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Time to Snub the Clubs?

Volume discount vs. voluminous waistline? If you buy more, you'll probably eat more!

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The prospect of getting extra bang for their food buck has more people perusing
warehouse-style club stores like Costco and Sam’s Club. But the urge to stockpile large amounts of food in the house may lead to calorie overload.

A paper in the Journal of Marketing Research found that club store shoppers buy about 3,500 more calories a month—mostly nonperishable packaged foods—than they would if they didn’t shop at these outlets. And there is a good chance people who lug home extra calories are likely to eat many of them, which could have waistline repercussions. To resist the urge for a jumbo-sized container of chocolate-covered almonds, people should bring along a detailed shopping list and use club stores mainly for lower-calorie, healthier staples, like bags of frozen berries and whole grains.

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD, is a James Beard Award–winning food journalist, dietitian and author of the cookbook Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sport + Adventure (VeloPress 2016). He has written for dozens of magazines, including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Shape, Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness.

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