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Monday, July 19, 2010 05:38 pm

I ate one Skittle today...

My sister Natalie is awesome. (Both of my sisters are awesome, of course, but only one of them is relevant to this post.) A dietician by trade and an avid fitness enthusiast, Natalie recently turned me on to an online tool that holds a lot of promise for my future fitness.

For a very long time, I’ve been kicking myself for not doing a better job of tracking what I eat. I know that if I did track my consumption, I would be confronted by some unpleasant truths – namely, that I probably get way too many calories from carbohydrates. Dieticians say you should get about 60 percent of your calories from carbohydrates, but I’m probably closer to 80 percent. (That’s just a guesstimate, of course.) Once I finally get in the habit of tracking what I eat, I’ll be in a much better position to identify consumption trends that sabotage my fitness and overall health.

Enter NutriMirror.com. It’s a free service that lets you log your food intake and offers nutrient values for your logged items, as well as helpful analysis to show you where your diet can improve. It contains a lot of nutrient values for foods I wouldn’t have expected to see in the database, such as pineapple salsa from Trader Joe’s.

Using this tool, I’ve already learned that my usual morning smoothie (recipe below) contains a lot of carbs but also a ton of fiber, which is why it keeps me going for so long. I’ve also realized that I consume far fewer calories than I should to maintain my weight. Someone at my height and weight should consume 2,657 calories a day to maintain weight. Between breakfast and lunch, I only consumed 775 calories total – less than one-third of my total. Unless I manage to consume 1,882 calories for dinner, I’ll probably end the day with a 1,000 calorie deficit. (Yes, I have been completely honest in tracking my consumption – I promise!) This whole time, I thought I ate too many calories…weird!

Enough about me and my nutrition. Someone else try this out and let me know how it goes. And as promised, here is my smoothie recipe. Modify as you see fit.

6 frozen strawberries
1 ripe banana
8 oz. orange juice

Just stick it in your blender and blend the heck out of it. You don’t need any milk because the banana acts as a thickener when it’s blended, and you don’t need any ice because the strawberries are frozen. If you want to jazz it up a bit, add in some berries or peaches. (Props to Amanda Robert for giving me the recipe…and word is, she got it from Dusty Rhodes. Both are former Illinois Times writers. We know how to keep it healthy here – except for those office parties at which we stuff our faces with cookies, cake and cheesy delights of all varieties. Forget I said anything.)

I’m going to go eat 1,882 calories worth of candy.
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