ShopRite just launched a "Healthy Holidays" campaign with the goal of helping shoppers approach their food this holiday season armed with tools and ideas for healthier eating. The new program includes an in-store sampling of "better-for-you" foods, free nutritional advice from wellness experts, and a downloadable recipe book that has transformed traditional holiday foods into healthier versions.

We think all supermarkets can help their shoppers in their own ways, so here are just a few tips on guiding your shoppers into a healthier holiday season.

  • Encourage your shoppers to NOT just be seduced by treats and sweets everywhere. Best way to do this is to help shoppers plan ahead and prepare meals from scratch at home, or combine homemade and with ready-made or takeout foods from your store's grocerant - i.e. pick up a rotisserie chicken, steam some veggies and assemble a salad from scratch at home. Having a plan will help them avoid the many indulgences this holiday season.
  • Encourage your shoppers to think about all the gatherings and festivities they may be attending, and plan on contributing delicious, healthy foods of their own. You store can offer up recipes or prepared party portions of dishes or snack trays from your deli or grocerant.
  • Your store dietitian can help promote sit-down dinners with family/friends and eating slowly. Eating meals with others can be a pleasant and relaxing social activity, which is a necessary component of a healthy lifestyle. Also, taking the time to eat slowly allows you to have a greater appreciation for the taste of your food. In fact, you can actually taste and enjoy what you are eating, which in turn may lead to making healthier food choices. And eating slower will also help you to stop eating when you are full.
  • Help your shoppers avoid too much alcohol consumption. Alcohol is a source of calories, and adding mixers adds to the caloric load. As a retailer, you can make suggestions for wines or cocktails that are lower in calories and sugars, and also offer up some festive non-alcoholic choices.
  • Include the kids in the food preparation process. Offer up kid-friendly recipes that parents can work on with their children. Having an extra set of hands can help speed along preparation, but will also teach kids about proper cooking and food hygiene techniques.
  • And last but not least, guide your shoppers by showing them they can indulge occasionally! After all, it is the holiday season! Offer up smaller portions of items in the bakery like 1/2 pies and cakes or smaller cases of cookies and brownies.