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Calorie Tracking Websites

Old 02-15-15, 06:47 PM
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Calorie Tracking Websites

What is your favourite calorie tracking website ... diet journal?


I have used:

FitDay ... FitDay - Free Weight Loss and Diet Journal

Daily Plate or My Plate ... MyPlate Calorie Tracker and Fitness Program | LIVESTRONG.COM


And I have referred to Nutrition Data ... Nutrition facts, calories in food, labels, nutritional information and analysis – NutritionData.com ... to create my own tracking spreadsheet.


I have found all three have good points, and I have lost weight when I have used them. But I've also found all three to be a real time-consuming pain to use, so I usually only use them for about 3 weeks before I run out of patience with them.

The biggest difficulty I have had with them is that I eat a fairly similar diet one day to the next. But there doesn't seem to be a way to copy and paste Monday's food for the rest of the week or month, and then make small changes to each individual day as necessary. Instead I have to enter everything from scratch each day, and that takes up so much time.

The next difficulty is that the sites often don't have the food I'm eating in their list, and I have to track down the nutritional information for what I eat and enter it all ... either that or select something that is sort of close.

In the past I have found myself spending half an hour to an hour each day entering food ... and I keep thinking that there has to be a quicker and easier way to do this.


Now, the last time I've used those sites was 2011 ... so maybe they've changed to become more user friendly. Or maybe there are some new options available.

So here's my question ... what do you use to track your food intake? Do you use Fit Day, MyPlate or Nutrition Data ... or do you use something new?
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Old 02-15-15, 09:19 PM
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Check out MyFitnessPal. In addition to the large user-sourced database you can create your own foods, recipes, and meals for stuff you frequently eat. And copying a meal from one day to another followed by tweaking the amounts is no problem.
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Old 02-15-15, 09:54 PM
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I've used Fitday and it was OK but MyFitnessPal is much better. The food library is much bigger, it supports bar code scanning of food items and you can create recipes and save common meals. It's very easy to use with a smartphone. Which reminds me I need to start using it again to get rid of 5lbs.
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Old 02-15-15, 10:36 PM
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LoseIt.

You can make custom foods, copy whole meals, scan bar codes, and there's a big food database.
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Old 02-15-15, 10:37 PM
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+1 for MFP - but use caution when scanning barcodes or using other user sourced items from the data base - they're occasionally incorrect - sometimes a little - sometimes a lot.
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Old 02-16-15, 07:27 AM
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I prefer LoseIt for iPhone. I've been using it for years and the recent updates have made it even better.
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Old 02-16-15, 07:35 AM
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I'm another one for Loseit. Super easy to copy a previous meal. seems to have a large food database. I use it just to record what I've eaten/exercise. the exercise doen't seem to overestimate the calories burned - well the number it comes up with seems reasonable to me. I have the free version. I think if you upgrade to the premium version that you can do menu planning, but I've not really looked into it.
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Old 02-16-15, 08:53 AM
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Another vote for LoseIt. Very easy to use with an iphone, ipad or desk top computer.
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Old 02-16-15, 04:55 PM
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Several of you have mentioned scanning barcodes ...

I don't have a "smartphone" or any phone at all for that matter. I don't have an ipad or anything like that. I just have a laptop.

Did you buy a barcode scanner to plug into your laptop or desktop? Or are you working with "smartphones" or something?

And ... are these sites you've mentioned American (USA) or are they international. In other words, if I scan my Jalna yoghurt (Pure Yoghurt & Fruit | Products | Public ), will these sites recognise it?


I'm not clear how this works.
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Old 02-16-15, 05:12 PM
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I started out using LoseIt as an app on my iPhone but quickly learned it is fully functional -- maybe more so -- from its website. The site has a huge database of food items, so chances are you can simply search for food items. You can also easily create your own food items if you don't find them searching. I don't know for certain if it's international but I think it is. The web address is Lose It! - Succeed at weight loss with Lose It!
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Old 02-16-15, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by tarwheel
I started out using LoseIt as an app on my iPhone but quickly learned it is fully functional -- maybe more so -- from its website. The site has a huge database of food items, so chances are you can simply search for food items. You can also easily create your own food items if you don't find them searching. I don't know for certain if it's international but I think it is. The web address is Lose It! - Succeed at weight loss with Lose It!
Sadly ...

Lose It! | Availability Outside of US/Canada
Currently Lose It! is only available in the US and Canada. This is largely because of two factors:

1) We don't currently support metric measures.

2) Our food database contains primarily US brands and foods.
Now that was last updated in 2012, so maybe they've made some advancements since then. I'll contact them and ask.

But this is one of the issues I'm running across. I end up having to enter everything from scratch because it's not on the database ... and of course, I use metric because all measurements are in metric here.
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Old 02-17-15, 09:31 AM
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I have been using Fitday on and off for more than a decade. I always liked how you can see your macronutrient split, and other details like micronutrient tracking.

But I never felt like the micronutrient tracking was totally accurate. For one, they don't list all the vitamins and minerals?!
I'm looking for a site where I can dial my micronutrition in. I'm sure all of these sites are good enough for macros.

I had problems with not being able to copy over like everyone else, and I'm wondering if some of the features we are desiring are available in the paid versions.
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Old 02-18-15, 06:20 AM
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I have joined MyFitnessPal.

I've filled in 2 days worth of food and fitness information, and my verdict so far ...

-- it seems to have quite an extensive food database including Australian food ... and it's metric.
-- the exercise options are pretty good ... could be a little more specific, but at least I can add things.
-- there's a bit of choosing and entering now, but I can see that within a week, I should be able to copy and paste or select existing options.

I've also started exploring some of the other features, and have entered a recipe from the Taste.com.au ... and apple & apricot crumble I've been experimenting with lately.
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Old 02-18-15, 11:38 AM
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Yeah with MFP once you've been using it a while your "Recent" and "Frequent" lists will be filled out and it gets easier since you don't have to search the full database every time you log something. Stuff you eat on a regular basis will be quickly retrievable. The meals and custom foods can also be useful.

One thing you may want to look into is the advanced/custom goal settings where you can set not only daily calorie target but the individual macro nutrient goals. Their default macro ratio is too low on the protein for athletes IMHO.

Their exercise database is kind of a joke, the calorie estimates are way high for cardio exercises. If you're going to log workouts I'd suggest using a partner service that can sync more accurate info to MFP. Or if you log manually at least lower the calorie numbers. I train with a Garmin and once my workouts upload to Garmin Connect they automatically sync to MFP (and since I have a power meter I know the calorie estimates are pretty accurate).
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Old 02-18-15, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka
I have joined MyFitnessPal.

I've filled in 2 days worth of food and fitness information, and my verdict so far ...

-- it seems to have quite an extensive food database including Australian food ... and it's metric.
-- the exercise options are pretty good ... could be a little more specific, but at least I can add things.
-- there's a bit of choosing and entering now, but I can see that within a week, I should be able to copy and paste or select existing options.

I've also started exploring some of the other features, and have entered a recipe from the Taste.com.au ... and apple & apricot crumble I've been experimenting with lately.
I use MyNetDiary -- And I've been very pleased with it...
... Sorry, I've been tied up and haven't been following the thread or I would have suggested it earlier. It seems to address all of your issues...

Aide from a nice copy/paste function and a very complete list of foods, another benefit I got from it was being able to summarize and average my daily intake of each nutrient (both macro and micro) over a month or so to see where I have deficiencies (or overages!). I used that for monitoring not only vitamins and minerals (where I got a few surprises) but also my fat intake. I was shooting for a target and it helped me to tailor my food intake to hit that target...

But, perhaps its biggest benefit was education. I got to learn what foods produced what kind of effects on my nutrient intake (including calories). Currently I am not tracking my intake. But I don't really need to so much anymore. I simply stay in the bounds of what learned using MyNetDiary and I feel confident I'm getting what I need...
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Old 02-18-15, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by GeorgeBMac
I use MyNetDiary -- And I've been very pleased with it...
At a glance, it does look quite good too. I've signed up with MyFitnessPal, so I'll stick with that one for now, but I have bookmarked MyNetDiary and LoseIt.
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Old 02-18-15, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by jsk
Their exercise database is kind of a joke, the calorie estimates are way high for cardio exercises.
I've already made some manual adjustments to the calorie estimates.

And I couldn't find Housework on there. Housework isn't an hour of intense intervals or anything, but you're still up and a bit active. So I added it with the lowest "calories burned" amount I could find on other sites.
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Old 02-19-15, 12:05 AM
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OK, the first thing I'm noticing, after entering 3 days worth of information, is this ... my sodium levels are LOW. Well below the daily goal (wherever that came from).

Perhaps this might explain why I crave salt all the time ... and therefore I crave salty foods like potato chips, crackers, cheese, and olives.



Everyone says, "there's already so much salt in our diets ..." but there's not when you eat a whole lot of fruit and veg.


Interesting.
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Old 02-19-15, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
OK, the first thing I'm noticing, after entering 3 days worth of information, is this ... my sodium levels are LOW. Well below the daily goal (wherever that came from).

Perhaps this might explain why I crave salt all the time ... and therefore I crave salty foods like potato chips, crackers, cheese, and olives.



Everyone says, "there's already so much salt in our diets ..." but there's not when you eat a whole lot of fruit and veg.


Interesting.
Yes, that changes the equation...

And, I too found it interesting when I learned what I was actually putting into my body versus what I thought I had been putting into it... One of the surprises for me was that I was taking in a lot fewer calories than what I had thought I was taking in...
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Old 02-19-15, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by GeorgeBMac
Yes, that changes the equation...

And, I too found it interesting when I learned what I was actually putting into my body versus what I thought I had been putting into it... One of the surprises for me was that I was taking in a lot fewer calories than what I had thought I was taking in...
Yes, I'm actually not taking in all that many calories ... right now, I'm making a bit of an effort to keep it under 1500 a day, but even when I'm not making that effort, like on the first day I recorded, I consumed 2300 calories, but my net calories were 1600 because I put in quite a bit of exercise that day.


Last night, I took an electrolyte pill to up my salt intake a bit, and it seemed to make a difference. I went from desperately craving anything salty (as usual) to feeling quite comfortable.

One of the issues I have been having is that I crave salty food ... and then start nibbling salty food. And of course, some salty food is high in calories. So maybe if I salt my veggies a little bit, I won't crave salty crackers.
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Old 02-19-15, 07:25 PM
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I don't use anything. I stopped counting calories and macronutrients. Some days I eat more, some days I eat less, it's not exactly the same everyday. You can't really enjoy your food and your life when you get very dogmatic and strict about counting every milligram of everything that you eat...

Last edited by wolfchild; 02-19-15 at 07:29 PM.
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Old 02-20-15, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
Yes, I'm actually not taking in all that many calories ... right now, I'm making a bit of an effort to keep it under 1500 a day, but even when I'm not making that effort, like on the first day I recorded, I consumed 2300 calories, but my net calories were 1600 because I put in quite a bit of exercise that day.


Last night, I took an electrolyte pill to up my salt intake a bit, and it seemed to make a difference. I went from desperately craving anything salty (as usual) to feeling quite comfortable.

One of the issues I have been having is that I crave salty food ... and then start nibbling salty food. And of course, some salty food is high in calories. So maybe if I salt my veggies a little bit, I won't crave salty crackers.
Sure, why not? If you know that your sodium intake is low, then it will bring it back up to a more normal level. Plus, sodium, despite all the marketing against it is not a poison. It is instead a necessary nutrient. And besides, the only unhealthy thing it has been shown to do is increase blood pressure. But if your BP is not a concern, then sodium should not even do the harm it is advertised to do...

And, it can make food taste better...

Isn't it great being able to tailor your diet based on actual facts that pertain to you rather than generalized guidelines?
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Old 02-20-15, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by jsk
Check out MyFitnessPal. In addition to the large user-sourced database you can create your own foods, recipes, and meals for stuff you frequently eat. And copying a meal from one day to another followed by tweaking the amounts is no problem.
+1 I like this one, have also used livestrong and weightwatchers
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Old 02-20-15, 01:15 PM
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MyFitnessPal for my android pc phone and LoseIt for my iphone. However I gave up on tracking sites as it really didn't "help" me lose weight. It simply reminded me when I was not eating correctly and made me feel guilty. Now I don't count I just eat healthier and exercise more.
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Old 02-20-15, 01:18 PM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild
I don't use anything. I stopped counting calories and macronutrients. Some days I eat more, some days I eat less, it's not exactly the same everyday. You can't really enjoy your food and your life when you get very dogmatic and strict about counting every milligram of everything that you eat...
That's fine if you don't really care about your weight or if are young enough and/or active enough to be able to "eat anything".

I used to be like that. But now that I'm in my mid-40's I need to watch what I eat and exercise almost every day or the pounds start accumulating. I got as high as 198, but since starting LoseIt, I'm back down to ~170 and I've stayed there (give-or-take a pound or five) for about six years. My current goal is to get my weight down to ~160; good for my cycling power-to-weight ratio and I should be free of the last of the "middle-aged guy" belly fat by then!

I enjoy my food and my life just fine, even though I use LoseIt to track my calories. I eat pretty much anything I want, just in moderation. I've learned a LOT about portion sizes since starting LoseIt, too....

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