If you have considered monitoring your caloric intake and activity level, it means you are on the right track. There are benefits to recording your food intake and activity level, particularly if you would like to lose weight. It should also help you with other goals, such as reducing your blood sugar.
Tracking your food intake is no easy task. It is something you need to do meticulously if you are to do it at all. It is also the best way to know if you have been underestimating your intake. This happens to be one of the most common weight loss mistakes as most people eat more than they realize.
Until you develop an accurate gut feeling that comes with time and practice, you should monitor your intake carefully to understand exactly how much you consume on an average day. Tracking your intake has the added benefit of ensuring minimal error with your weight loss goals.
The common food label states the recommended daily value for each nutrient is based on a 2000-calorie diet. A 2000-calorie diet is known as the standard. But the standard does not consider your individual situation or the fact you may be wanting to lose weight. The odds are your daily caloric intake should be lower than if you are to lose a pound each week.
But let us focus on the monitoring itself. If you have not tracked your nutrition before, you should make it a habit for at least two weeks. Track everything you consume from the moment you wake up to when you fall asleep. Counting all food includes…
- the half of an apple,
- the one biscuit,
- the teaspoon of sugar in your coffee, and even
- the glass of wine you have in the evening.
There are many online applications you can use to determine how many calories you should eat each day to lose “x” amount in a given period. MyFitnessPal is one good example. Often, you will find the foods you eat in the application. All you will have to do is a quick search and specify your serving size. Alternatively, you could add your items manually.You could also record your physical activity in the same application. But it should be said, carefully monitoring your nutrition is more important.
After a couple of weeks, you should have plenty of data to draw your conclusions. Did you drop any weight? If not, lower your daily calories by 100 to 200 until you make progress. If so, good job, and change nothing until you stall.
Your data should also provide more information, such as where most of your calories are coming from. Commonly, it is carbohydrates for most people.
At the end of the day, self-monitoring is yet another tool you can use to take charge of your health and well-being by lowering your blood sugar and losing weight.