Grab a cart
A study in the Journal of Marketing Research shows that shopping with a basket instead of a cart makes you nearly seven times more likely to purchase vice foods like candy and chocolate. The researchers say that curling your arm inward to carry a basket increases your desire to embrace instant rewards like sweet foods. With a cart, you tend to extend your arm, a motion associated with avoiding negative outcomes. That makes you more likely to shop smart.
The longer you are exposed to tempting snacks at the checkout, the more likely you are to succumb to them, say University of Arizona researchers. Avoid the wait by shopping during off-peak hours, such as the middle of the week or late at night.
Leave the kids at home
Children should not have a vote in supermarket decisions," says Greg Critser, author of Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World. About 80% of parents report they will probably buy snacks or frozen desserts if their kids ask for them at the grocery store, according to a Mintel report.