Keeping a food diary is a great tool when you’re working on losing weight and getting healthy. It’s not about counting calories either! Food logs give you a chance to see which foods are giving you the most benefit and what isn’t working for you.
I decided to keep a food diary so I could finally pinpoint where my laziness was really affecting my diet. I’m someone who has always done “well enough” when it comes to eating healthy, but that always meant more just following the general guidelines (avoid fast food, don’t spoil your appetite with cookies) than really understanding how food factored into my life.
This exercise revolutionized the way I think about health. It made me think about everything I was putting into my body and why I was choosing those particular foods. Whether it was stress, anxiety, or exhaustion, it revealed so much about my relationship with food. So here’s what I learned from keeping a food diary!
I actually eat the healthiest when I’m eating out.
I think it’s a combination of my laziness when it comes to cooking as well as the fact that I’m a lot more careful to avoid those rich, heavy dishes on the menu, but I do tend to choose more plant-based meals when I’m dining out at a restaurant. It’s when I’m home and I can easily throw a frozen pizza in the oven that I run into a problem! This really encouraged me to learn some healthy, new recipes and work on getting those basic cooking techniques down.
A blender can be your best friend.
It wasn’t uncommon for me to get halfway through the day and realize that, while it had technically done the job of filling me up, that black coffee and piece of toast I’d wolfed down that morning didn’t exactly give me the feeling that I’d achieved anything health-wise when I saw that was all I had in my food diary. Enter, the blender. Throwing together a smoothie bursting with all the essentials vitamins and nutrients you need takes less than 10 minutes. You will love seeing that in your diary!
Coffee and tea are not an excuse to order pastries too.
So it turns out I have a bit of a sweet-tooth and I’d become a bit more dependent on my morning cup of coffee and croissant than I’d realized! Same goes for tea – I’ll always reach for a couple cookies or crackers to accompany a hot cup in the evenings. That adds up and starts to become a lot of sweets after a while. I’m not suggesting you give up the muffins altogether, but try to make it less of a routine.