1. Choose Your Medium: I suggest either pen and paper or a phone app, either of which you can carry at all times so it is readily available. If you go with a mobile phone app or computer site, I HIGHLY recommend MyFitnessPal!
    2. Write It Down Right Away: Each nibble, each graze needs to be recorded for your food journal efforts to be effective. If you put it in your mouth, record it!
    3. Learn What To Write Down: Of course you want to record the food or beverage you are consuming, but there are other variables that may be beneficial to staying on track and being successful such as:
      1. Nutrient Data: I always suggest to record calorie content, ALWAYS. You may want to also be keeping track or certain nutrients or how much fat, protein, or carbohydrate is in what you are consuming.
      2. Meal Times: This can help you see if you are eating too often, not often enough, continuously grazing. You may notice you overeat when you eat too frequently or go long periods without. Eating every four hours is ideal, but most importantly, listen to your body.
      3. Locations and Companions: This can help you identify how your eating is influenced by outside circumstance. Do you eat while watching TV or at the kitchen table? Do you overeat when with friends? Are there certain people that inspire healthy eating habits to go out the window?
      4. Hunger Scale: Scale between 1 and 5 how hungry you are when you eat. It can help identify emotional eating or overeating due to being too hungry.
      5. Emotions: If you suspect that you tend to eat in response to emotions or stress, it may be a good idea to note this. It can help which emotions cause you to eat and which foods create certain emotions. This can help you find other coping mechanisms other than eating.
    4. Measure Your Portions: When beginning, it may be a good idea to invest in a food scale. You may be surprised what actual portions really are. Remember to record what you consume when dining out. Try to get the exact nutritional data, if it is not available, look up something comparable. Normally, you can find the information online.
    5. Be Honest: This is a tool to help aid you. It will help you find patterns and habits that adversely affect your weight along with helping you to stay on track. Learning how to change your eating habits can seem like a chore but the payoff is far more valuable than not doing so. You are worth it!

If you are like me and find pen and paper to be super effective, grab my FREE weekly food journal and start logging TODAY!

Do you currently log your food? What do you find most effective about it?



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