Whether you’re trying to lose weight or just want to eat healthier, food journaling could add huge benefits. Yes, it’s one more thing to add to your full list of things but, in the long run, tracking what you eat can benefit you for life! So, what’s the best way to go about food journaling + why would you even want to? We’ve got some answers that may inspire you.
WHAT IS A FOOD JOURNAL?
Also known as a food diary or a food log, a food journal is essentially a record of everything you eat and drink in a given day – ideally every day. It can provide information and insight into your relationship with food and patterns you have that are helping you or possibly preventing you from living up to your healthiest potential.
WHAT DO I INCLUDE IN FOOD JOURNALING?
The obvious things to include in your food journal are what you eat and drink, but it’s important to note that you should include everything you’re consuming – not just the things you want to out down! Did you add croutons to your salad or creamer to your coffee? That counts!
For some, their journals get a little more involved. If you want to paint a more complete picture of your intake and lifestyle, it may be helpful to include additional notes such as:
- Time of day
- How long you spent eating
- Where you were
- What you were doing
- How you felt during and after you ate
- How hungry you actually were/hunger signals you noticed
WHY SHOULD I BE FOOD JOURNALING
Food journals can be tools in health programs for patients and participants to evaluate and adapt their diets to suit a healthier lifestyle unique to them, but they also keep you honest!
Even though it’s humbling to hold yourself accountable for those times when you may have fallen short, there’s still plenty of room for congratulating yourself on the days you do well! Pasqual notes that keeping a food log isn’t just for showing you what you do wrong. Tracking both good and bad days allows you to reflect, seeing how you felt on your 100% days as well as when you weren’t feeling your best.