Many people underestimate the power of keeping a food diary when it is in fact a very valuable tool when it comes to weight management. Keeping a food diary is an efficient way to keep track of the amount of calories you consume every day. Whether your goal is to lose weight, manage a health condition or simply maintain a healthier diet, investing time and effort in a food diary will help you achieve your goals successfully.

There are several ways you can keep and use a food diary. For example, you can go the old school way and keep a physical diary where you write down all your meals throughout your day. Or, if you prefer there are many apps available that you can download directly on your phone, tablet or other mobile device of your choice that are really effective and user friendly. By using these apps you eliminate the need to look up the number of calories in your meals and have the convenience of adding up your calorie count for each day with a simple push of a button!

Keeping a food diary is easy! Here are a few reasons why keeping a food diary would be beneficial to you:

1. A food diary can help you stay on track

Whether you are considering the use of a food diary or not, you most likely have some sort of health goal and even if losing weight is not your priority, we are sure that staying on track to meeting your personal health goals is important to you. You may not realize it right away but over time, keeping a food diary will actually make you want to eat healthier. This is because every time you keep track of a food that has a lot of calories in it, you will become aware of this and you will want to avoid it again in the future. In fact, a food diary can help you look at food in a whole new way! Before you know it you will habitually start being more mindful of what you put in your body and eating healthy will become a lifestyle. Your food diary will not only help you explore and enjoy new foods, but it will also give you a reason to try to reduce your daily calories and thus, help you stay on track.

2. A food diary shows you what you eat

When it comes to food diaries, this is probably one of the most underrated aspects of keeping a food diary. You may be thinking you do a pretty good job of remembering what you eat everyday already, so what does this mean? This means that even though you may think you are aware of everything that you eat and you may have a pretty good idea of how any calories you take in through your meals, the truth is that most people eat more than three times a day. This also means that most people don’t realize that the extra little snacks in between meals actually do count toward your total daily calorie intake. This is especially important for people who are trying to lose weight because keeping track of all calories consumed really does matter, it really does make a difference. So, even if you think you can keep track of what you eat in your mind, you will be surprised what a difference keeping a food diary will make when you actually see what you are eating each day.

3. Keeping a food diary is a great tool for weight loss

Seeing exactly what you eat each day is essential for weigh loss success. When you keep a food diary, you can begin to cut certain types of food out of your diet. Changing eating habits is a learning process and you might be surprised to see that some foods you thought were healthy might actually be high in calories, fats or carbs. Being aware of what you put in your body will help you determine how to adjust your diet accordingly for maximum results. Not only is this aspect important for weight loss, but also plays a major role in keeping the weight off (for good).

These are some pretty significant advantages, and really you have nothing to lose by giving it a try. If anything, try a food diary for yourself and think of the experience as a learning process. Either way, you will gain something positive; food diaries are an amazing tool for anyone who is really serious about making life-long lifestyle changes.

So my challenge this week is for all of you to either write down or keep a record of everything you eat and drink this week-everything! And next week I’ll give you part 2 of food diary blog and how it will be a regular part of 170 club.

I use My Fitness Pal but there are many other fantastic apps, I just prefer the layout and have got used to the format of this app.