For this assignment, I’m asking you to track your food/caloric intake for a period of 07 consecutive days. To do so, you will use MyFitnessPal (http://myfitnesspal.com). There is no need to change or modify your food choices for this exercise – just log the normal things you eat. Either set up an account using your email or Facebook, or log into MyFitnessPal if you have previously created an account. Using MyFitnessPal provides the following:
access to a robust data set containing many foods, both “made from scratch” and ready-made, including many food items available at common food outlets and restaurants
the ability to access information for many foods by scanning the UPC located on the label
the ability to track both caloric intake and exercise by selecting from many existing exercise types in a variety of intensities
integration with a number of other apps such as MapMyRide, MapMyWalk, etc.
a limited set of analysis tools that can be used to look at trends and summaries of caloric and nutrient intake
the ability to set daily goals for caloric intake, exercise, weight loss, etc.
Once you’ve set up your account, you can log your food from your phone or from a computer. When I have intensively used MyFitnessPal, I input food using the smartphone app from the Google Play store. While you may not have access to one, I have a kitchen scale that I use to weigh food ingredients.
Once you’ve created an account and are logged in (on your phone), go to the “Diary” and you can enter food and/or exercise by clicking in the appropriate places. You can enter under any of three meals or under a category called snacks. The use of the program (or app) is relatively intuitive and — in addition to food — you can track both cardiovascular and strength activities, though caloric information is only available for cardiovascular (i.e., aerobic) exercise.
Once you’ve tracked your calories for the 07-day period, you will then analyze your MyFitnessPal data to generate some reports that become part of your submission for JE 03. More detailed instructions for your analyses are contained in PDFs available under the “files > readings” tab entitled “34 myfitnesspal instructions” and “35 excel instructions”. The wise student will review the instructions before getting very far into the 07-day data collection period since the instructions identify which nutrients/data you are to track. You will have to provide not only your narrative but also a spreadsheet (in .xls or .xlsx format only) for the 07-day period. The instructions tell you how to do this.