Health & Spirit

Nutrition News: Tracking Calories

Charlyn Fargo on

Tracking Calories

My friend Kim has dropped 25 pounds in the past year. Her secret? Tracking her calories. She uses an app on her phone -- MyFitnessPal -- to know how many calories she eats. Her goal starting out was 1600 calories a day. When she reached a plateau, she dropped it to 1500. At her second plateau, she moved the goal to 1400, which is where she has stayed.

She also makes sure she does some exercise every day -- walking on her treadmill or outside on her breaks at work and/or lifting a few weights at the gym.

With the weight loss, she dropped from a size 14 to a 10 and saw her total cholesterol drop 18 points and her LDL (bad) cholesterol drop 20 points. Her HDL (good) cholesterol stayed the same. She's thrilled with the new numbers but says the most important thing is that at age 60, she feels the better than she has in years.

We all want those same results. What made Kim start on her journey?

"I just got tired of feeling the way I did," she told me. "Once I started tracking things, I started seeing progress. That kept me going."


There is no easy way to lose weight, eat healthier or begin exercising consistently. It takes commitment, fortitude and step-by-step good decisions about our food choices and use of our time. We all have a million excuses why we don't have time to work out or prepare healthier dinners.

I know them, because I've used them, too.

If you've tried to lose weight only to regain it, let's try again. Download an app and start tracking. Call a friend and start walking. Choose the salad bar and light dressing over the burger.

This time next year, you'll be glad you did.


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