Keeping a food diary is a great way to take a look at your eating habits including what you eat, when you eat, and how you feel when you eat. It can also help you identify possible food intolerances, and if your goal happens to include losing a few pounds, a food log is a great weight-loss tool. In fact, starting a food diary is often the first thing registered dietitians ask their clients to do. The simple act of writing down what you eat can help increase self-awareness, which may lead you to make healthier choices, explains Amy Gorin, M.S., R.D., owner of Amy Gorin Nutrition .
In order to make sure you’re getting the most out of creating a food diary you want to make sure you’re keeping tabs on the right things. Here are the six things registered dietitians tell their clients about food logging.
Take your lifestyle into consideration, explains registered dietitian Jenny Beth Kroplin . "There are many online tools, apps, and handwritten versions of food journals and trackers that can be quite helpful." If an app like MyFitnessPal is your jam, go for it. If you'd rather not see the calories, try jotting your food down in a note on your phone or using a good old-fashioned notebook.
If you're a visual person, a photo food journal is another good option. "I say focus on making calories count instead of just counting calories alone," says Sarah-Jane Bedwell , R.D., L.D.N. "For some people, taking pictures of their meals and reviewing them at the end of the day is a better way to do this because they can actually see if there is a balance. Look for a variety of food groups and colors, and pay attention to portion sizes."
2. Consider recording times and emotions, too.
If you're setting up your own food journal (instead of using an app), there are a few details you'll want to write down. "The key elements for documentation are spaces for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus two to three spaces for snacks, a space for exercise, and a space for behavior or feeling," says Kroplin. Logging how you feel when you eat can help you identify emotional hunger cues. "For example, say you jot down that you felt angry when you ate 10 cookies at 4 P.M. A week later, you read your diary and find that you ate those same 10 cookies every time you felt mad. By identifying that habit, you can correct it and start a new, healthier habit," says Lindsey Pine, M.S., R.D., owner of Tasty Balance Nutrition .
Recording the time you eat can also be helpful—personally, when I started logging my food, I noticed that most of my mindless snacking happened after dinner. After recognizing that, I started eating more filling dinners with protein and fiber to keep me full and away from the munchies in my cupboard.
3. Start by writing things down as you eat them.
"Make a commitment to log items right after you eat them," suggests Pine. "If you wait until the end of the day, you’re probably more likely to forget accurate portion sizes and not include small tastes of food, beverages, and condiments." Plus, after a crazy day at the office or running around, logging everything you ate that day can just feel too overwhelming to bother with.
4. And vow to be completely honest with yourself.
"If you aren’t honest with a food journal, the only person you're hurting is yourself," says Keri Gans , M.S., R.D., author of The Small Change Diet . Even though it's tempting to only log the good stuff, hold yourself accountable for writing it all down—even the things you're not thrilled with. *"*Record 100 percent of what you eat—every beverage and every little nibble (even from someone else’s plate) needs to be accounted for."
"Making dinner and tasting your dish while cooking? Write it down. At work and passing the candy bowl for just one piece? Write it down," adds Jodi Danen, R.D., family nutrition blogger at The Average RD . "We do a lot of mindless eating that we don’t always account for. Writing it down is a very visual way of seeing your habits."
5. Don't get too caught up in the calories (but be aware of them).
"While starting a food diary is a fantastic way to become more aware of the food we are eating, it is important to keep in mind that calories are not the only thing that matters when it comes to good nutrition," says Emily Cope-Kyle, M.S., R.D., owner and consulting dietitian at Emily Kyle Nutrition . "Sure, counting calories can help give you a more accurate picture of what you're consuming, but a 1,500-calorie diet full of processed food is much, much different than a 1,500-calorie diet full of fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains."
Plus, while calorie counting can give you a good estimate of what foods you're overeating (even healthy but high-calorie ones, like avocados or almonds), it's impossible to be entirely sure. "My number one piece of advice when starting a food diary is not to look for perfection, as you will never be able to 100 percent accurately track your intake, so watch out for becoming obsessed with calories," adds Cope-Kyle.
6. Most importantly, use your food log to learn about your eating habits.
"A food journal may initially tell you how many calories or grams of sugar and fat you are eating, but it can tell you so much more," says Maxine Yeung, R.D., C.P.T. and owner of The Wellness Whisk . "Food diaries are not meant to make you feel bad, but rather to make you aware of your choices and eating habits. They give you insight to your relationship with food."
And it's not all about seeing where you can improve—take notice of the things you're proud of, too. "Look for things you are doing well and pat yourself on the back for those things in addition to the things you can improve upon," says Bedwell.
When approached in a healthy and mindful way, food logs can be a great way to jumpstart weight loss and get to know yourself a little better in the process. Plus, it's a great excuse to invest in a pretty new notebook, right?
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Plain yogurt is a multi-vitamin super-food used in many homemade face mask recipes for beautiful youthful skin. What makes yogurt so special? Yogurt is loaded with vitamins and minerals that nourish and revitalize dehydrated skin. If you have acne-prone skin, use yogurt face masks to banish those pesky pimples. Yogurt is a great ingredient for getting rid acne naturally, as it contains anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties, as well as alpha hydroxyl acids, which kill acne-causing bacteria.
Here’s a simple list of the nutrients found in yogurt and how they are useful for skin:
Mango is aptly nicknamed as the supreme summer fruit'
DIY Mango face packs that will help you to have flawless skin
mango is here! Who doesn't love eating mangoes; especially when you have varieties of mangoes to choose from? Mango is aptly nicknamed as 'the supreme summer fruit,' as it helps to prevent heat stroke during those hot months of the year. Other than that, it is rich in
vitamin-A, vitamin-C and minerals like copper, potassium and magnesium. The
antioxidants properties present in the mangoes protect our body against many harmful diseases. But, did you know that mango can play a major role in enhancing your beauty, too? Yes, you heard us right! We have rounded up the best DIY Mango face packs that will help you to have soft, supple and flawless skin this summer.
1. For Exfoliation
As we all know that exfoliation is extremely important for our skin, as it helps to remove the dead cells from our skin. And, using a mango scrub will help us in doing same. All you need is 1 tablespoon mango pulp, 1 teaspoon of organic honey and 1 tablespoon of milk. Mix these ingredients well and apply it on your face. Leave it for 10 minutes. Rinse it off with cold water and feel the softness in your skin's texture. (Also Read: 5 Natural Summer Fruit Packs For A Nourished Skin)
Exfoliation is extremely important for our skin.
2. For Glowing Skin
Mangoes have natural anti-tanning properties and vitamins that fight against inflammation and sun burns. For this face pack, you will need 1 tablespoon of mango pulp, 2 teaspoons of wheat flour and 1 teaspoon of organic Honey. Mix all the ingredients together to make a thick paste. Apply it on face and sun-affected parts. Let it stay on for 15 minutes and wash with normal water. (Also Read: 10 Foods for Glowing Skin)
Mangoes have natural anti-tanning properties and vitamins. Photo Credit: iStock
3. For Tanned Skin
We all have tried numerous anti-tan packs, but still haven't achieved those desired results. Don't worry, as we have got another face pack to your rescue! This anti-tan mango face pack is extremely effective. Take 1 tablespoon of mango pulp, 2 tablespoon of besan, 2 teaspoons of grounded almonds and 1 teaspoon of honey. Mix these ingredients well until it becomes a thick paste, and apply it all over your face and leave for 15 minutes. Rinse it off with cold water. Repeat this thrice a week for better results. (Also Read: Tanned Skin May Look Cool But Can Lead to Skin Ageing and Even Cancer)
This anti-tan mango face pack is extremely effective 4. For Soft Skin
This face pack will give your skin nutrients of oats, mangoes and almond and will act as organic scrubbers. All you need is 2 tablespoon of mango pulp, 1 tablespoon of oats, 2 teaspoon raw milk and 3-4 grounded almonds. Apply this face pack on your face and scrub it off after 15 minutes. Wash your face with water.
This face pack will give your skin nutrients of oats.
5. For Acne
Mango pulp with curd and honey can be a great aid for people with oily skin. It will help you to fight with pigmentation and acne by shedding off the excessive oil from face. Extract pulp from a ripe mango; add 2 tablespoon of curd and 2 teaspoons of honey. Apply this face pack on your face and wash it off after 15 minutes. (Also Read: Your Guide to the Causes and Remedies for Forehead Acne)
Mango pulp with curd and honey can be a great aid for people with oily skin These amazing mango face-packs will give you the best results when used regularly.
Egg white is one humble kitchen ingredient that can do wonders for skin
It is loaded with essential nutrients and minerals
Albumin is a vital protein which helps tighten the skin
Egg white is one humble kitchen ingredient that can do wonders to your skin. If you wish to have a soft, supple and nourished skin, then egg white can help you to a significant extent. It is loaded with essential nutrients and minerals that can boost your
skin's health in a natural way. Albumin is a vital protein that is present in egg whites, which helps to tighten the skin and reduces the formation of blackheads by shrinking the open pores. If you're tired of spending those extra bucks on parlour and spa treatments to get a
glowing skin, then bring these homemade DIY egg white face masks to your rescue. Apart from giving a nourished skin, applying egg white on your face can also help to solve a wide range of skin issues. All you have to do is to separate the egg yolks and whites. Read on to know more about them.
Lemon And Egg White Face Mask
Skin Type: For Oily Skin
This face mask is perfect for oily skin, and works as a natural bleaching agent due to the presence of lemon in it. All you need is 1 egg and 1/2 lemon. Crack the shell and separate the egg white in a bowl. Add in the juice of half lemon. Whisk thoroughly for a while and apply a thin layer of the mask on your face. Allow it to stay for around 10 minutes and then rinse off with water. Apply this egg white face mask 2 or 3 times a week, and watch out for effective results.
This face mask is perfect for oily skin Corn Starch And Egg White Face Mask
Skin Type: For Normal Skin
This combination of corn starch and egg white can act as a perfect skin cleanser. All you need is 1 egg and 2 teaspoons of corn starch. Extract the egg white and transfer in a bowl. Add in 2 teaspoons of corn starch and whisk the two ingredients properly. Apply it on your face and leave it on for 10-15 minutes. Rinse off with water and pat dry with a clean towel.
Combination of corn starch and egg white can act as a perfect skin cleanser Coconut Oil And Egg White Face Mask
Skin Type: For Dry Skin
If you happen to have a dry skin, then this face mask is just apt for you. All you need is lemon juice, coconut oil and 1 egg. Crack the shell and separate the egg white in a bowl. Whisk the egg and add 1 teaspoon of coconut oil and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice in it. Apply the mask on your face and let it stay for 15 minutes. Once it is done, rinse off with normal water. Repeat the procedure for 2 or 3 times a week to get a hydrated, toned and supple skin. (Also Read: Coconut Oil for Face: 7 Ways to Use it For a Beauty Boost)
If you happen to have a dry skin, then coconut is just apt for you. So, it's time to bring these easy homemade face packs to use! Go for them as per your skin type and watch out for effective results.
Keeping your oven clean is very important because the burnt, baked-on food can release carcinogens as it continues to burn. Off-the-shelf oven cleaners contain a lot of toxins and if it comes in contact with your skin, you could suffer, since it can eat through your skin.
Natural oven cleaning products and green cleaning products can help, but a little baking soda and vinegar may be all you need for a homemade oven cleaner. Still not convinced? Let’s dig into the “why” a little bit.
Lye and ammonia are commonly found in oven cleaners and will break through the skin, remove layers of skin and the fumes can easily make their way into your lungs. Beyond that, once you have cleaned the oven, guess what happens. Those fumes linger and get even worse when you use the oven the bake your next delicious pie. In fact, that pie will end up completely contaminated with those toxins! You may not taste it, but they are there. Research confirms that Easy-Off oven cleaner and Mr. Muscle oven and grill cleaner, for example, contain poisons that can cause difficulty in breathing due to the fumes as well as swelling in the throat. Some may experience severe pain in the throat, burning in the nose, eyes, ears, lips or tongue and even vision impairment. The stomach and intestines may be affected with abdominal pain, blood in the stool, burns that develop holes in the esophagus, and vomiting with blood. Fainting, low blood pressure and organ damage can occur, and the skin may get burns and holes in it, in addition to general irritation. (1)
There are a few specific ingredients that are known to cause serious health issues, specifically asthma and damage to the reproductive system, such as monoethanolamine (MEA), glycol ethers and alkyl phenol ethoxylates (APEs). (2)
Some others ingredients that you should be aware of are butane, diethylene glycol monobutyl ether (this is also found in many auto care products, at-home hair dyes, and stains or glosses for paint and wood products), monoethanolamine (MEA) and, as noted earlier, sodium hydroxide (lye). All of these ingredients can cause burns to eyes and skin upon contact, as well as burns to the mouth, throat and stomach if swallowed. (3) Butane is one of the more harmful volatile substances to inhale and can cause something called ‘sudden sniffing death’ — cardiac arrhythmia/arrest when person is stressed or does heavy exercise during or soon after being exposed to butane.
Lye, one of the main ingredients, is so powerful that it can decompose carcasses! Sodium or potassium hydroxide is used to break down the tissue of animal carcasses and even deceased humans. That’s pretty scary. And because it’s cheap, it’s found in tons of household cleaners. (4)
Some ovens contain a self-cleaning feature, and this can definitely help you avoid dangerous toxins. However, you still need to make sure you are following the directions carefully when using the feature since it can produce carbon monoxide, especially if there is a lot of baked on food in your oven.
I know plenty of people who prefer to avoid the self-cleaning feature and clean their ovens with my homemade oven cleaner instead. However, if you decide to use the self-cleaning feature, the North Texas Poison Center recommends leaving the home during the self-cleaning cycle because the Teflon coating inside the oven can release fumes when at high temperatures. The self-cleaning feature usually takes the oven to about 600 degrees — high enough to release those fumes. If inhaled, the fumes can cause flu-like symptoms and difficulty breathing. And don’t forget your pet! Pets can also experience these problems, too. (5)
Homemade Oven Cleaner
You will need the following:
a pastry brush or similar
First, take out the oven racks. You will need to clean them separately in your sink.
Place the castile soap and baking soda into your bowl and mix. Castile soap is a favorite of mine since it’s made with pure, chemical-free ingredients. It can gently wash your face, provide sparkling window cleaning results or offer a good scrub for the tub! For now, let’s focus on oven cleaning.
Baking soda is another great ingredient for oven cleaning, offering the abrasive texture to help remove stubborn baked-on food. You can even add a little baking soda to your dish washing cycle to help clean your dishes. Baking soda is a nahcolite, containing sodium bicarbonate, which is what helps with the cleansing process.
Now add the vinegar and orange essential oil and blend, adding water until you get a nice, thick paste-like consistency. Vinegar is antibacterial and makes for a perfect household cleaning product. Orange essential oil is a great addition, not only for a nice scent, but it’s also antibacterial and contains powerful antimicrobial compounds called terpenes.
Let’s apply this homemade oven cleaner! Using your pastry brush, brush on the homemade oven cleaner until you have coated the entire surface. Allow it to sit for about 6–8 hours or overnight works well. It will foam up just a bit, which is normal.
After you have allowed it to do its work, it’s time to wipe it clean. Using another bowl filled with water, take your sponge and begin wiping the oven to reveal the clean surface. Use the bowl of water to clean the sponge each time you wipe, but you may need to change the water a few times.
Homemade Oven Cleaner
Total Time: 3 minutes
Serves: 1 application
2 tablespoons castile liquid soap
1⅓ cup baking soda
6 drops orange essential oil (optional)
¼ cup organic white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
In a glass bowl, blend all ingredients, using the water to help form a thick paste.
Brush onto the oven surface until completely coated.
Allow it to sit for about 8 hours or overnight.
Wear your gloves and wipe clean using a sponge and clean water.