A recent study showed that around 80 percent of Americans plan to make some major changes to the way they eat. The number of people who will actually do it? Probably much lower. We get it. Changing your diet is hard, and sticking with a nutrition plan is even harder. Temptation is everywhere, and it’s all too easy to lose your motivation.
Fear not, because these four apps are here to rescue you from the pit of dietary despair. From helping you shop like a nutrition pro to giving you the lowdown on how to order healthy foods from your favorite restaurants, there’s an app for that. Actually, there are several — and we’ve narrowed it down to the best and easiest to use.
4 great apps for tracking your nutrition
When you’re on a strict nutrition plan, an invitation to lunch can be an anxiety-inducing experience. How do you avoid eating way too many calories in one sitting or make sure your entree is gluten-free without making a big scene?
Download HealthyOut, and it will scan the menu at wherever you’re eating to find selections that are consistent with your dietary restrictions. The only downside to HealthyOut is that it doesn’t have data for every restaurant … yet.
Shopping for healthy food is a lot easier with ShopWell. Tell ShopWell your goals, restrictions, allergies and other nutrition-related information, and the app will help you create customized shopping lists. It will also suggest new foods to try.
There are a lot of similar apps out there, but ShopWell is a winner for its streamlined platform and ample features (including a UPC scanner that gives you instant details about a product). ShopWell can even help you navigate the grocery store to find what you’re looking for.
There are more than a few calorie-tracking apps to choose from. Lifesum takes a more holistic approach to fitness tracking, going above and beyond simple calorie counting. Aimed at helping you achieve a more balanced lifestyle, Lifesum offers various plans based on your unique goals and concerns. Once you figure out the plan that’s best for you, start logging your diet and fitness details.
Over time, Lifesum will build a profile to help you reach your goals faster and more effectively. This friendly little app will even give you a digital nudge when it’s time to drink some water or grab a healthy bite to eat.
Keeping a food journal can be a highly effective way to start making changes to your diet and lifestyle. Tracking your eating habits can help you identify food allergies, gain control over cravings, and rein in those oversized portions. A carefully kept food diary can even help you figure out if certain factors are triggering your overeating or bad food choices.
MyFitnessPal makes the whole food diary thing super easy — and even kind of fun. With a food database that’s over 5 million deep, you should be able to get the nutritional lowdown on anything you’re thinking about eating. Plus, you can add recipes from anywhere on the web and connect with a friendly community for advice and inspiration.