Keeping a food diary raises awareness of eating habits and helps identify barriers to weight loss. Start with these suggestions.
Research suggests that one of the best ways to change unhealthy eating habits is to first keep track of them. Which makes sense considering most of us underestimate how much we actually eat in a day. By identifying patterns of unhealthy food choices in a record you keep, you can begin to change them.
Create a food diary that includes the following
The date and day of the week
Also note the exact time or general time of day, such as morning, noon, or evening.
All the foods you eat and drink
Be specific about types and amounts, and include details such as added fats, sugars, butter, honey and other sweeteners, and beverages.
Measure or estimate size by volume, weight or number of items.
Your position when you eat
Write down where you are, whether it’s in your car, at your desk, or on the couch, and whether you’re eating alone or with someone else.
What you do while you eat
Pay attention to what keeps you busy, like watching TV or going to a restaurant.
How do you feel: happy, sad, stressed?
To make your food count worthwhile, be honest and write down every bite you eat. If you don’t write everything down, you won’t have an accurate picture of your consumption. For the most accurate results, try to log your food intake within 15 minutes of your meal. Use a daily food diary to help you keep track of your intake.