If weight loss is one of your wellness goals, it may be wise to take a better look at what you are eating by using the food logging attribute in the Fitbit app. Experts agree, the simple act of documenting snacks and meals can’t only help you lose more weight, but keep it off for more , also. Yes, all that logging can feel dull at times, but it works! By spending a couple of days spotting where those extra calories are sneaking in, you will gain invaluable insights.
Here are a few ideas to make food logging a small easier and get the maximum out of your data.
Hint #1 Commit to Seven Days. To get an accurate assessment of your eating habits, you need at least a couple of days a week–including one weekend day–but an whole week is even better. You’ll get a sense of how many calories you are typically eating, and can then work out how many calories you should be eating that will assist you reach your goal weight. If you wish to establish new habits, keep logging. And if you wish to lose 5 pounds (or more!) , stick with it for at least a month.
Hint #2 Learn the shortcuts. The fastest way to log is to simply use the plus button at the bottom of your dash and choose”log food” or”scan barcode.” (iOS users on newer devices with touch can perform a hard press the Fitbit app icon and then click on log food.) By tapping the barcode symbol you can then use the camera onto your smartphone to capture the barcode, and voilà! That item should pop up. All you will need to do is pick your size. (Note: This doesn’t mean that you will need to survive on foods that are packed! Lots of fresh produce includes barcodes, too!) You could also use”hottest” and”common” foods while searching for a food item, it will save you time trawling through a long list of brands.
Hint #3 Input your favorite foods after. The first few days are the most tiresome, but rest assured, it gets easier the more you do it. When you go to log food, view the”frequent” and”recent” food lists, where the foods that you eat regularly will automatically appear at the top for quick and easy logging. “Custom” foods require somewhat more work to input, but as soon as you have, they are great for the foods that you eat often, but can not readily find in the database.
Hint #4 Log as you consume . It’s easy to forget the details of a meal when relying on memory. If you absolutely do not have time to log it instantly, have a photo. You might also use silent alarms and set personal reminders to nudge you to log your food at regular meal times, until logging becomes a habit.
Hint #5 But also, plan ahead! Use food logging to meal plan. If you know what you are going to eat for breakfast all week, log it ahead. It’ll make the process quicker, and you will be more inclined to stick with your healthy eating plan if it’s already recorded.
Hint #6 Pay attention to portion sizes. If you are totally new to calorie counting, pull out your measuring cups and spoons, and invest in a kitchen scale. You only have to measure a few times before you will get the gist of how much you should be eating. Plus, check out Fitbit’s visual guide to portion sizes! When you’ve got a rough idea of what 3 oz of steak looks like (a deck of cards), or a cup of pasta (a tennis ball), entering your servings will be quicker, easier, and more precise.
Tip #7 Be truthful. Log every morsel you eat and drink–yes, even the milk in your coffee, the cheese in your taco, and your son’s half eaten cupcake. The more detail you provide, the more accurate the information will be. There’s absolutely not any judgment, guilt, or shame–only the satisfaction of knowing you are that much closer to achieving your weight goal!
Tip #8 Search for patterns. Take note of different triggers and behaviors linked to your own eating. Do you eat something every time you walk into the kitchen? Is 3 p.m. your candy-witching hour? Does a deadline cause you to reach for donuts? By spotting patterns around when, where, and why you eat certain foods, you can develop strategies to prevent them from recurring and start working towards a healthier you.
Embrace the process and approach food logging with a positive attitude–if you like the journey of self discovery, you will be more likely to stick to it.