Which ways do you count calories(for those that do)? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 04-08-2006, 09:37 AM
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I've decided to start dieting(a healthy amount) and exercising in order to get back in shape and lose the winter weight I gained. However, I feel like there's different ways one can go about counting calories, so I'm wondering what works best for other people. You could write down everything you eat throughout the day and then add it up at the end, or maybe do you write down the calorie contents of things as you're doing it so you keep a running tally? Do you just keep numbers in your head and don't use paper? Do you use something like fitday or do you keep a list of calorie contents of foods you eat? Do you measure out your food with actual measuring cups, or do you just eye it and estimate? And what about meals that you make that there isn't a calorie content for, for example a lot of times I'll make flavored rice with beans and mixed veggies all mixed together. How am I supposed to know the calorie content of that??
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#2 Old 04-08-2006, 09:46 AM
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Well I have tried many methods over the years. The one that worked best for me was to keep a runny tally through the day on paper or in my pda. If I wait to end of the day I would be way over because I like to eat too much.I used a fantastic program that logged food with calories right on my pda for years. It helped me maintain but not lose. I think that was because of other issues in my life at the time though.
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#3 Old 04-08-2006, 09:48 AM
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As far as the mixed meals the part you need to count is the beans and rice. As long as you are mixing only non startchy vegetables in than you don't really need to count those. Or make a quick estimate. But again really look at the beans and rice.



Oh and I use actual measuring cups! I can NOT eye a proper portion.



One more Oh: Part of supervised plan I am includes an online food journal which I have to fill out or I hear about it. That helps me get a quick view of what I am eating.
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#4 Old 04-08-2006, 10:00 AM
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I count on occassion to make sure I am on track. I use fitday, and use estimates.
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#5 Old 04-08-2006, 10:20 AM
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I use a combination of www.fitday.com and www.nutritiondata.com. Fitday has the daily food/activity/weight log function, but NutritionData has a very useful recipe builder tool for creating custom foods, so together they make a great system. I log everything at the end of the day when I get home. If I'm following a recipe when I make something, then obviously I know how much of each ingredient I put in and I just plug in those amounts. Otherwise, I guesstimate unless it's something I make a lot. For example, I'm in the habit of making half an almond butter and jelly sandwich for my breakast during the week. I measured the almond butter and jelly a couple of times to make sure I was really using a tablespoon of each, made a mental note of what that looks like on the bread, and now I just eyeball it. Every once in a while I measure it again to make sure I'm still doing it right.
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#6 Old 04-08-2006, 12:41 PM
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I also use fitday. I usually put everything in when I get home for the day, and throughout the day I keep a running tally in my head. What I do though, is I tend to overestimate the amount of calories in food, because I'd rather air on the side of caution and then just eat more later if I'm too low.



I did actually measure portions of things at first and now I just eyeball it, but I'll still measure occasionally like Tess to make sure I'm doing it right!



Also, I have lost about 5 pounds since I started with fitday!

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#7 Old 04-08-2006, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesseract View Post

I use a combination of www.fitday.com and www.nutritiondata.com. Fitday has the daily food/activity/weight log function, but NutritionData has a very useful recipe builder tool for creating custom foods, so together they make a great system. I log everything at the end of the day when I get home. If I'm following a recipe when I make something, then obviously I know how much of each ingredient I put in and I just plug in those amounts. Otherwise, I guesstimate unless it's something I make a lot. For example, I'm in the habit of making half an almond butter and jelly sandwich for my breakast during the week. I measured the almond butter and jelly a couple of times to make sure I was really using a tablespoon of each, made a mental note of what that looks like on the bread, and now I just eyeball it. Every once in a while I measure it again to make sure I'm still doing it right.

Yeah that's what I did today, I measured how much peanut butter and jelly I'd normally use in a pbj sandwich, so that I'll just always know. I looked at the NutritionData page for a minute and it looks a bit confusing, maybe just cause I didn't actually look around it much.



Also one reason that I'm asking about this stuff is I feel like people would think I'm weird if I carry around a piece of paper that I write my food on, yet I have a bad memory so I think if I tried to just remember everything, I'd probably forget(especially if I ate something that had the calories in the back, I'd probably forget what it said by the end of the day!). I may just try to get on fitday a few times a day to update.



arlina1- but I do mix in a good amount of veggies, so I want to count them too, also for the fact that they would add to the vitamin part of fitday (I like to make sure I'm getting all my vitamins!). Another confusing example is when I make a stew/soup, I'll just throw a bunch of stuff all together making a thick soup. I have no idea what the calories of that would be.
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#8 Old 04-08-2006, 05:05 PM
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On days that I'm over my target weight and have to restrict calories, I just do a sum on a notepad. It's very quick, easy, and painless after you learn the caloric content of foods. The key is to stop eating when you hit your calorie limit for the day - something I find pretty easy to do. I don't count calories on days that I'm under my target weight or I'm eating out - it's much more difficult to get good estimates with restaurant food due to the ease with which cooks can bump up the calories by adding oils, etc.
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#9 Old 04-08-2006, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluegrrrl79 View Post

Also one reason that I'm asking about this stuff is I feel like people would think I'm weird if I carry around a piece of paper that I write my food on, yet I have a bad memory so I think if I tried to just remember everything, I'd probably forget(especially if I ate something that had the calories in the back, I'd probably forget what it said by the end of the day!). I may just try to get on fitday a few times a day to update.

When I have something packaged during the day, I stick the empty package in my bag to take home. Since I already do this with all my drink bottles to recycle them, nobody bats an eye-- they already think I'm a weirdo because I refuse to throw my bottles away!

Quote:
Another confusing example is when I make a stew/soup, I'll just throw a bunch of stuff all together making a thick soup. I have no idea what the calories of that would be.

That's where NutritionData comes in very handy. You can create a custom recipe and it will tell you all the calories and nutritional info for the whole recipe automatically. Here's how you do it: on the front page, just go up to the top right hand corner and search for the first ingredient in your stew. Go to that ingredient, then click Add to Pantry. Keep doing that until you have all the ingredients in your Pantry. Click on the Pantry tab to view the list, adjust the amounts to match the recipe, then click Analyze Recipe. Voila! All the nutrition facts for your homemade stew will be there, ready to add into Fitday as a custom food.



PS: I logged my calories for the day after dinner, and learned I have room for ice cream!
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