Did you know dieters who keep a food diary or journal will lose twice the weight than those who don’t? Research reveals that a written or electronic account of your food intake makes you more accountable for your actions. Here’s the importance of keeping a food log:
Make Better Choices
A journal shows everything you eat and drink right down to last morsel and taste. In all cases, be sure to include samples at the supermarket, a bite of your kids chicken nugget, or even a sip of beer. For good measure, include the supplements or vitamins you take everyday and any condiments like sea salt and pepper. This tracking regiment also reveals what you might be missing in your diet.
Be a Mindful Eater
Make your meal an event. Sit down, preferably at a table and avoid distractions like TV or electronics. Create healthy patterns that embrace the meal and the nourishment as a ceremony, not as a grab and go mentality. If you can’t find time to sit down for a proper protocol meal, eat an IP Meal Replacement bar instead. As you add meals to your journal, be sure to include personal statements like: “still hungry, feel bloated, or perfect portion” to describe your after dinner state of mind.
Identify Your Triggers
As part of your daily food journal entry, write down the particulars of the environment around you at meal time. Is it hectic, loud, hurried, relaxed, slow? If you feel anxious, sad, or even hungry, write it down. Emotions can sabotage your diet success and lead to auto-eating when you’re not hungry. Your food journal is the key to transparency and what makes you tick.
Review and Plan
Think of your food journal as a business plan for your body. It needs to serve as a resource of what happens next. Review it often, and map out your next strategy. Uncover your strengths and weaknesses with a day-by-day account of meals, triumphs, and challenges. Use visual presentations as reminders of the goal and motivation behind the plan, like month-by-month photos of your progress.
Keep It Simple
Find a method that works for you whether it be paper, iPad, or phone app. If you are into photos and video, use those selfies to record your meals in pictures or short video clips. If you haven’t already, check out IdealSmart, the newest ideal Protein app with a built in journal. This app goes where you do, so you’re never without your journal. If you prefer to write it down, keep your journal handy and be consistent with your entries. Discover what works best for you, but make it convenient; don’t let it become a hassle or you’ll give it up.
Over time, your food journal will serve as a “success story” and a direct illustration of your journey. You may not realize it at first, but your food journal will make you want to eat healthier in all phases of your Ideal Protein journey and beyond. Bottom line, the more you journal, the more likely you are to meet your weight loss goal. If you have more questions about the importance of keeping a food log, contact our coaches at Ideal Solution.