You May Be Eating More Than You Think — Here's How Food Journaling Can Help

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4 min read
fairly easy
Can you remember every meal you ate this week? If not, you're not alone. But studies indicate that food journaling can help you reach your dieting goals.
Ask any health expert and they'll tell you that, sadly, there is no magic cure to losing weight. Yet as soon as you type a few words into Google to get started, you may find yourself flooded by a deluge of dieting tips and techniques, all claiming to offer the ultimate weight loss hack. So how can you actually begin to work on shedding some extra pounds?

For starters, it can be easy to lose track of what — and how much — you eat in a day. Research points to food journaling as a potential solution. This simple method of journaling every meal can prove to be an essential guidebook for your weight loss journey. A food journal can prove to be much more than a diary that mentions the brownie you had for dessert. It has the power to reveal unhealthy food patterns, dispel portion-size myths, and even reveal emotions behind when and why you eat.

How Do You Start Food Journaling?

The concept of food journaling is true to its name. To begin, all you have to do is write down everything you eat and drink throughout the day. Sounds easy, right? In fact, you don't even have to pull out your smartphone or install any new mobile apps. A person can opt to use pen and paper to track their food choices on any given day explains Su-Nui Escobar, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. It's important to write down everything you eat and drink, she says, and also note portion sizes and preparation methods. This is where the traditional pen and paper method can come in handy; specifically, for writing yourself extra notes in the diary's margins.

You may be wondering what, exactly, you should track in a food diary. The answers depend on the goal you wish to achieve. What, when, where, and why — these basic questions may help you jumpstart the process. According to Harvard Health Publishing, successful food journaling needs to be both accurate and concise.

It seems simple enough to write down what you're eating each day of the week. But it's important to also consider…
Donna Sarkar
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