Saturday, July 2, 2011

Great app for tracking your weight loss

Today I want to talk about tracking your success with weight loss.  There has been so many times that I have been approached, "oh, I see you're losing weight". Have you found yourself wondering, what in the world are they talking about.  I've gone up a pants size, they must be blind.  Well, for me, I don't have to wonder anymore.

There are so many benefits to be had when you are tracking your weight loss history.  It is much more involved than just saying, "I've lost two pounds today" and then mark it on the calendar.  For those who are serious about losing weight, there are many areas you need to track other than the pounds. Figure in what did you eat, what was the nutritional values associated with that meal.  Was that meal rich in protein or fat? Then there is the calorie count.  How many calories were consumed versus how many was burned for that day. To those who are just beginning their weight loss journey, this can be an extreme task.  This is where I was when I first began my weight loss regime.

Luckily for me, I have just recently purchased a new cell phone. I was being cursed all over because my phone would not hold a charge; therefore, I missed a lot of phone calls.  So I upgraded to an android phone.  I won’t mention what model I got because I absolutely hate it so far, yet I love all the new things I can do with the phone.  It has its goods and it's bad.  Anyway, being new to the Android world, I began downloading all these applications.  I came across a few apps geared towards tracking weight loss, however I have yet to find one as good as Calorie Counter.

This app saves everything you can think of when it comes down to tracking your weight.  This app is very easy to use and at first glance seems very basic.  However, in the background this app is analyzing every entry you put into it.  There are several parts to this app so I will review each section one by one.
*      Food Diary
o   Saves meals and nutritional values by breakfast, lunch, dinner or snacks.
o   Easy to adjust to the portion amount eaten by servings, ounces, cups, etc.
o   Saves meals by date to be analyze by the embedded weight loss tracker
o   Recalculates your Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) as you make entries.
o   Input foods eaten by search
§  Restaurants, popular brands or Supermarket brands
§  Search for saved food items or enter one yourself
§  Save a picture of what you ate
o   Use the barcode scanner to scan in what you eat.
This is the best part of the application if you ask me.  There is no way to fully track your calories if you don’t know how many calories are in what you are eating.  It can be hard to find the nutritional values for most restaurants.  This app does all of this for you.  There can be long lists of foods listed, but I have not found this to be an issue really.  If you use the barcode scanner especially on store bought food, it is usually fairly easy to input hard to find foods.
*      Exercise Diary
o   Saves defaulted activities by what day they are performed
o   Tracks a full 24 hour day worth of activity
o   Easy to customize activities and duration
o   Don’t see your activity listed, easily add one to the list
This exercise diary is the bomb.  Most people do not account for the calories that you burn just sitting, sleeping or driving. Well this application has all of that covered.  Work at a desk all day, well that is listed as well.  No need to account for the amount of calories burned, this app will do it for you.
*      Weight Tracker
o   Opens to a grid chart that tracks your progress since the first entry
o   Write a journal for the day and attach it to your weigh in
o   At a glance look at whether you are gaining or losing weight.
The weight track is simple and to the point and easy to use. Only thing I don’t like about it is there seems to be no way to change an entry in case of a mistake in keying.  However, I can see how this will ensure that you are not lying to yourself about how much you weigh.  So still a great feature.
*      Diet Calendar (saved the best for last)
o   Calculates every entry, food, exercise and weight
o   Analyzes the entries to project if you are on target or not
This I believe is the meat of this app.  It takes your entries and calculates them all together showing where you went wrong. Maybe you didn’t burn enough calories, or just ate too many.  You can tell this by comparing your net to your RDI.  Was your RDI on target, over the targeted goal or too far under the target.
The bonus to this app is that you can backup your entries to your SD card, but that’s not all.  You can link your app to an online account with Facebook, Twitter or is a free website created by the makers of Calorie Counter.  There you can link up with others and motivate each other to reach your weight loss goals.  There are tons of forum threads for support, diet challenges, or various diets in general. Currently this app is only available for Android and Blackberry systems.

1 comment:

  1. I'm going to add this app. Thanks Jeanea! This is a really great blog!