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Tips on Keeping a Food Diary
One of the most powerful tools in weight loss success, apart from eating correctly and adequate exercise, is keeping a food log or nutritional journal. A nutritional journal is basically a record of what you ate every day and helps you to asses your eating patterns, while identifying potential unhealthy patterns.
It’s both scary and amazing to see, in black and white just how much food you are consuming every day. While you may think you’re eating too little, or not eating any “junk food”, having a record of it in your food diary will ensure that you know exactly what you’ve eaten, which may help you get to the root of any weight problems.
Keeping a record of your food intake, not only helps you identify your eating patterns now, but it may also be a very handy tool in helping you create a nutritional program that keeps you satisfied, happy and healthy.
Here are a few helpful tips to help you start your own nutritional journal:
Write it ALL down: Whether you ate “healthy food” or not, write it down. By excluding foods you think make you look bad, you will only be cheating yourself.
Don’t forget the little things: Things like coffee, sugar, soft drinks, juices, milk, sauces, dressings and gravies all add up, so don’t forget to document when you ate these too.
Quantity: It is important to write down how much and which foods you ate. Now this doesn’t mean you have to go around with a scale attached to your pocket, but remember to note the size of the portion, for instance, half a cup of brown rice with about 200g of fillet steak and 2 tablespoons of creamy pepper sauce.
Mood monitor: It’s a good idea to record your mood and how each food made you feel. For instance, if you were in a stressful meeting with the boss and ate a chocolate straight after, you can pinpoint that when you are feeling stressed you eat chocolate. This may seem silly at first but it really helps you pinpoint emotional problems.
Author: Dimi Ingle
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