Counting Calories, Watching Others
I’ve had a lot of people contact me over the last week. Old readers. New readers. People trying to lose weight. People that have lost weight. Media. Advertisers. Business owners. Oprah (no, not really).
One business owner in particular was Dean of PapayaHead.com. Dean started PapayaHead late last year to help those trying to eat healthy (or those with allergies). With the site you can create recipes from scratch, save and share those recipes with others (or yourself), and even compose printable shopping lists on the fly to take with you to the grocery store.
PapayaHead really shines with the information that it provides about food. I signed up for free and briefly filled out a profile — I listed what foods I like and dislike. If I were allergic to a food, I would list it here and the program would warn me if I added a recipe that contained such an item.
Once my profile was created, I added a recipe to calculate the calories that I consumed last night with my homemade enchiladas — PapayaHead was right on the money. Not only did it tell me about the calories, protein, carbs, and fat I consumed, but it also gave me a myriad of information like if the enchiladas were heart healthy, high in fiber, low in sugar, low in sodium, etc.
It provides tons of information in a quick, easy to read summary:
(My enchiladas were heart healthy and free of sugar)
The nutrition meter you see on the right is a fast, numerical way to see whether or not what I’m eating is generally healthy. The higher the number, the better, with meals ranked over 75 considered “healthy.”
I’ve been asked a lot recently if I pay attention to other items on a nutritional label — the answer is yes. While counting calories are the key to losing weight, I still watch the amount of sodium, sugar, fiber, and protein I consume on a daily basis. In my uneducated, humble opinion, here are the cliff notes why:
Sodium — leads directly to high blood pressure
Sugar — gives me that temporary energy, then crash
Fiber — a lack of fiber provides less than favorable experiences
Protein — building blocks of big, strong muscles
There are a lot of tools and services out there to help track this information. While that might be the case, we also didn’t help mold them. Dean, the CEO of PapayaHead, Inc. has agreed to read (and respond) to your suggestions and criticisms below. Try PapayaHead (it’s free, doesn’t cost a dime) and then let him know what you like, what you don’t like, and what will keep you using it.
Oh, and by the way — tomorrow is weigh-in number 51. This might be too much information, but an excess of fiber leads to good numbers on the scale.