Beware the grocery store end-caps

We all know why you don't go grocery shopping on an empty stomach: everything you see will make your mouth water, and you'll end up buying four times the food you need. The best advice for grocery shopping is to make a list and stick to it.

Most savvy shoppers do this, but even the most disciplined shoppers occasionally bend their own rules for something that looks like a good deal, or just too yummy to pass up. Items featured in the shelves at the end of each row, known as end-caps, can be a nasty trap. We often assume that these items are on sale because of their location, but that's not always true. In fact, these items could be here (on sale or not) simply because the store needs to unload them quickly -- check the expiration dates!

You may also notice that featured items are almost always junk food like chips and cookies. Why is that? Junk food is addictive. If they can get you to buy those cookies this week, chances are good you'll put them in your cart again next week, even if they're not on sale. Keep it up and you're not just buying cookies, but you're going to need to invest in larger pants, too.

If you didn't want it enough to put it on your list before you saw it, you aren't going to miss it when it's not in your cupboards at home. Leave these consumer traps on the shelves.

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