How Can I Track Home-Made Meals? A: Food Scales & Groupings
Members Were Sparked
Estimating calories in home-cooked meals can put you wildly off the mark. If you frequently make a dish, take the time to enter each ingredient and its weight as a Grouping.
Record ingredients' weight as you make it. Write it down on paper, you don't have to enter it while you're cooking! Put the total weight of the dish in the title as a reminder. Weigh your serving then divide that amount by the total recipe weight. Enter that percentage as the quantity of the Grouping when you track.
Get 3 scales: A large 7” x 7” scale, a medium one that can weigh up to 11 pounds, and a small scale precise to tenths of a gram.
Often I’ll write the weight of the container in permanent ink on the bottom of a container, in case I forget to tare the scale before adding the food. Weigh cool.
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It’s really easy to keep track of your meals when you do it in food groupings. I try to make 4-5 menus for each meal and then rotate them through out the month,. When they get old I add new ones but by having that menu placed in the food grouping it is just one click and everything that I ate for that meal is listed.
Use reusable, 3 compartment lunch containers to pre-make a weeks worth of lunches. First develop your lunch menus and shop for ingredients. Then, weigh, measure and calculate for the entire meal, filling compartments as you go. When finished, put the name and calorie count on a blank address label on the top. Write down the contents so you can repeat these meals and save in a binder. I try to keep my calorie count between 350 and 400 for this meal, focusing on high protein and lots of fiber.
I like to create a food grouping to make tracking easier, then print the grouping for reference. Creating fresh, healthy meals that resemble expensive store bought ones saves money and calories! And tracking couldn't be easier. Simply select the grouping and Bam! Tracking entered for entire lunch!
Setting up shop with the food journal takes time, but once you've made lists of "favorites" and "food groupings", it can usually be done in less than 10 minutes a day. Once selected, the groupings can easily altered by adding or subtracting a food to that particular meal.
Nutritional tracking is vital, at least until one's healthy eating habits are well-ingrained. It's also a good way to see changes that need to be made.
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