June 17, 2012
As suggested by the website, my current eating plan is far less than nutritious. Unfortunately, my current meal plans on a daily basis are completely lacking in fruits and vegetables. Choosemyplate.gov is a website that is backed by the United States Department of Agriculture, and while I do respect that fact, I cannot say that I appreciate the feedback I have been getting from this website. It has a huge lack of options when it comes to inputting a meal plan, implementing a meal plan, sticking to the meal plan, or even documenting the meal plan on the website. However, I do respect this class enough that I’ll try putting up with this website despite all of its flaws; I still say that a more in-depth and well-covered application would be far better off in helping people maintain healthy diets, or even help people to implement their own weight-loss diet.
I currently use MyFitnessPal and have had absolutely no problems with it for the past 21 months. I have come down from 450lbs to approximately 245lbs simply by being able to document my meal plan and my exercising done, far more in-depth than this website seems to allow. While I do recognize that this website allows you to document a generalized meal plan, I wish it were more exact and in-depth – such as having a chicken salad with nothing but lettuce, two cherry tomatoes, and some sliced carrots with no dressing (it just so happens to be a favorite food of mine ever since I have started to want to lose weight). Weight loss ultimately comes down to expending more calories in a day than you take in. The website (choosemyplate.gov) does not have the choice to be so precise in your meals. My personal chicken salad might be less than just 200 calories, pending on the amount of chicken I throw in (and I hate dressing, so that is never an option). However, the website we are instructed to use insists that the only real “chicken salad” to document has to be with fruits, which makes no sense to me. I do not know why we have to add in foods we are not eating just to document our meal plan. In the long haul, it is only adding more false information to go buy, and potentially giving you false readings on the number of calories taken in by a meal (not just with the chicken salads).
Having said that, I do like that the website is amazing simply because it is very generalized in the sense that people who do not have any previous background to dieting or weight loss can gain some pretty basic information and a little bit of guidance. I remember when I first started dieting; I was trying a no-carb diet, hoping that it would work for me. It lasted all of four weeks before I realized that it really was not helping me. Once those four weeks were up and I realized that I had not actually lost any weight, I decided it was time to try a different diet – cutting out all of the sugars and fats from my diet; which really meant no desserts, no candy (not that I eat candy anyway), just nothing sweet, and absolutely no unhealthy snacks (which was my biggest killer). I used to eat a bag of potato chips every two days. This diet seemed to work better after a good four week period or so, but I was still unsatisfied with my results, so I dug deeper and went in to see my own nutritionist at that point in time. Since then, my weight has just been shedding left and right – along with my blood pressure and asthma problems.
Onto business; my current eating habits as document in the “Food Diary Checkpoint” are actually very healthy. I do take in just enough protein, dairy, vegetables, fruits, and grains every 24 to 48 hours. While I might not get everything I need in a 24 hour period, I usually find a way to make up for it in the following hours.
My nutritional recommendations based on my customized food pyramid results are actually kind of typical for anyone, really; I am to be getting 10 ounces of grains, four cups of