There are many reasons to keep a food diary: it is weight loss control; analysis on food intolerance, habits and addictions.
Why do we need it?
More and more people try to keep a food diary today; it helps them to track all meals. Usually people who just start to keep a diary are very surprised by what they actually eat, because they do not even notice the hidden calories in their diet. Actually, food diary is highly recommended for people who cannot assess their food consumption adequately; it might be because of psychological problems or just because of time shortage. However, this diary will help you to see the clear nutrition picture.
What is your goal?
Before you start your diary, try to understand why do you need it. Is it all about weight-loss or you just want to learn eat intuitively and consciously? Identify the goal and write it in your diary, be honest with yourself, so it will be easier to follow all the instructions further. In order, to make it more convenient you can use special applications: Yazio, Fatsecret, LifeSum, MyFitnePal and others.
How to keep the diary?
Fix everything you eat:
It is necessary to fix everything you eat: breakfast, lunch, dinner, all snacks. Furthermore, do not forget to include all drinks. Such toppings as sugar, salt, sauce, honey and even amount of oil used must be also recorded.
Describe every dish
It is very important to describe every dish by ingredients, not just “meat and buckwheat porridge”. Moreover, you have to record everything immediately or just take photos and record it later.
Give more details
Next to records about the meal try to indicate the weight, calories’ amount and the reason why you ate it. So, it would be easier to understand how reasonable the food intake was; whether you felt hungry at this moment or it was because of boredom.
Food diary is essential because:
The main benefit of food diary is that it shows the source of the problem. In other words, if person with overweight thinks that he does not eat anything special, diary will help to analyze food consumption over the particular period and highlight all problematic moments.
Moreover, people with chronic diseases can fix products that affect the exacerbation: increase of glucose levels in blood, blood pressure fluctuations and an aggravation of gastrointestinal tract diseases.
Food diary also helps to identify daily consumption of proteins, fat and carbohydrates, because it is very important to monitor ratio among these elements. Nutritionists have established following percentages: 20-40% of calories from proteins, 25-35% from fats and 30-50% from carbohydrates. This amount is necessary for healthy body functioning.
As it was mentioned food diary helps to evaluate energy value of the diet, identify regularity of meals and draw some conclusion on it. If you try to keep it just for lose weight, you should understand that weight loss occurs when energy value of food is less than amount of energy expended. So it is not enough just record your food, it would be better if you find a specialist in order to draw up an individual menu.
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