What are the Benefits of Maintaining a Food Journal?
Let’s start with a simple question – what did you eat and drink the whole day yesterday? You probably won’t remember everything. Recalling each and every meal, snack, and drink you have on a daily basis is tough, yet normal. But, why should you recall the same? Well, comprehensively, it can help improve your overall health. From helping you lose those extra pounds to refining your eating patterns, being conscious about what you eat can benefit you in different ways, and the best way to achieve this is by maintaining a food journal.
Here is how tracking your food intake with a food diary can benefit you:
Helps Lose Weight
Mindless eating is something most individuals do. From the extra muffin you have at the office to the many samples you got to taste at your local supermarket, there are a lot of foods that go unaccountable for in your daily eating routine, and it’s this mindless eating that prevents you from losing weight. When you maintain a food journal or food diary, you get to reflect on your eating habits, make more conscious food choices, and say no to any extra calories that could hinder your progress in your weight loss journey.
Better Nutrition Intake
Of course, it may not necessarily be about weight loss for everyone. In fact, tracking your food intake with a food journal can do much more than just being a calorie counter. Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of maintaining a food diary is being aware of your nutrition intake. For instance, we all know drinking at least a few litres of water (based on your weight) each day is essential; but how many of us actually do? This applies to the different food groups, such as proteins, vitamins, and carbohydrates as well. With a food journal, you get to know the different food types you should be consuming more in order to balance and better your nutrition intake.
What Triggers You to Eat
Do you know that you don’t always eat due to hunger? This is one of the first things you will realize when you start maintaining a food journal. The fact is that, factors such as boredom, stress, and other external factors (like going to a party or bar) is what triggers a lot of your unhealthy or unnecessary eating. Having a food diary not only acts as an efficient calorie counter, but also helps you become aware of such triggers so you can clean up your diet.
Effect of Foods
Certain types of foods will have certain effects on your body, and having a separate column in your food diary where you can note down the same can be really helpful. The foods you eat can affect not just your digestive health, but also your overall mood and energy. For instance, a simple salad with a lean protein topping as your lunch could make you feel refreshed and more motivated during the rest of the day, rather than a burger with a side of fries. Knowing things like these will help you start practicing better eating habits.
Losing weight and being healthy is the need of the hour, and many individuals do not really know where to start. Maintaining a food journal can actually be an effective first step to this journey of yours.