Grocery shopping is crucial to good health. Your fitness levels greatly depend on the choices you make at the store. But you might find yourself picking out more stuff than required, to avail of seasonal offers and discounts, or simply to save another trip to the store.

If you end up buying a whole lot, you will be faced with another challenge: to use all of it before the products expire, or to store them well enough. We suggest the latter. Overeating to avoid wastage could lead to ill health and unwanted weight gain. It’s best to store your food, and use it as and when required.

Every food item comes with its own shelf life and storage methods. Is honey best kept in the refrigerator, or in a closet? How can you store cheese without ruining its texture? We share tips on storing some of the most common groceries, safely and correctly. This will retain maximum nutrition, and save you the trouble of food wastage.

1. Meat & Poultry


Freeze it below 40 degrees, and most meat products will last anywhere from four months to a year (except for processed meats like bacon and sausage, which will last for one to two months). Do not eat meat that smells like vinegar or ammonia, or is slimy and faded. To defrost meat or poultry, do so in the refrigerator.

2. Leafy Green Vegetables


No matter how low you turn the temperature of the refrigerator, these greens could wilt away sooner than expected. Here are some quick tips to keep them from withering away:

  • Wash your greens, and be sure to dry them well. If they’re not dried properly, they will retain moisture, and wilt sooner.
  • You could also use a salad spinner to dry the greens efficiently and thoroughly.
  • Then, take a storage container and lay a paper towel on the bottom, and on the sides.
  • Place your greens inside in such a way that they are not packed in tightly.
  • Allow them to have some breathing space so that they remain fresh. Shut the container well, and use whenever needed.

3. Honey


As long as you carefully store honey in a well-sealed container, and in a cool, dry place, it won’t ever go bad. There’s no need to refrigerate it. Believe it or not, archaeologists have found pots of honey in ancient Egyptian tombs that are edible till date. However, there is one important criterion to keep in mind. You can only preserve honey in its natural state, without any added water.

4. Eggs


They should be stored in the refrigerator for not more than three to five weeks after purchase. Hard-boiled eggs that are cooled before storing in the refrigerator last up to a week.
Store them in the carton to reduce moisture leakage from the porous shells. If you find a cracked egg on purchase, discard immediately. But if you crack one in the process of transferring it from the grocery bag to the refrigerator, store it in a container and use it in a baked recipe within a couple of days.

5. Milk


If you refrigerate pasteurized milk immediately after purchase, it might last three to seven days, but can go sour fast if left outside. Always smell it before using, and if it smells bad, don’t hesitate to discard it.

6. Cheese


While harder varieties such as Swiss, cheddar or blue cheese are good for up to six months after their sell-by dates, you shouldn’t eat soft cheeses or cream cheese that’s more than two weeks old. If you happen to find some mold on your hard cheese, just scrape it away and feel free to eat the rest. Always wrap cheese in wax paper when storing in the refrigerator, since it tends to absorb other food odors easily.

Apart from these food hacks, here’s a video that features some additional tips that might surprise you.

Explore our Wellness section for spa DIY, natural home care and more. 
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After pursuing her Masters in Journalism, Vanessa got her first big job as a health writer and since then, she has never switched paths. She has always been intrigued by the wonders of a holistic lifestyle, and believes it was destiny that led her to writing for the wellness industry. In her natural state, you can find her tucked under a blanket watching an Indie film, or reading obsessively. At Z Living, she writes about food trends and other daily life expeditions.