Keeping track, the secret to staying on track.

In 2008, Kaiser Permanente’s Center for Research released a study that showed dieters who kept a food journal lost double the amount of weight as those who did not. This is a great starting point for anyone who is ready to turn their eating habits around.

Loosing weight can be broken down in to the most basic system: calories in, calories out.  When you burn more calories than you are taking in it leads to weight loss, period.  One pound of weight is equal to about 3,500 calories. So think, if you cut out 500 calories a day, technically you could loose 1 pound a week.

So many of us eat without really understanding how many calories we are putting in our bodies.  We may think we’ve made a wise decision by opting for a salad, but then we pour ranch dressing all over it, sprinkle it with cheese, then have a warm roll on the side with butter.  (Mmmm… bread and butter, my weakness!) If you calculated the calories in that meal, you might find yourself wishing you had a cheeseburger instead. Once you start keeping track of the calories you are ingesting, you might be surprised at what you find and start to cut back on certain foods.

Faced with the somewhat daunting and tedious task of researching the calorie content of everything you eat and writing it down, most people are reluctant to adopting this practice.

Enter Lose it!  The little app with big abilities.

Lose it was my secret weapon against those last 10 pounds I wanted to lose. I would just look up whatever I ate from the thousands of items in their database and added it to either my breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack list for the day.  The program does all the calorie and nutrition calculations for you, it’s that simple.  What I like the most is that it keeps a running list of the foods you have already eaten. So for someone like me who pretty much eats the same breakfast everyday, I just head to that list and pick my foods from there, no searching involved.  For even more convenience, a barcode scanner feature was recently added. Scan the barcode on the product you are eating and it instantly finds it in the database, just choose your serving size and add it to your food list.  Again, no searching involved. You can also create foods that may not be in the database.

Although your diet accounts for about 80% of your weight loss success, exercising is also a crucial part of that process.  Lose it also has a database of exercises that you can choose from (or again, create your own) so that you can keep track of calories burned too.

To stay motivated there is a line graph that keeps track of your progress towards your goal weight. Additionally, you can generate progress reports, set up reminders and link up with your friends to share your progress.

Lose It is available for iPhone, iPod, Android, and even on the web.  The best thing about having it in your phone is that you have your food journal with you everywhere you go, without having to carry around one more thing. You can find out more about Lose It here.

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