Monitoring what you eat

Monitoring what you eat is an important part of lifestyle and weight management programs. We know that people who keep track of what they eat are more successful at losing weight and eating well.

Life is turned upside down after having a baby and that will often include what, how and when you eat. It is easy to slip into eating mindlessly or whenever you can in between looking after baby.

Writing down what, when, and why you eat can help you:

  • Eat more consciously and mindfully
  • Give you insights into your eating habits including what you eat and why
  • Understand the cues that trigger what you eat such as stress, tiredness, frustration
  • See where you may be able to improve your eating

Your own food diary

  • Download the Food diary from here
  • The first column is for recording where and when you ate. Try to be as specific as you can.
  • The second column is for recording what you ate. Again, try to be as accurate and inclusive as possible. This exercise is only for your eyes and is integral to helping you work out exactly how much energy you are taking into your body.
  • The third column is for writing what you were thinking and feeling at the time. For example, you may write “I’m starving; stomach burning” or “Very tired, feeling unmotivated”.
  • The fourth column is for writing any extra information you think is important. This may include comments such as whether you ate mindlessly, whether you ate until you felt uncomfortably full, or how you felt after eating.

Tips for filling out your food diary

  • A food diary is a personal, private activity, and we encourage you to be as honest with yourself as possible.
  • Keep the diary with you and record everything you eat and drink as you eat or drink it. You will be much more accurate if you record your intake as you go
  • Be as specific as possible so you can identify patterns and triggers in your eating. For example, instead of saying you ate at “home”, you could specify where exactly at home you ate (e.g. standing by the fridge, on the couch, at the dinner table).