Keeping a food journal was not a task I did daily. It was not until September of 2014, that I joined my first Challenge Group on Facebook. I was asked to write down what I ate each day from my coach. We would share our Food Journal each evening as a way of accountability. It was very eye opening!!
For one thing, when you write down what you eat, you are bringing awareness to an area you might not ordinarily think much about. It makes you more purposeful and cuts down on mindless eating. My mindless eating was grabbing food off of my kids plates or eating as I am cooking. All things I never thought counted, but when I was more aware to write down what I was eating I noticed how much “extra” food I was eating each day.
A food journal can also help you focus in on areas that you need to change in order to lose weight or just be healthier overall. Ask yourself some of these questions…
Are your portions too large?
Are you getting too many calories from beverages?
Are you drinking enough water?
Do you snack too much?
Do you eat enough vegetables?
I was a snacker and my plates barely had any vegetables on them! I was shocked the first week and how little vegetables I was eating daily. I was loading up on proteins and carbohydrates though! I liked vegetables but just did not have them part of my meal plan.
So, think about your struggles and adjust your food journal to meet your needs.
Are you an emotional eater? Be sure to record your feelings when you eat. This was another area of mine that I still have to focus on. When I would get stressed, I ran to my chocolate or junk food to feel better in that moment. It took me a long time to slowly learn certain practices to overcome and change that habit in my mind. If you tend to have portions that are too large, start recording your portion size on your food journal. If you aren’t drinking enough water, then set your goal for the day at the top of your food journal. Then, I personally divide out the times I will drink water to make sure I am reaching my water intake goal each day. You should drink half your body weight in ounces of water a day.
It all starts with a pen and paper. I have a notebook I use and write my water intake down along with what I did that day. You can also use your notes app on your phone. I later started to record how I was feeling before a meal and after a meal. I learned that I was sensitive to dairy and white flour by seeing how my body felt after certain meals. It just takes being more aware and recording it consistently, to really see the areas you need to start to focus on.
I would be happy to help you in this journey. Send me an email HERE and we can start talking about your goals. It is not about changing everything drastically. It is about slowly adding in healthy habits, like writing a food journal, to your day that will start you on a healthier lifestyle you will keep. One step at a time. You got this!