5 Food Websites and Apps to Chew On

by Sandy Todd Webster on Jan 01, 2012

Food for Thought

It can be challenging to keep up with all of the website tools and applications for nutrition and weight loss, but here are a few standouts you might like for your clients.

HealthyWage.com: Betting on and Profiting From Weight Loss

Whether or not you agree with the idea of “gambling,” you have to admit this idea is novel. HealthyWage™ (www.HealthyWage.com) is offering Americans the opportunity to make money from losing weight. The company recently announced the launch of its “10% Challenge,” an innovative program allowing health-seekers nationwide to “bet on”—and profit from—shedding their unwanted pounds through any diet regimen and/or fitness program they choose to follow (Weight Watchers®, Jenny Craig®, Nutrisystem®, Atkins™ or any other formal or informal diet/fitness program).

How it works. Participants pay $100 for an opportunity to double their money—earn $200—for losing just 10% of their starting body weight, BMI aside, within 6 months. Each participant’s starting and ending weights are verified at one of thousands of HealthyWage health club partners throughout the U.S., with each member also self-reporting their weight online once per week.

What are your thoughts on tying monetary incentives to weight loss? Do you think it works? Weigh in at swebster@ideafit.com.

MealLogger.com: A Picture Is Worth 1,000 Words

This website (www.MealLogger.com) enables professionals to offer cost-effective individualized nutrition coaching to large numbers of clients by using visual, rather than written, client food logs.

How it works. Clients snap photos of each meal, snack or beverage they consume to build a visual food journal. The MealLogger website allows the professional to review what clients are eating and to comment constructively on ways to modify habits to reach goals.

Honest Label App: Presenting Concise Information

Launched at the end of September, the Honest Label Foods Scanner allows consumers to scan the bar codes of food products and receive clear, concise nutrition information based on customized settings. The app allows shoppers to quickly identify products made with ingredients they wish to avoid. It lists daily values based on a user’s personal needs rather than on an arbitrary serving size, making it ideal for all consumers, especially those with specific dietary needs. For more information, visit www.honestlabelfoods.com.

Lose It! App: To Help Clients Lose Those Extra Pounds

If you haven’t tried this website/app yet, it’s definitely worth a spin. Lose It! (www.LoseIt.com) is intuitive, it’s simple to use, and it gives users a good understanding of the energy-in, energy-out concept. Since Lose It! is preloaded with thousands of commercial food brands and fresh, whole foods that are quickly retrieved along with calories and serving sizes, users can simply create a diet-and-exercise log and tie it to weight loss goals. Lose It! takes age, height, weight, sex and activity level into account with target weight loss goals and then automatically adjusts daily calorie goals to fit the individual. The program teaches accountability subtly, yet effectively, and rewards milestones with gaming strategy (badges, levels, awards).

SparkPeople.com Weight Loss App: Rated #1

A study by researchers at Duke University Medical Center and the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services ranked the free mobile diet and fitness iPhone application from www.SparkPeople.com as the best iPhone weight loss application among 204 evaluated. The study was based on criteria established by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health, among others. It was published in the Journal of Translational Behavioral Medicine.

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About the Author

Sandy Todd Webster

Sandy Todd Webster IDEA Author/Presenter

Sandy Todd Webster is Editor in Chief of IDEA's publications, including the award-winning IDEA FITNESS JOURNAL and IDEA FOOD & NUTRITION TIPS, the industry's leading resources for fitness, wellness and nutrition professionals worldwide. Sandy joined IDEA in 2001 as executive editor of IDEA PERSONAL TRAINER and IDEA FITNESS MANAGER magazines and was promoted to lead the editorial team in 2003. More than 20 years in magazine publishing, marketing communications and creative services have shaped her straightforward approach to multi-channel communication. Early experience in Los Angeles as a sports writer/reporter, and then enriching years as a managing editor in allied health care publishing have pulled her across a spectrum of stimulating subject matter. Fitness, health and nutrition reside at the perfect center of this content continuum, she feels. A Chicago native, Sandy grew up fully engaged in various competitive sports. Her drive and dedication as an athlete translate to a disciplined work ethic and unwavering approach to challenge in her career. Shortly after graduating journalism school from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, she was recruited to L.A. for her first post in magazine publishing. After two decades of working on magazines--and now in the throes of applying the unbelieveable multi-media content delivery options available in the magazine 2.0 world--she is still "completely in love" with the creative process it takes to deliver meaningful, inspirational content to end users. She is an accomplished home cook and gardner who would love to combine those skills and passions with her health and fitness background to continue educating readers about a well-balanced, healthy lifestyle.