"Everyone knows the more you wear pearls, little by little they become real....And isn't it the same with memories?" - The Madwoman of Chaillot

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Lose It - the power of technology and keeping a food diary - and losing a lot more weight!

So after deciding to get serious about losing weight - being faced with my Withings scale telling me my weight every day - I looked into iPhone apps. I had tried back in the 60's and 70's to keep a food diary but what a pain when you had to write it down and try (usually in vain) to find the particular food in a little book showing the amount of calories in foods.

Current research shows that people who keep a food diary lose a lot more weight than those who don't - its time to get started!

BUT now we have such a better way. I've tried a lot of them - I'm never satisfied, always looking for something new, something more fun, cuter, whatever. I settled on the iPhone app Lose It. It works well and has nice graphics (ok, I like that). Its now also out for Android phones. They've published a book, added bar code reading, its used by at least some of your friends most likely.  As I said I've tried others before and since and still stick with this one as having most of the features I could possibly want.

Here's how it works - for each day (and it can be done after the fact), click on Add Food - either search foods by name, by ones you've previously used (a shorter list), or add a whole previous meal, say if you've had the same breakfast every day. It also has grocery store processed foods brands and restaurant menus.

OR just scan the barcode with your phone and it knows all the nutritional information. If you can't get the exact thing, I just go with something close, that works...

You get credit for a lifestyle based number of calories used based on whether you say you are sedentary, very active or inbetween. Then you add any exercising you do above that level.

The way I used this to lose weight was I didn't allow myself to eat more calories if my food so far was over budget for the day - I'd go do some exercise to earn it. This actually worked if I was honest and stuck to it!!

Withings scale links to this so LoseIt always knows your weight - easy as can be!

Now I link to my fitness tracker and it adds in the extra for me - at least by the end of the day when I've earned more than my base level.

THis app is even easier than I made it sound and I WHOLEHEARTEDLY recommend it!!

Don't have a smart phone? Its OK - this is also on the website Loseit.com - you can enter everything there and look at all the pretty information - join groups, set challenges to compete with others, set goals just for yourself - so much its amazing.

See links below to the apps and book - next post is on my use and testing of fitness trackers.

Lose It iPhone App (free)

Lose It Android App (free)

Lose It Book - also Kindle edition

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