Everyone knows someone who's lost 20+ pounds logging food in an app. They might’ve used My Fitness Pal, My Plate, My Diet Coach… the list of possibilities is endless!
The reality is, food tracking apps are great for a lot of people because:
- The app automatically tracks macronutrients (protein, fat, and carbs), so you can set macro goals and not just focus on calorie restriction
- Apps have a gigantic food database, so they can save you boatloads of time
What if logging food is not your thing? For whatever reason. It doesn’t matter why. What matters is you’re not going to use one. So what now?
FIRST THINGS FIRST:
Identify the one area where you do the most damage.
1. If MINDLESS EATING in the evening is where you do the most damage, SET A CUT-OFF TIME. For example, no food after 7pm. Brush your teeth immediately after eating dinner, don’t wait until bedtime. (This is where I struggle. I turn on Netflix and just graaaaaaaazzzze for an hour or two).
2. Do you EAT OUT too much? If so, is it possible to reduce that number? Hint: unless you travel a lot or frequently have business lunches/dinners, the answer is yes. Start cooking/preparing food at home. If that’s just not possible, here are some tips for eating out.
- Get your dressing/condiments on the side
- Opt for veggies instead of starches
- Choose a lean protein
- Skip the bread and the chips
- Dessert? If you have to have some, share and only enjoy a couple of bites.
- And last but not least, drink a glass of water before your meal arrives.
3. If you struggle with PORTION CONTROL, get a food scale. Make sure you know what a serving of pasta actually looks like. Don’t want to bother with that? Get all of your meals from Snap Kitchen for a week. (That can be expensive but it might be the easiest way to learn what an actual serving size looks like.)
Get zip locks baggies and portion out snacks - things like nuts, for instance.
The great thing about this approach is that you don’t have to do it forever. You just have to do it long enough that you learn to visually identify what a serving size actually looks like. (It’s usually a lot less than we think!).
Once you’ve identified the “low-hanging fruit,” focus on improving that one thing. You don’t have to use a food app to lose weight. You can reach your weight loss goals without ever reaching for your phone, but you’ve got to make some changes!