Ever since I was diagnosed with high cholesterol a few years ago, I’ve made much more of an effort to keep up a healthy lifestyle. Nowadays, I park at the very end of the parking lot whenever I go to Target, avoid the cookie aisle altogether, and even take an extra spin around the store to get in a few more steps! I often look to the Internet and magazines for additional tips and information about healthy living, but those resources are typically very general and lack the personal touch that I would like. Fortunately, I’ve discovered a new resource geared just towards me—the grocery store! Many grocers are now offering various ways to help consumers make healthier choices, so whether you’re trying to eat better, lower your blood pressure or find foods that fit into your diet, your local grocer may be able to help! Here are five supermarkets that are making it a little easier to stay healthy.

1. Safeway 

I have to admit that Safeway is my favorite grocery store—I’m often there as much as four or five times each week! During one of my recent visits, I discovered their health kiosk—which had just been installed—and I was thrilled at what it could do! Gone are the days when kiosks simply measured blood pressure. These kiosks, which are located in over 700 Safeway stores and are free to use, offer full screenings for vision, blood pressure and body mass index. They even give users an overall health assessment. You can even store your scores to track and trend your progress so you can see how you’re doing each time you come back! Don’t have a Safeway nearby? No worries! These kiosks are also found in many Sam’s Club and Walmart stores. You can find the closest kiosk to you at SoloHealth.com.

2. Kroger

If you’ve never stopped to inspect the health kiosk at your local Kroger, you may want to go back and take a second look. These kiosks, which are similar to those offered at Safeway stores, offer a full range of services that you would probably never expect to see for free—or at a grocery store! The HealthCenter Kiosks not only check blood pressure, weight, body composition, BMI and vision, but they also provide wellness programs, health videos and online monitoring tools. In fact, users have the ability to upload blood glucose numbers and other biometric results and access their results online, where they’ll also receive tips and guidance to help meet personal fitness and health goals.

3. Whole Foods

It seems only natural that Whole Foods, which specializes in natural and organic products, was one of the first grocers to offer consumers a variety of ways to help them make healthy choices. In fact, many stores even employ Healthy Eating Specialists. These team members answer customers’ questions about the foods that they offer and assist shoppers in making the healthiest choices. They also suggest recipes and assist people in incorporating nutrient-rich ingredients into their diets. To find out if your local Whole Foods offers the services of a Healthy Eating Specialist, check out their store locator here. However, even if your store doesn’t, you can still benefit from Whole Foods’ Healthy Eating Program online, which offers free recipes, meal plans, tips and even a store tour that highlights the healthy options in every department!

4. Publix

I love it when stores make it easy to locate the healthiest options in each department. After all, who really has time to compare the nutritional information on the back of all of those packages? Fortunately, Publix makes it easy by highlighting the healthiest choices in each department with their "Better Choice" tags. These tags, which can be found throughout the store, aim to help consumers find the most nutrient-rich products in no time at all. The company has also partnered with Healthnotes to offer a 24/7 online wellness center, which features information on everything from how to choose and prepare the best foods to weight management tools, fitness tips and much more. Additionally, Publix recently employed a dietician in their Winthrop location to help consumers with their shopping choices, and this test program may be rolled out to additional stores in the near future!

5. Bi-Lo

Bi-Lo is yet another store that is trying to make it as simple as possible for shoppers to find the healthiest choices with their dietician-designed Thrive Program. The program offers fun and useful articles on topics such as healthy foods to eat on the go and quick and healthy recipes using a rotisserie chicken. Users can also access a full range of recipes, including an entire section dedicated to gluten-free. However, my favorite aspect of the Thrive Program are the nutritional tags. Similar to Publix "Better Choice" labels, Bi-Lo offers nutritional tags but takes it even further by offering not just one, but fourteen specific tags! These labels, which include "Heart Healthy," "Whole Grain," "Omega-3" and "Extra Lean," help consumers instantly identify the products that fit into their lifestyle. And to make it even easier, these tags are all color coded so you can easily scan the shelves looking for the tag of your choice. 


Get Healthy with Help from These 5 Grocery Stores