Photo Credit by Madison Inouye
Photo Credit by Madison Inouye
1. What is a food journal?
We know journals to be notebooks in which we pen down our thoughts and feelings. So many of us love to keep a journal to document our day and to pause and reflect. It gives us space to think about our lives and what we can do to be better people.
A food journal is a similar concept to keeping a typical journal, except that it is used exclusively to document the types of food that you eat in a day. For example, you would write down what you eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as any snacks in between. You would then be able to compare your calorie intake on any given day and compare it to other days of the week.
The interesting thing about food intake is that we are so often absent-minded about the things we eat. How many of us have a munch on snacks mindlessly? Sometimes we reach for food for no other reason than that we feel ‘peckish.’ This is especially true if we have junk food lying around us.
A food journal, therefore, allows you to record down exactly what you eat in a day. Oftentimes, our impression of what we consume in a day does not correspond with reality. We might think that we regularly eat a balanced diet, with plenty of fruits and vegetables. The truth is laid bare when we actually keep a food journal. When we meticulously record down what we eat – main courses, snacks, and junk food – we can then see what we truly consume in a day. And the truth might come as a surprise.
A food journal, therefore, is like a diary purely for your food intake. It helps you keep a close eye on what you feed yourself on any given day.
2. What are the benefits of a food journal?
As we have seen in the previous section, a food journal works by allowing us to keep close track of what we eat every day. It allows us to easily dispel any myths we might hold about how ‘healthily’ we actually eat. Therefore, food diaries, when recorded accurately, tell the blunt truth about our actual diet routines – not just what we think of them in our heads.
How can this be beneficial? Well, if you’re trying to live a healthy lifestyle, you must back it up with a healthy diet. It is simply no use to go to the gym every day only to return home and snack excessively on junk food. Sugar intake, for example, has a huge impact on many aspects of our health. Dr. Frank Hu, professor of nutrition at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, says, “The effects of added sugar intake — higher blood pressure, inflammation, weight gain, diabetes, and fatty liver disease — are all linked to an increased risk for heart attack and stroke.”
In other words, you are what you eat. Keeping a food journal will allow you to track closely the amount of sugar, fat, and carbohydrates in your daily diet. When you confront the truth about your dieting habits, you can then take decisive action to change them.
Keeping a food journal isn’t just useful for keeping track of what you eat, but it also allows you to keep track of what you don’t eat. Some of us don’t have the problem of eating too much. Instead, for some of us, the problem is the very opposite – we don’t eat enough. Or it may be that we don’t eat enough of the foods that we know we should be eating more of, such as foods that are high in fiber and vitamins. 15 Best Food Journals
For some of us with diseases like diabetes, it is highly important that we eat just the right amounts – not too much, and not too little. However, all of us will benefit from being a little more aware of what we put into our bodies every day.
3. Can a food journal help you to lose weight?
Photo Credit by Natasha Spencer
Photo Credit by Natasha Spencer
Many of us could do with a little weight loss. When we think of losing weight, many of us think of special diet plans that help us to shed pounds quickly. There seems to be a new diet plan every week if you look at social media. Celebrities and brands love to tell us that we can lose weight drastically – if only we would pay for their special diet programs.
The other lifestyle change that we hear so much about is getting enough exercise. The CDC tells us that “more physical activity increases the number of calories your body uses for energy or ‘burns off.’ The burning of calories through physical activity, combined with reducing the number of calories you eat, creates a ‘calorie deficit’ that results in weight loss.”
In the rush to get more exercise, some of us sign up for fitness programs and gym memberships that we end up rarely using. The keyword here is discipline. If you can get enough exercise to create a ‘calorie deficit’, you will start to lose weight.
But between hopping onto the next diet bandwagon or signing up for a new gym membership, is there another aspect to weight loss that we might be missing here? Yes, and it is deceptively simple. To succeed in losing weight, we simply need to focus more attention on a simple area of our lives: how much food we eat, and the kinds of food we eat.
Lost in all the marketing blitz by fitness companies vying for our attention is the simple habit of keeping track of our calories. This is why a food diary is such an excellent tool to help you to lose weight. It brings everything back down to basics: are you eating the right foods? Are you overeating on things that you shouldn’t? Are you consuming more than your recommended number of calories in a day?
Food journals create a deep awareness of what we feed our bodies, and may provoke us to change. That alone makes it an indispensable tool in losing weight.
15 Best Food Journals
If you’re ready to kickstart your fitness journey, here are 15 great food journals that you can choose from. 15 Best Food Journals
15. Track Your Nutrition By NewMe Fitness
15 Best Food Journals
Photo Credit by NewMe Fitness
NewMe Fitness is a “small, exceptional company that creates exceptional, superior fitness products that are easy to use and are designed to get serious results.” They offer products that are all customized in some way. It features illustrations or specialized fitness graphics. The result is products that look fresh and inspirational.
This fitness journal averages 4.6 stars on Amazon and has been praised by thousands of customers. The NewMe fitness journal aims to do four things: help you lose weight faster, track your food and nutrition intake (for more than 4 months), spot bad eating habits, and record your body measurements. It has 132 pages that provide enough space for you to record your breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. The goal of this food journal is to let you “use diet data to smash your goals sooner.”
It is also made with quality foremost in mind. This journal has a sturdy wire binding that makes the product very durable and a laminated cover that helps protect your notes. It also comes with thick pages that prevent any bleed through. Lastly, this fitness journal is designed to be portable and compact, ensuring that you can track your fitness anywhere. 15 Best Food Journals
Photo Credit by Life and Apples Store
How many of us set fitness goals for ourselves, only to fall short? It seems like when it comes to fitness, it’s far easier to set goals than to actually keep them. Fitness isn’t a one-stop event; rather, it is a commitment to a lifestyle change that makes a difference.
This fitness journal by Life & Apples aims to provide you with practical tools to achieve your health and wellness goals. The Wellness Planner by Life & Apples is described as a “motivational journal for healthy living” that “offers a set of tools and practices developed based on health, diet, and positive psychology scientific research.” 15 Best Food Journals
This fitness journal leaves no stone unturned when it comes to providing you with the resources to get and stay fit. It contains the following features:
- Food journal & meal planner for tracking meals and logging food
- Gratitude journal and daily affirmations
- Fitness and exercise scheduling
- Daily to-do section for increasing productivity
- Goal-setting section
- Weekly goals review
- Habit tracker
- Health parameters tracker
- Monthly calendar (undated)
- Bonus planner stickers
- Inspirational quotes
- Notes pages
Life & Apples believe that “planning is the key to success.” Its wellness planner was created so that you can “stay motivated and accountable for making better choices on your journey to health.”15 Best Food Journals
Photo Credit by The Things We Like
Although there are many things in life we can live without, we certainly can’t live very well without a healthy mind and body. Those are areas of our lives that we can’t afford to compromise on. The brand, “The Things We Like”, recognizes that for your mind and body to come first, you need the best tools and the best designs to keep you motivated. This is why they “have chosen to work only with top quality materials latest psychology techniques, which are guaranteed to deliver… high expectations.”
This premium fitness journal from “The Things We Like” come with a full-color printing matt lamination cover and has a total of 206 pages. It has black and white inner page printing as well as an extra sturdy double gold coil spiral binding. It has gold corners to prevent bending and has an amazing pre-printed page layout with the weekly meal plan, shopping list, weekly goals and challenges, motivation, and inspiration.
This product from “The Things We Like” looks incredibly premium at first glance, with its marble-like cover design and gold lettering. The aim of this premium design is to delight users so that they cherish this product and use it to lead a healthier lifestyle.
Photo Credit by Clever Fox Wellness
This beautiful wellness journal by Clever Fox aims to help you kickstart your fitness journey, regardless of “whether you are striving to eat healthier, cope with a physical or mental condition, lose weight, or gain muscles.” This one of a kind wellness journal was created with the input of health, fitness, and nutrition experts.
The Clever Fox wellness journal aims to help you feel strong, lose weight, and have more energy. All of us can do with a little more of that in life! It uses positive psychology techniques to help you feel your best and take control of your health habits. It also has a thoughtfully designed layout: a top goals page, monthly calendars, weekly sections for goals setting and habit tracking, daily food logs with wellness and activity trackers, a results page, and dot-grid pages for additional health tracking. 15 Best Food Journals
This wellness journal also stands out from the rest by having enough pages to last 6 months of fitness tracking. It is also not dated, so you can start at any time. This journal comes with beautifully printed colorful layouts, an A5-sized (5.5″ x 8″) soft-touch PU-leather hardcover, and 120 gsm thick no-bleed paper that will withstand heavy everyday tracking. It also comes with an elastic pen holder and a closure band, 3 bookmarks, a pocket for notes, complimentary stickers, and a quick start guide.
Photo Credit by BookFactory Store
BookFactory is a veteran-owned brand based in the United States and their books are produced from Ohio. This food journal by BookFactory is 120 pages long and measures 5” x 7”. It has an elegantly simple design, featuring a durable translucent cover and a side bound wire-O binding that keeps the notebook laying flat. The design is reminiscent of a high school notebook – all the better for you to do your ‘homework’ of food tracking! 15 Best Food Journals
This journal has generous spaces for you to record your food, allowing you to organize your meals every day. You have the space to enter up to 5 meals, and also keep track of your water consumption. Its log pages also have a place for you to total your daily calories as well as your carbohydrates, fat, and protein intake.
To keep things personal, this food journal has a user data page. It also has space for you to enter the date as well as the day of the week. It features archival safe, acid-free, 60 lb. paper. This popular food journal has an average of 4.2 stars on Amazon. 15 Best Food Journals
Photo Credit by Memory Minder Journals
This journal by DietMinder is a deluxe food diary that has plenty of room for you to record quantities and food counts (calories, fat, carbs, protein, etc.) of breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. It also features a special area for daily totals, making it easy for you to quickly review your progress.
Each “day” in this food journal consists of two pages, with additional space for you to enter your exercise details as well. An aspect that sets this food journal apart from its competitors is that it has a special section, entitled “Favorite Foods”, that details the food count of over 100 common foods and has space for you to add your own favorite food information. It also has a “Goals” section in which you can record your starting statistic, state your goals, and even paste a “before” picture. This section is great because it reminds you of how far you’ve come – and how far you have left to go in your fitness goals.
The DietMinder food journal averages 4.6 stars on Amazon and users praise it for being an outstanding tool for weight loss. One user says that he is in love with this food journal and has lost “seven pounds” since starting to use it.
Photo Credit by Funny Hunni Press
This food journal has a hilarious expletive-laden title that is sure to turn heads. Sometimes, when you’re hard at work to achieve your fitness goals, a funny food journal is just what you need to remind you to go easy on yourself. Although being fit often entails some form of sacrifice and discipline, it needn’t all be gloomy! Sometimes it pays off to simply laugh at yourself.
This food journal is perfect if “you want to lose weight and like swearing and sarcasm.” It is a “funny tough love diet and exercise planner” that will “support you in your weight loss goals from being a Weak Ass B*tch! to becoming a Bad Ass B*tch!” It allows you to track all your fitness statistics and “not die of boredom in the process.”
The unique food journal from “Funny Hunni Press” has 90 daily pages for you to track your food and fitness activities. It also contains goals pages, 30/60/90 day progress reports, and space for you to track your weight and body measurement losses and gains. It also has “rude” motivational quotes to inspire you to keep going. Pick this journal for a completely unique experience.
Photo Credit by ATDAWN Store
This food journal from ATDAWN is for anyone who is working to get into better shape. From beginning to end, the ATDAWN Food Journal comes with meal plans. It also allows you to write down and see your daily food intake. With this journal, you can track your calories and your total carbs, fats, and sodium intake per meal.
The purpose of this journal is to give you a better perception of how much you actually eat and make sure that your meals support your fitness (and weight loss) goals. This notebook has sides that are bound with wire-O binding, ensuring that it lays flat. It also features archival safe, acid-free, 60 lb. paper. Its page dimensions are 3 1/2″ x 5 1/4″, meaning that it can fit easily in your pocket or your handbag. It is designed to be convenient for you to take out and start recording anytime, anywhere.
With this food journal, you can easily record your food consumption: breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. This will help you organize all of your meals for the day. In addition, you can also keep track of your daily activities and your mood. It is the perfect daily companion for your journey to becoming the best version of yourself.
Photo Credit by KUNITSA CO. Store
This wellness journal from Kunitsa Co. stands out from the rest by being created specifically for women in mind. It is available in a chic pink or walnut brown color.
The goal of this beautifully crafted journal “motivates and keeps you accountable over 90 days.” It has guided pages that help you to achieve your fitness and diet goals. Its pages also contain gentle prompts for self-love and reflection. It highlights the fact that wellness isn’t all about dieting and discipline – it’s also about loving and cherishing your own body.
The Food and Exercise Journal for Women allows you to journal daily, tracking what you eat, your physical activity, calories, weight, sleep, mood, energy, and water intake. In other words, it is designed for you to keep track of all the parameters of health to ensure that you’re living your best life. It is an all-in-one food diary, workout tracker, meal planner, and weight loss journal.
This journal is so confident that it will change your life that you can return it within 30 days for a full refund if it doesn’t work for you, no questions asked. However, it has a high rating of 4.6 stars on Amazon. This means that you’re more than likely to find it to be a wonderful tool for your fitness journey.
Photo Credit by Paper Junkie
Sometimes it can feel like a chore to have to document every single calorie, drink of water, and pound. Every few hours, you’ll need to take out your notebook, and record your every health choice. Well, if you’re looking to spice things up, this pocket food journal might be the right one for you.
This food journal is “designed to make the process of writing down your meals and recording your water intake fun”. It also provides space for you to leave yourself motivational notes. Your fitness journal is going to be more enjoyable when you have inspirational quotes to fuel you along the way!
This fun food journal can be used by athletes who need to cut or bulk into a muscular physique. Or it can be used by anyone looking to lose some weight. This food journal comes in 3 packs. Each pack has 98 sheets or 196 pages with spaces to track macronutrients and calories. It is also in pocket size. Its cover measures 5.7 x 3.6 inches and the inner sheets measure 5.25 x 3.5 inches. This makes it around the size of your hand – perfect for carrying around wherever you go!
Photo Credit by Portage Store
This food journal by the Portage Store brings food tracking back to basics. It has a simple design that is just like filling in a form. This no-frills format allows for quick and organized recording, ensuring that you don’t miss any details. It may not be as elaborate as other food journals, but this clean, compact journal will still do the trick.
This food journal comes with a helpful page that details common foods and their calories. It is 8” x 4” in size. This means that it doesn’t take up too much room in your home or in your bag on the go. It has 3 packs, each containing 140 pages (70 sheets).
The food journal has an extra-thick cover of .75mm, which is twice as rigid as most competitors. This extra stability provides a sturdy writing surface. This journal averages 4.5 stars on Amazon. A customer remarks, “I loved the journals. They are a good size to carry around or to keep at your desk. Pages are spacious enough to track all your meals, snacks, and beverages!”
Photo Credit by CBJ
This beautiful wellness journal is by “Coaching By Jennifer” (CBJ). It features water-color like designs on the cover and on the subsequent pages. It comes with a 9″ x 7″ spiral-bound hardcover. The CBJ Well Journal features pages for 12 weeks of tracking daily nutrition, fitness, and lifestyle choices.
This journal allows you to set your goals and keep track of your progress. An attractive feature of this wellness journal is that it also has gratitude prompts. Nothing keeps us motivated and focused like being grateful for the little things in life! It also has mantras and daily inspirational quotes to get you feeling your best every day.
Additionally, this food journal has pages for you to track your weight and body measurements. It also has extra pages for you to list your favorite recipes, meals, and notes. In other words, you have plenty of space to jot down every the aspect of your fitness.
This food journal averages 4.5 stars on Amazon. Users praise it for its beautiful layout and its effectiveness in helping them achieve their fitness goals. Get this product if you want a well-designed journal that will kickstart your fitness journey!
Photo Credit by Fitlosophy Store
If you’re a person of faith and want to maintain a healthy lifestyle, this journal may be for you. On the front cover is printed the words, “Grateful, joyful, blessed.” This unique journal allows you to combine your fitness journey with aspects of your faith.
The Fitlosophy Fitspiration faith journal allows you to track your physical health, spiritual mindfulness, and overall well-being for 16 weeks. With this journal, you can “start the day with gratitude for God and his gifts while finding inspiration in truth and included Bible verses.”
You can easily track healthy disciplines, set goals, and create a habit of nourishment, physical activity, and prayer. This journal gives you space to “flex the faith muscle with daily check-ins that strengthen mind, body, and soul.”
The idea of this journal is to connect your physical self with your spiritual self. When you’re happier and grateful on the inside, it translates to results on the outside. Pick this fitness journal if you’re looking for a food journal with a touch of the spiritual.
Photo Credit by KUNITSA CO. Store
When it comes to being mindful of the foods that you eat, you might create a positive impact in an area that probably doesn’t come to mind: the environment. The average American wastes nearly 1/3 of all the food they buy. We can be so used to purchasing food, storing it in our kitchen cabinets, and then forgetting about it. Or we might purchase food that we only eat a small portion of. All this creates waste.
This food journal approaches the subject of meal planning from the angle of encouraging you to reduce your waste footprint. It helps you to focus on reducing your food waste, thus saving money. It allows you to record your perishables and leftovers, so you don’t forget to eat them.
This food journal is one that you can stick onto your fridge so you see it constantly. It is designed to be double perforated. This allows you to grab the grocery list, while the rest of the pad stays on the fridge. It is also sturdy and strong and won’t fly off the fridge, even with the door opening and closing constantly. This peach pink food journal from Kunitsa Co. averages 4.7 stars on Amazon. 15 Best Food Journals
Photo Credit by FITIME Store
“If not now, when?” declares this journal boldly on its cover. It’s an excellent question indeed. When it comes to getting in shape, there is no better time than now.
This food journal has a singular goal in mind: help you to live a healthier life. It has a 12-week goal-setting planner that is designed to help you to succeed in your fitness goals. The aim of this goal-setting planner is to motivate you to set your targets and hit them. Users are encouraged to “establish a game plan by setting 12-week goals.” They are then encouraged to “break them down into smaller, weekly goals.” You get to plan your workouts and meals each week. You’ll also be prompted to reward yourself to help you stay motivated. 15 Best Food Journals
At the end of each week, you’ll get a chance to reflect on your goals, log accomplishments, and get rewarded. With this fitness tracker, you can record your daily meals, exercise, and water intake. You’ll also get to track your weight, BMI, and body measurements. This journal also has coloring pages, inspirational quotes, and tips to get you excited about your fitness journey.
Other related topics you might like to read:
- 15 Best Influencer Girls with Muscle
- 15 Best Brands For Home Fitness Equipment
- Foam Roller vs Theragun Massager: Which One is Better?
- Harvard Health Publishing (2017) The sweet danger of sugar.
- Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2020) Physical Activity for a Healthy Weight.
Physical Activity for a Healthy Weight | Healthy Weight, Nutrition, and Physical Activity | CDC