Whether you are trying to maintain a healthy weight, maintaining a balanced gut, or simply make healthier choices about what you put on your plate, keeping a daily food journal is a great way to not only keep track of the foods you eat, but also how your eating habits (and cravings) shift throughout the day. Here are four great reasons to start a food journal today:
- It’s Everywhere. And new research tells us sugar is becoming even more dangerous to our health than alcohol, tobacco use, and a lack of exercise combined. Keeping a food journal and tracking your daily sugar intake will help you pay close attention to the sources of hidden sugar in your diet and how to eliminate—or at least greatly reduce—added sugars for a healthier gut and body.
- Recognize Your Weak Spots. We all have the occasional mid-afternoon sugar craving, but are there times when you find yourself making less-than-healthy choices? Think about the last time you skipped breakfast, grabbed a packet of crackers instead of getting a healthy lunch, or binged on carbs because of a particularly stressful day? A food journal will help you identify unhealthy habits and plan ahead for moments of weakness.
- Appreciate Portion Control. Sometimes it takes the simple act of writing down everything we eat and drink to get a feel for what “portion control” really means. In our super-sized world, we often forget that true serving sizes are actually much smaller than we think. For example, a single serving of fruit or veggies is about the size of your fist. Meat, fish, and poultry? About the size of a deck of cards. And snack foods such as nuts should be kept to just a handful. Pay attention to portion sizes and how your body feels afterward—you are likely eating more than you need to feel satisfied.
- Start the New Year Off Right. Keeping a food journal is a great way to start off 2016 on a healthy note, especially when many people are focused on making everyday diet and lifestyle changes to support a healthy weight and body. The choices you make will help shape your eating habits this month and throughout the new year.