Whether you want to maintain your health, build your body, or just want to keep a watch on your eating habits. A Food Journal is the best way to keep a track of your eating habits.
It can also be helpful if you want to detect which foods are causing you discomfort or allergy. This is very helpful if you have problems like acidity reflux, or negative symptoms after eating some kind of food.
While you may think of noting down everything that you eat as a hard task, once you have your goals set and you really really want to maintain a proper journal of whatever you intake it can be super easy.
So without wasting time, let’s see what a food journal is, what are its benefits and how can you maintain one.
What Is A Food Journal?
A food journal is a kind of a tool that helps you keep a track of whatever you eat and drink throughout the day.
In addition to mentioning down the names of dishes and beverages you can also note down:
- How much do you consume?
- The time and location.
- How do you felt before, during and after your meal?
Many times doctors, nutritionists and dietitians recommend you to maintain a food journal to get an idea about your eating habits. In some cases they can also use it to determine the foods that can cause you discomfort.
Many people tend to maintain a food journal just for a few days or maybe weeks. But there are people who make it a habit to journal everything they eat and drink. The reason behind maintaining a journal for a long time is that people believe it helps them to make healthy choices.
Benefits of maintaining a food journal
1. Helps Build Healthy Food Habits
Tracking what you eat and drink in the entire day can actually help you become more aware of your eating habits. It makes it easier for you to watch your eating habits and replace them with healthier options.
2. Promotes Weight Control
If losing weight is on your to-do list then maintaining and tracking your food intake is a great option. You can monitor your calorie intake and measure how many calories you are taking in, what you need to cut down and where you need to focus. Food journal can also be a great tool if you are trying to gain weight.
3. Identifies Food Sensitivity
Many times food journals are maintained to identify food sensitivity. If you are suffering from digestive disease like IBS(Irritable Bowel Syndrome) then certain foods can trigger negative symptoms such as stomach pain, bloating or diarrhoea.
Similar to this there are other such conditions including celiac disease caused by gluten insensitivity, acid reflux and food allergies that can get worse by intaking certain foods.
So in these conditions it is necessary to take care of whatever you are consuming and then take action accordingly.
Tips To Get You Started
Keeping a food journal doesn’t always need to be fancy, aesthetic and time consuming. Here are few tips following which you can make it a habit very easily:
1. Keep track as you go
If you are the one out there thinking that writing at the end of the day is time-saving and easy, then you are on the wrong track because you will forget things and you will not be able to maintain a proper track. In addition to that it will become more and more easier for your mind to trick and write improper portions.
2. Note down everything
While a quick snack or a short bite may not seem like a big deal to you, make it a habit to note down all those things. At the end of the day you will come to know how much extra calories you have already eaten slowly and gradually.
3. Be specific
When taking an intake try to mention as many details as possible. While cooking the food try to use standard measuring cups to get proper information about the food that you are consuming. It will help you ace your fitness journey.
4.Consider being digital
Try to use your smartphone smartly. There are various apps available today to help you journal your food habits with great ease. The apps present not only help you write down your food intake but they are also present with an extensive library of foods and recipes with measurements to help you track everything perfectly.
While getting started with food journal keep in mind that there is no right or wrong way to do it. When you begin, try to experiment with different methods, apps and books. Try to note down as many details as you think are relevant. This will help you to track and maintain your body efficiently.