Keep track of your eating habits for three days (two week- days and one weekend day) using the healthy-eating log or use the Dietitians of Canada online tool www.eatracker.ca.
Tracking will show you how much you are eating during the day (you’d be surprised!) and where you need to improve your eating habits. Be sure to note where you are eating. We often eat more when our attention is not focused on our plate, such as when we eat in our car, in front of the television or at the computer.
- Record everything you eat and drink as well as when and why you ate.
- Determine your number of servings from each food group using the Eat smart! serving sizes (e.g., 1 cup of juice = 2 fruit servings).
- Add up your servings for each food group.
- Compare your total number of servings each day with the minimum number of servings recommended in the Eat smart! Eating plan.
Example of an entry on the Healthy Eating Log:
|Food eaten and quantity:||Sandwich – 2 Tbsp peanut butter, 1 medium banana, and 2 thin slices of toast|
|Why and where I did I eat?||Hungry, at work|
|Servings:||1 fruit, 2 grains, 1 plant protein|
Click here to download your Healthy-Eating Log
A three-day record can’t tell you how you eat over the long term, but it can give you feedback to help you improve your eating habits. Start by making the easiest changes first:
- meal-by-meal is a great way to go – make one change at breakfast (e.g., switch from butter to nut butter on your toast or use lower fat milk on your cereal) then move on to lunch;
- focus your changes on one food group each week;
- think variety – try an alternative new food each week;
- accurately measure your portion sizes – a healthy serving size is probably much smaller than you think;
- plan your meals ahead and make a list for your grocery shopping – it will help you to avoid impulse buying and save you money; and
- always shop for groceries after eating a meal – you will make healthier purchases!