If you’re looking to burn fat, the farmers’ market is often a great place to start. But if you’re not careful, your body goals could be put out to pasture. That’s because among the rows of vendors selling fresh, locally grown vegetables and fruits often lurk tempting fare that can make a pigsty of your clean eating routine.
Potential Farmers’ Market Mistakes
Regardless of the good intentions you may have to fill up your eco-friendly sack with nothing but produce, foxes always have a way of slipping into a hen’s house. Stay mindful on your farmers’ market trek to steer clear of the following potential fat-burning blunders.
Free Samples: Fruit and veggie samples are a great way to try before you buy, which is especially helpful if you’re trying to expand your eating plan to include new tastes. But not all available samples are farm-to-table. Some vendors will use their produce in recipes to show passersby how they can use their goods at home. Try one of everything and before you know it, you’ve made more than a meal of your casual trip to fill up your fridge.
- Baked Goods: Farmers’ markets offer more than the bounty offered direct from Mother Nature; local artisans also set up stalls to sell baked goods of all kinds. Unless you’re keeping your diet low in carbs intentionally, the breads sold can make great additions to parts of your weekly meal plans. Beyond breads are the pastries, doughnuts and other indulgent fare sold as a treat to start your weekend errands off on a sweet step. Take in too many though and it can turn into more of a morning misstep.
- Say Cheese: For farmers who have enough dairy to last until the cows come home, cheese is often the mainstay of their market stalls. From cheddar to curds, artisan cheeses know how to tempt taste buds, and thus override any watch guard you might have on serving sizes. Again, when made part of your weekly meal plan or snacks in moderation, cheese is sure to please. However, when you overdo it on the dairy, don’t expect to melt off as much fat.
- Senseless Snacking: As mentioned, just about any non-produce fare from the food market can work into a meal plan when cognizant of what you’re preparing. But if the food never makes it home because it became a market snack pack, then your meal plan prep is thwarted. If you’re looking for munchies at the market, consider finger-food style produce, such as green beans, cherry tomatoes, pea pods, or blueberries. Check with the vendor to see if what you’re buying has been already been cleaned. If not, some vendors have water to lend a quick rinse, or you could always use a nearby sink, water fountain, or bottled water.
- Food Carts: If you’re looking for more of a meal than a snack and stroll, food carts are often parked roadside and ready to serve up eats of any kind to accompany your farmers’ market visit. Plenty can offer a good start to the day by filling you up with whole, healthy foods to stave off market enticers. That said, not all food trucks are set up with fat loss in mind, and many may test your willpower more than any treat sold in a stall.
Just as healthcare professionals tend to suggest, most foods are fine in moderation. If the farmers’ market is an experience you only enjoy once in a while, eating beyond your fat-burning goals isn’t likely to make a dent in your progress. However, if farmers’ market are a regular affair, keep your sights set on the healthy benefits it has and pass on by those stalls offering anything otherwise.