oil works very nicely in baking.
  • SO funny, but I'm OLD now and I always never thought using some of the "oils" and such was better than "real" things, like we ate since time began, like lard, butter, etc. I was vindicated! I continue to use lard, butter, olive oil in my cooking. Always followed mom's admonition to "eat your veggies! NO sugar!" Most times, Grandma and mom do know best.
  • We have a new Whole Foods..I haven't had a chance to make a visit yet but may thia weekend.I am tring to get my fiance' to eat healthier and so far it is working.
  • I read those nutritional labels and try to shop at the periphery of the grocery store, for the fresh foods.
  • I've been trying item 1. Focus on Whole Foods. When I shop, I try to shop the outside perimeter for unprocessed foods.
  • I mostly buy organic foods. Can't stand to eat any conventional store meat now that I've tried Whole Foods! I also check labels
  • Def looking at ingredients (Always) Looking for healthy and wholesome food for my family. Thank you for the chance :)
  • Before I read this post, I'd never even thought of nutrient density! I love that there's a scale to let you know what foods are more nutritionally dense than others. I am going to start taking that into account when I do my grocery shopping.
  • One thing that I buy organic is Milk, and try to buy organic fruit and vegetables when possible, and use olive oil , Thank you!
  • I didn't know that the bakery doesn't use artificial flavors or colors but I guess that makes sense! Thanks for the tips!
  • I try to slowly get my family on board to eat more healthy, whole foods, but it truly is going to be a slow process. They love there "junk"!
  • I love the idea of going around the perimeter of the store! Never thought about it! Great tip. Thanks for the great giveaways!
  • I am all about eating tons of plant-based foods and a moderate amount of healthy fats. I love Whole Foods for all of the reasons you mentioned
  • I have been working out and trying to eat MUCH healthier. Therefore I find myself reading labels for fat, sodium, cholestrol, and other things that are more harmful than good---sugars, etc. I also buy whole grain.
  • super important! especially having kids we avoid a lot of simple sugars, processed foods and seek out nutrient dense REAL food!
  • My husband is lactose intolerant - we can get many things at Whole Foods that he can enjoy... like their yummy chocolate chip cookies!
  • I'm trying to eat foods with less preservatives and less processed ingredients to stay healthy!
  • I'm very health conscious especially for my kids. I'm constantly reading the nutrition facts and finding healthy alternatives when baking and cooking.
  • We do try to avoid most processed foods when shopping but we do have some grab and go freezer meals on hand.
  • I read labels all the time! Have been making conscious decisions on what I purchase now, Whole Foods has so much to offer
  • My household is plant strong and vegan (except for husband). This is a lot easier in the Summer as we live in New England where the Winters are horrible. We remain vegan but unfortunately eat more starches and less fruits and veggies. We LOVE WHOLE FOODS and shop there when we can.
  • One of the main things we have incorporated into our eating and shopping is eating more fruits, veggies, legumes and rice. This has been so important, especially for my husband who is a diabetic. thank you!!
  • We love to try new things and try to incorporate healthy items into our meal even just a little.
  • I love to visit Whole Foods. Every time I am there I find something new and fantastic to try. We have recently discovered the "joy" of smoothies and are using those to get more fruits/veggies in our diet.
  • I love shopping at Whole Foods because everything that my family needs is right at my finger tips. We try to only eat meat twice a week and we love getting our healthy fats from nuts!
  • Your point about focusing on plant foods mirrors what we are trying to do. We eat meat but it isn't in every single meal like it used to be. Instead we are getting to know kale and quinoa and other things to centre a dish around!
  • Buying whole foods is so important for maintaining health~ I purchase lots of produce and fresh meats each week. Also healthy fats are great too~ I keep nuts and avocados on hand too to get a healthy dose of good fats daily. Thanks for the giveaway!
  • I already eat a plant-based diet and I am trying to eat less processed foods to improve my health. Thanks for the ideas & contest! (:
  • LOVE THIS! I already eat a plant based diet high in raw, alkalizing fruits & veggies :) Although my closest WF is an hour away, it's a fun place to visit & I would love to win a gift card to get some goodies :) Thanks
  • I think eating whole foods and a healthy diet is at least 80% of the battle. The other 20% is exercise. You have to eat the right food to fuel your body. Thank you for the giveaway!
  • I really need to start eating healthy and love the idea of focussing on plant-based foods. I really wish I had the stamina to go on a raw food diet...raw fruit and veg are great, if eating them are too much much effort, then you can use them to make a smoothie and drink it. mmmm!
  • Well, I am vegan (13 years now) so I know all about a plant-based diet. I love the bulk bins and I try to get different beans and lentils every time I shop.
  • I always am amazed at quality and variety of products carried at Whole Foods and the shelves are always well-stocked.
  • We are trying to put more fresh fruits and vegetables into our diet, and we are keeping our eyes out for healthy fats. Thank you for the giveaway!!
  • I strive to incorporate all of what you mentioned into my family's diet each week. We definitely place focus on eating unprocessed foods that are from plant based sources. Thanks for the giveaway!
  • The closest Whole Foods to me is about an hour or so away... well worth the ride. Beautiful store with so many great offerings! I would love to win =)
  • I'm a vegan, so #2 pretty much dictates my shopping trips! And oh, the So Delicious I could buy with $50....
  • I love the healthy options you can find at Whole Foods. It's almost impossible to go wrong with their products. I totally agree with being plant-based, to the point where I don't even include meat in my diet anymore! I just can't find any evidence to convince me that any benefit outweighs its many health risks.
  • I absolutely LOVE Whole Foods Market even though it's a bit pricey I kinda only shop when I have extra money in my pocket and I love eating their spinach lettuce for a salad best way to go I always recommend the greens!
  • I agree with your philosophy. I've always loved fresh from the garden and homemade foods best. Now with all my food allergies, I have to eat that way. Whole Foods is where I have to buy all my food. Organic, without preservatives, as well as soy-free, dairy-free, and egg-free. I couldn't live without them.
  • Nutrient density is important to me. I always keep "superfoods" on hand -- like organic blueberries, walnuts, salmon.
  • I already eat a primarily Paleo diet due to food allergies and mostly avoid packaged foods. I also eat a lot of green! But this gift card would be great for the things I usually get at Whole Foods!
  • I love stores with bulk bins! I try to buy as much stuff there as possible and use my mason jars as storage. Less plastic!!!
  • Whole Foods has some great organic and gluten-free products which I cannot obtain in my small rural town, so I love to visit when I go to the big city, and I spend waaaay too much because it is all so good.
  • I have been trying to cut out all processed foods; it's a very time consuming task though, making everything homemade!!
  • One of the biggest changes that I have made recently is checking the ingredients for sugar and types of sugar. I am pregnant and see the effects with heartburn lately. I never dealt with heartburn this bad before and have to say that it has helped to cut down on the sugar. Hard as it is, it was a must!
  • We have a Whole Foods not too far from me, but I have never been there yet. I am now so excited to go and check it out! I had never heard of the Nutrient Density before!
  • I love having shopping options that help me to make better food choices. This can be healthy for my body by offering foods with less processing or healthy for the environment by offering foods with less packaging. Either way it's good for everyone.
  • I already check labels, sometimes those foods you think are good for you have a lot of hidden fat, sugar and/or sodium
  • I am learning to consider these tidbits when shopping and planning meals. I am trying very hard to focus on eating only healthy fats!! (Its not always easy, because stuff with saturated fats are always so tempting to me!) :(
  • We cook almost all of our meals, hardly ever eating out. I want my children to know that food needs time to be cooked, what it smells like, let them help, and set a standard for their futures.
  • We don't buy any processed foods. We focus on shopping the perimeter of Whole Foods or our local co-op... produce, meat, dairy, bulk (nuts/seeds/grains).
  • I need to do more with nutrient density - I think we have whole foods / Plant based / healthy fats covered but I worry my kids eat too "light" to sustain their energy! LOVE your bulk aisle! I wish our WF up here would do that - instead they have a lot of different "stations" for different things throughout the store but I'd prefer to just get ALL the bulk in one spot! :)
  • Being diabetic, it's important that I follow a healthy diet and I've been trying to eat more natural organic foods, too.
  • We like the tip of walk the outside perimeter and shop. We try to do this and only go down the rows for items on our shopping list.
  • I love to shop at Whole Foods, though I can't buy everything there. Just buying our meat there is a huge chunk of the grocery budget, but I figure we will save in the long run by staying healthier than we would buying it at a conventional supermarket.
  • I always check labels, especially of "healthy" labelled food - you'd be amazed how unhealthy some of them actually are! I am also frequently shocked to see how many brands of 0% nonfat plain greek yogurt have more than 12g of sugar per serving.
  • Everytime I go into Whole Foods, I immediately feel uplifted and reminded of why we eat healthy and why we want to for taste as well as good health. It's easy to find foods that inspire your meal planning. Thanks.
  • While we've been eating a healthy diet for sometime now ~ we really want to start eating more fresh fish. Checking around I've come to the conclusion that Whole Foods has by far the the freshest and best tasting fish and seafood around. Their prices are a little higher - but what you get in flavor and quality still makes it an very good value,
  • I've focused on eating plant-strong for a long time. I try to incorporate a variety of plant based food to make sure I get the nutrients I need. Occasionally I do indulge in processed food, but mostly I try to remain consistent in eating 'whole' foods that don't have the unnecessary additives.
  • I started eating "nutritarian" the day after Thanksgiving, and it does make food shopping easier, because I skip most aisles!
  • I have never shopped at Whole Food before but hope to soon because I am trying to get me and family stating to eat healthy and need more ideas on what is healthy and not. My husband do have diabetes and have to have healthy and the right food.
  • I am a soon to be dietitian and follow several of theses practices. Vegetarian, whole foods, 5 ingredients or less on processed foods and make almost everything from scratch.
  • I too am adding lots more fresh produce/fruits/veggies and organic home made meals into our diets. I now tend to shop around the outside perimeter of the grocery store and much less in the aisles :)
  • I try to follow these practices I need to try harder but I love whole foods I could spend hours there they have such neat things
  • As a Vegan I have long since realized the value of plant based diets and incorporate them in my meals daily. I am alsso happy to say that we are getting a Whole Foods store nearer to us very soon!
  • I try to eat organic, locally-grown food more often. Whole Foods is a great place to get food from! So many great choices!

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