One of my Transformation Success Secrets is keeping a Food Journal. This is something so basic and so simple to do. Many people think they are aware of the foods and beverages they consume, and generally think they are eating healthy until they start keeping a Food Journal. A Food Journal literally gives you a snap shot of the foods and beverages you consume.
So, what exactly is a Food Journal? What you want to do is keep track of everything you eat and drink for 7 days. Write down the day of the week and what time of the day you ate and/or drank something. It should look something like this:
After keeping a food journal and at the end of 7 days, what does your food journal say about your eating habits?
In my experience looking at hundreds of food journals, I’ve noticed that most people go for long periods of times between meals (6 hours or more) and when they do eat something, it’s usually something unhealthy that is mostly carbohydrates and in some cases go through an entire day without eating a real, complete, whole meal. I’ve also noticed that people tend to eat a lot of 1 particular thing. For example, in one journal, I noticed that a client ate a lot of raisins several times a day, every day. While raisins are a great source of fiber and anti-oxidants, they do contain a lot of sugar. In several cases, I noticed people eating more than 1 banana a day. While bananas are a great source of potassium, the more ripe they are, the more sugar they have. Also, eating too much of any one thing limits nutrients & calories coming from other foods sources. Another common pattern I’ve discovered is that most diets are high in carbohydrates and lack lean proteins, healthy fats, fibrous fresh fruits and vegetables. Essentially, most people aren’t getting enough nutrients in their diets and aren’t taking a good quality whole food multi-vitamin. Many of these common habits sabotage your weight loss efforts. A food journal is the best way to find your nutritional mistakes and correct them.
A great resource to help keep track of your food is a free website called http://myfitnesspal.com Not only can you track your food, you will also be able to track your intake of protein, carbohydrates, fats and total caloric intake.
At the end of 7 days, you’ll get a clearer picture of what your eating habits are and how you can improve on them. Another benefit of keeping a food journal is that you will become more aware of the food and beverage choices you make. This awareness will help you make better food choices.
Leave your comments on this article and let me know what you learned from keeping a journal.