In her weekly iVillage column, Mrs. Obama offers tips on how to shop in an effective and healthy manner.

Now, I know there’s ample opportunity to make fun of Mrs. Obama for this article. It could be criticized as yet another signal that the First Lady thinks we’re all too dumb to do our weekly food shopping.  People could view it as one more attempt by the White House to control how we eat.  But, I don’t agree with these comments.  In fact, I like her column and wish she spent more time giving these types of helpful tips to the American public.

Her column is filled with good advice.  For instance, she suggests shopping on Wednesday nights because that’s when stores are most often restocked and will have the freshest produce.  She reminds readers that meat and bread freeze beautifully so they should take advantage of sales and buy in bulk.  She also suggests making grocery lists and even coming up with menu ideas which will help keep you from making spontaneous purchases. And she support's food writer Michael Pollen’s suggestion that people should shop the perimeter of the store where fresh food is stocked before going into the aisles where the processed food is located.

This isn’t controversial advice. This isn’t finger wagging. With this column, the First Lady offers Americans good, solid information that they can used to make good decisions about their diets. We should praise the First Lady for encouraging Americans to make better food decisions instead of advocating the government make decisions on their behalf.