Keeping a food diary does not have to be a scary thing. As a student and also someone who tries to keep track of what I consume, keeping a food diary is very helpful. But I, just like most people forget to record some foods or lie to myself and make a snack or meal look healthier or more nutritious than it actually was. My food diary has helped me mindfully eat and think about food before consuming it.
A food diary can be defined as a detailed record of food and drink consumed over a certain period of time, usually 3 days. This method is used to represent a person’s typical intake over the specified period of time. They can be used to calculate = calories consumed and identify food patterns. The Journal of Dietetic Association performed a study that suggests that food journaling has shown a positive correlation between self monitoring food intake and weight loss.
Keeping a food diary can help practitioners find exact problems to help tackle and determine what foods can be eliminated as well as good habits that are already present. Just a few changes can be simple fix that can make big changes in your health journey. Not only will food diaries help practitioners they can also benefit the person themselves. Food diaries can hold the person accountable for what they are eating and prevent consumption of those guilty pleasure foods.
Here are a few helpful hints on what to including when keeping your personal food diary:
Your mood while you eat.
1 Were you happy, hungry, bored, mad or stressed.
2 Who did you eat with?
1 Did you eat with family, friends or by yourself.
3 Where did you eat?
1 Did you eat at the table, in the car or at your desk.
4 When did you eat?
1 Time of day (breakfast, lunch, dinner, afternoon snack, midnight snack)
Keeping track of these things listed above can help you determine times of weakness, track down a food if you get sick, or remember foods you really like.
Now, I challenge you to keep a food diary and try to make changes to a healthier, happier you!
Cox College Dietetic Intern