Weight Loss Journal and Food Log

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use a food diary print out to lose weight

Dieters who are serious about losing weight usually keep a weight loss journal. Are you ready to eat healthy and slim down? Then use this printable food log to record your food intake, count calories and keep track of other important information to lose weight successfully.

Food Log Benefits: Why Keep a Weight Loss Journal?

There are a few different ways to keep track of the food you eat each day. Some smart dieters use smartphone apps or websites to track their calories and daily exercise. The most popular apps include Lose It, My Fitness Pal, and Fitbit. Each food log works well and includes a large inventory of popular foods so it is easy to track your intake.

Food log apps work well if you prefer tech-savvy methods of recording your meals. But a printable, paper food journal provides unique benefits.

When you use a smartphone app or website to log your calories, you don’t see your actual food log unless you choose to. Your smartphone may be turned off and tucked away in your purse or briefcase. And it’s not likely that your computer screen will keep a food diary website on display.

But a food log printout can be posted in your kitchen where it is easy to see. That way it’s hard to forget to log your food at mealtime or when you grab a snack. When you see your daily calorie intake, the food diary might also nudge you to make lower calorie choices. And lastly, your food journal printout can serve as a reminder of the good food choices you’ve made throughout the day, week or month. 

Printable Food Journal for Weight Loss

If you have decided to keep a hard copy weight loss journal, follow these steps for success.

Step One: Click here to view and print your food journal.

Step Two: Record important nutrients for each food that you eat. You won’t always be able to fill in each column, but try to gather as much information as possible for the foods that you eat. Calories matter most when it comes to weight loss, but getting enough of these essential nutrients will make it easier for you to slim down.

  • Protein. Foods like lean meats, beans, and dairy products provide protein. Protein helps you to build muscle and also helps you to feel full after meals.
  • Carbohydrate. Carbs provide energy so that you can stay active throughout the day. Good carbs can also provide important vitamins, minerals or fiber to build a strong and healthy body. 
  • Fat Healthy fats, like those in nuts, fish or plant-based oils are important for healthy cell function in your body
  • Fiber When you eat foods that are high in fiber, you stay satisfied and feeling full for a longer period of time

Step Three: Add important lifestyle information. Record your daily exercise activities, your daily steps, and your sleep data. Research shows that people who rest well at night and stay active during the day are more likely to lose weight and keep the pounds off. You should also record daily accomplishments – even if they are small. Giving yourself credit for all of the smart choices you make during the day will help keep you motivated throughout your weight loss journey.

Step Four: Analyze your weekly calorie deficit. If you eat the right number of calories each day, you should end the week with a calorie deficit. Use this printable form to track your progress from week to week. If you aren’t losing enough weight each week, change your energy balance to make weight loss happen faster.

Weight Loss Journal Tips

Keeping an organized weight loss journal will help make your slimming process more effective. But your food journal won’t always be perfect. Keep these tips in mind.

  • Enter food data at mealtime. To get the most accurate information, try to enter nutrient information right away when you eat. It’s hard to remember portion sizes and food data later in the day.
  • Enter only what you eat. You don’t have to eat each meal or snack listed on the food journal. For example, if you don’t eat dessert, then don’t fill in that row. Eating more often doesn’t necessarily help you lose weight.
  • Plan meals in advance. If you schedule meals ahead of time, you’ll be prepared with calorie information. You can even enter the information in advance. Smart dieters prepare a week’s worth of meals in an hour or two to make dieting more simple.
  • Be patient. Remember that dieting is not an exact science. Sometimes it takes longer than expected to lose the weight you want to lose. Give yourself time and stick to the plan.

More Weight Loss Journal Options

If you prefer not to create your own weight loss journal, you can also buy one at your local stationery store. Brands like Fitlosophy make several styles of journals that can help you stay on track with your diet and exercise program. Or check out Be Healthy Every Day, a more comprehensive planner that includes recipes and daily tips.

A Word From Tips For Healthy Living

For best results, use your weight loss journal on a regular basis. Keep each day’s food log and each week’s weight loss journal to evaluate along the way. Then make changes and adjustments to your caloric intake or your daily calorie expenditure to reach your goal weight.

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