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A Dieters Best friend!
MyFitnessPal (iPhone Application)
Member Name: nilo0901
MyFitnessPal (iPhone Application)
Advantages: Easy to use, simple, intuitive, great database
Disadvantages: You find out what is actually in your favourite dish!
This free app is a weight losers dream. I have recently embarked on a light diet and have found this tool invaluable for helping me keep track of what I eat and how many calories it contains.
It's a very easy app to use and navigation is largely intuitive. The main function is to be able to keep a diary of what you eat and keep track of calories.
As a starting point, it asks you various questions about yourself (age, height, etc...), your lifestyle (exercise , sedentary work, etc...) and what you hope to achieve in terms of weight loss ad over what period of time.
It then works out what your daily calorie intake should be to reach that goal based on the info provided. Once you've received this horrifying info, the 'fun' really begins as the realisation you'll be eating like a rabbit over the course of the next few months dawns.
The app has an easily set out diary split into 4 sections - breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. There is an exhaustive library of different foods in an easily manageable search engine. You simply type in what you've eaten and it finds it, or the nearest thing and how many calories it contains. The range includes most popular shop bought items and often includes the exact calorie count for that brand (e.g Saunsbury's steak pie). It also has estimates for home made items (e.g sausage and mash) so pretty much everything is covered. Rather niftily, there is also the option to scan the barcode of your food to get the exact calorie count. This also works excellently and has a wealth of products again in the database. Simply hold the barcode within the box shown on your camera screen and it will automatically read it.
Once you have selected your item, you simply click 'add' in the top left hand corner and it automatically adds it to your day. It calculates each item added and tells you your remaining calorie count for the day.
...and that's just eating. You can also include any excercise you've done that day as well. The interface is very similar to the eating and a simple matter of searching what you've done and adding it. This is then set against your food intake automatically and recalculates your calorie allowance again. You can select the exercise done by either cardiovascular (such as running or walking) or strength (gym work).
Once added to the diary you can get a daily or weekly overview of your intake and excersize which can be a useful snapshot at progress. This also includes a detailed look at the calorie breakdown - how much I what you eat is fat, protein or carbohydrate.
These are the basic functions. There are also numerous diagnostic screens that can show you charts of your progress, etc... That range from quite useful to only any use to the fitness freak. I don't really tend to use them too much but I'm sure for some they can offer hours of entertainment.
I find the progress chart quite handy. Here you can record your weight at various intervals to keep track of what you are actually losing per week and hence assessing whether the diet is actually doing any good. If you are into communal dieting then there is also an option add friends. I've not used this function as most of my friends are healthy and fit, but I'm sure the competitive element would be fun.
The interface really couldn't be more straightforward to use and user friendly. There are instructions but really no need to use them such is the intuitive and self explanatory nature of this app. You really can install and start right away.
I can't think of anything it doesn't cover that you might need. Given it's free as well I think it's an excellent fitness device for anyone trying lose weight, or just interested in knowing what they eat.
Summary: An excellent free device for dieters
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