I hate calorie counting.
I always start out well with the best intentions but the tedious process of logging everything I eat eventually wears me down. In about 3 days time. Then I abandon the counting, feel like a failure, and move on. It’s one of my most annoying problems regarding food tracking.
Luckily I think I’ve finally discovered the “secrets” of calorie counting. They are:
- Measure everything.
- Eat the same meals often to make it easier to count.
- Use a tool that makes the process easy.
The first two can be easy and I’ll talk about them another day. Today I want to focus on that last piece: a calorie counting tool that makes the process easier.
I’ve used several and have finally settled on My Fitness Pal as my favorite.
Why I’m Loving My Fitness Pal
There are a few reasons why I’m loving My Fitness Pal…
Huge Database of Foods
For a while I used other services because most lacked the brands I used in New Zealand. When I finally looked around at MFP I learned that they had almost all those brands and more. The database of foods is huge.
Users can add foods as well and then also confirm that other entries have the correct nutritional information. I like this feature because when I’m adding foods I can feel sure the information is correct based on confirmations from other users.
I also love the meal feature. This is great if you eat some meals over and over. I’ve been eating the same egg white english muffin every morning lately so I entered it as a meal on My Fitness Pal. Now instead of entering each of the four elements I just go to the My Meals tab and click the muffin meal.
Then it enters everything for me automatically!
From there you can adjust if you made it differently, but the meal feature saves a lot of time and effort if you eat the same meal repeatedly.
One thing I love about My Fitness Pal is that is doesn’t just track calories and macros. It also tracks sugar and sodium. Those are both two things I try to watch as I can easily go overboard so it’s nice to have. For example today’s tracking so far lets me know I’m doing great regarding sugar but could try to watch the sodium for dinner so I don’t go over the recommended limit.
It’s really convenient to have that information easily available.
Other Awesome Benefits of My Fitness Pal
- Fitness tracking
- Community with active message boards
- Ability to use with mobile devices
- Recipe calculators
- Weight loss badges
They really do have a lot of neat stuff built into their platform. It’s a bit surprising it’s still free with all they include but it appears to be supported by the advertising on the site.
Problems With My Fitness Pal
I don’t have any problems with this service actually. It’s the first I’ve used that doesn’t have a much that bothers me. Every other service from Daily Burn to SparkPeople bugged me for one reason or another. I’ve been using MFP for a while and I still enjoy it! The only thing that even slightly bothers me is the “News Feed” which basically just tells me whether other people have been updating or not. I could do without that but it’s not a problem as I just look past it.
One thing I don’t do is ever complete my entry for the day (click the green button). For some reason once I am at the end of my day I just leave it. So I used MFP as a counter just for myself for the day and don’t utilize some of the other features like that one or the fitness tracking. Those all look nice but I just don’t personally have a use for them.
If you can’t tell, I highly recommend My Fitness Pal. It’s great for calorie counting and if you want the added features and community too. Check it out!