What Can a Grocery Store Tell a Wellness Coach?

While it’s not commonly one of the questions taught to individuals earning their CWC as a Certified Wellness Coach, it’s a great question nonetheless!  Next time you speak with your wellness clients, you may want to ask them “What can your grocery store tell us about your health and wellness?”  You’re likely to get an odd look from your client, but the discussion that will ensue might very well help generate significant progress…

Allow me to explain.  Most national grocery stores now send out “customized” coupon books to their customers.  These coupons mirror or closely mimic our buying patterns, drawing us back to the store for a few dollars in discounts (where we then spend hundreds of dollars, of course).  The latest mailing from our grocery included coupons for the following:

  • Frozen Blueberries
  • Whole Peppers
  • Sabra Hummus
  • Fage Greek Yogurt
  • School supplies
  • Mentos Mints
  • Gluten Free Bread
  • Cereal Bars
  • Organic Peanut Butter
  • Dog Food

Interesting. With a couple of exceptions (Mentos and Cereal Bars), these are some of our most commonly purchased items!  And thus, it’s a peek into (at least a small window) of our – and our dog’s – eating habits.  It’s just a peek, so you wouldn’t put too much stock in what your client discovers.  However, it’s a stong indicator!

Want to go beyond the initial “hmmm” discussion with your client (or your own family)?  Play a little game of “Move the Grocery Dial.”  It’s simple:

  1. Count up the total # of coupons
  2. Categorize each one as “Healthy” or “Unhealthy” or “N/A” (like the school supplies)
  3. Eliminate the N/A coupons from the equation
  4. Divide the “Healthy” number by the “Total” number for a Healthy Coupon Scan

So in our case, there were 10 coupons total… 2 n/a (dog food and school supplies)…6 generally healthy and 2 generally unhealthy (definititions vary for each based on how much, specific health requirements, etc but you get the idea).  So our “Healthy Coupon Scan would be 6/8 or 75%.

Our health and that of our clients isn’t a game – it’s very serious stuff.  However, thanks to the picture provided each of us by our grocery store, we have a new tool for moving the dial in the right direction!

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