Saturday, March 29, 2014

Lose It!

Here's a handy app I came upon about a year ago. Its free, although there is an upgrade subscription (I think ~ $35/yr). The free version isn't loaded with ads popping up all over the place, just a single ad, always in the same spot promoting the upgrade. I have it on my android phone, my iPad and my PC. (No blackberry version.)

I used the free app for almost a year then, being pleased, splurged on the upgrade, which allows tracking more nutrients, more reports and such.

Its not a diet - its basically a calculator/journal for tracking all you eat. If you accept the premise that Calories In have to be lower than Calories Out to lose weight, then this kind of app can be very helpful.

In the beginning, I didn't realize there was a PC version and I just had it on my phone and iPad. Keeping track of things basically the same, but on the PC site there are forums, faqs, moderators to help, social networking opportunities for those who want to buddy up or participate in challenges and such. (Not my cup of tea.) But through the reading the forums I was able to 'mature' from simply counting calories in/out, to balancing the nutrients in those calories.

The app isn't perfect, but I have found it helpful. The fact that I pretty much always have my phone in my pocket makes it easy to administer. If I grab something to eat it very easy to punch it in. I don't have to go find a book and look stuff up and write it down.  Just search the database or my list of favourites, click and done.

In Lose It! you enter your age, gender, approximate normal activity level, current weight, your target weight, and the rate of loss (or gain) you would like to achieve (between 0.5 and 2 lbs It calculates how many calories a day you need to take in in order to achieve that goal. If your goal is unrealistic or unhealthy, the daily intake you need for your plan will show up in red instead of green.

If you expend energy over and above your normal level, you can enter that as well and get a calorie credit . Or you can get fancier. (I eventually did.) The app can sync with assorted other health type apps. I wear a FitBit Flex wrist monitor that counts my steps, and I have a Withins wireless bathroom scale that syncs my weights and % body fat data.

As you log what you eat, the nutrients are sorted and calculated. You can set and monitor goals beyond straight calorie count to include proteins,, fats, and carbs, fibre, sugars, salt and more. (This offering is basic on the freebie and more expansive on the upgrade.)

My smart phone came preloaded with a zillion useless apps. In addition, my carrier keeps adding other useless apps that I'll never use and that just clutter up my phone. But Lose It! is one app I'm glad I found.

I have no relationship or business interest in this app - just a satisfied customer!)

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