Can’t figure out what’s keeping you from reaching your weight loss goals? You may need a pen and paper to figure it out. According to a new study from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, women who consistently keep food journals lose about 6 pounds more than those who do not.
“For individuals who are trying to lose weight, the number one piece of advice based on these study results would be to keep a food journal to help meet daily calorie goals. It is difficult to make changes to your diet when you are not paying close attention to what you are eating,” stated Dr. Anne McTiernan, director of the Hutchinson Center’s Prevention Center.
Participants in the study were given a notebook to record what they ate, but your smartphone, I-pad, or computer will work just as well. If you have been struggling to lose unhealthy weight, look for weight loss programs that provide online tools such as a food diary to help make journaling simple and easy.
Tips for Effective Food Journaling
- Be honest: record everything you eat
- Be accurate: measure portions, read labels
- Be complete: include details such as how food was prepared and toppings or condiments
- Be consistent: always carry your food diary with you or use a diet-tracking application on your smartphone