I want to lose weight this year and keep it off….
When you’re trying to lose weight, one of the smartest and easiest steps you can take is to keep a daily food diary. A food diary is just like what it sounds—a notebook in which you record your daily food intake. You can track a number of things in your diary making it a complex tracking tool or you can keep it simple. In either case, this is a great way to help yourself stick to a weight loss plan and reach your goal.
- First, consider just listing your daily menu. This will help you actually see what you eat on any given day and notice patterns of unhealthy eating that you never considered before. Some people like to also record calories, protein, fiber, fat, and other nutrients. Portion size may be recorded as well. You can also list the reasons you’re eating other than hunger, the cravings you experience, any events in your life that day and your feelings about your diet on any given day. It is your diary, so record what you want and what is right for you.
- When you start a food diary, keep in mind that you don’t have to keep a traditional journal by the bed with a lock and key. You can use whatever kind of recording and writing tools you like best. For some people, the traditional journal or just a plain notebook works fine. You can also keep a food diary online I’m sure there are plenty available or make one up on your computer. Simply open up a word processing program and keep the icon on your desktop. Others like to use Excel or other data entry programs, these will help out a lot when it comes to adding totals at the end of the day. You can keep your food diary on a laptop or palm pilot, or slip a notebook into your bag during the day—whatever works best for your lifestyle and whatever you will be able to stick to. To see results and to really be able to use the food diary as a helpful tool for your weight loss you need to use it consistently.
- You may wish to note in your diary when you hit certain weight loss goals or when you gain weight in order to look for causes. You can show your diary to your doctor, nutritionist or trainer or even discuss it with our weight loss partner, if you have one. This will help you stay on right track and get the most out of your diary.
Remember to update your food diary every day and review it at the end of each week in order to track your progress Food diaries work great for many people, so you should consider starting one today in order to lose the most weight possible.