We are what we eat; so, I get why we’re all obsessing over food and diets nowadays. Yet, how is it possible to keep track of everything that is going into our body? With MyFitnessPal app, it is actually not as difficult as it sounds.
With more than 19 million users, MyFitnessPal app is a super easy calorie counter that helps you set and achieve your nutritional goals. But don’t get the wrong idea; it’s not just for weight loss or a calorie deficit diet. The app will keep track of your macronutrients, exercise, and even water intake to reach a healthier and committed lifestyle.
How to use MyFitnessPal app?
MyFitnessPal app starts off with collecting information about your current physique and main goals, to properly place a caloric program that suits you. Whether you want to lose, gain or maintain your weight. It will suggest the number of calories you should consume daily, along with the amount of protein, carbs and fat. After that, you begin to record everything you eat into your “diary” on daily basis and check your progress. The macronutrients monitor will also allow you to keep track of your sodium and sugar intake to sustain a balanced diet
Some people may say that the process of entering everything you eat is too time-consuming. But with MyFitnessPal’s enormous food database, it would barely take 15 minutes out of your whole day. Just search for any food in any language you want, and you will get multiple results that can be directly added to your diary.
Also, not everything has to be searched and recorded manually. The smartest (and my favorite) feature in MyFitnessPal app is the barcode scanner. You can literally scan anything you want: cans, packed food, bars, even the bread you bought from a local bakery. Just by using your camera, every detail of the item you scan will be uploaded instantly to the app.
As for your workouts, there are options to enter cardiovascular, strength or workout routines to your diary. Now some of you may be using other fitness applications to track your daily activities. So why would you want to waste your time recording it again into MyFitnessPal?
Unless you don’t have to waste your time…
Can you link MyFitnessPal to other apps?
Over 50 apps are available to connect with MyFitnessPal. Whether you have a Fitbit or an Apple watch, your exercises and step count will be automatically uploaded to your daily diary.
As much as we’re admiring the high-tech app, unfortunately this feature is not applicable to the Huawei watch and health application. It may be disappointing for Huawei users, such as myself, but definitely not a deal breaker.
In general, we are impressed with how smart and easy to use MyFitnessPal app is. And this is just the free version that we’re talking about.
What do you get with MyFitnessPal premium?
MyFitnessPal is great to count your calories. But it also offers workout routines, recipes, and detailed plans to follow, which are mostly available for premium users only. So, is it worth paying the $9.99/month or $49.99/year subscription?
What we like about MyFitnessPal premium:
Health and Fitness Plans
Premium offers a bigger variety of plans related to fitness and nutrition such as “healthy kickstart” or “total body power.” They can range from one week up to 28 days. Once you enroll into a plan, a couple of tasks will be assigned to you daily.
It doesn’t just tell you how much to eat and which exercise to follow. The checklist would be filled with articles, recipes and ideas to educate you on how to adjust your habits and actually achieve your goal.
More Workout Routines and Recipes
Many premium workout routines are available for you to watch, categorized to meet everybody’s preference such as “quick home workout” or “yoga for everyone”. It also provides you with an estimate calorie burn for each video.
Premium also gives access to a great number of recipes with their full nutritional information. While you scroll through, you can save whatever you like in your bookmarks for later. They are also categorized specifically such as “immune support” or “less than 300 calories”
What we don’t like about MyFitnessPal premium:
Not Enough Plans
Even though the free plans are very limited, the premium ones are only around 20, so you don’t really have many more options. You also can’t add more than 1 plan at the same time. So you have to choose whether your focus is on nutrition or on fitness.
No Search Engine for Workouts & Recipes
Surprisingly, the more workouts or recipes you have, the more confusing it may be. There is no search engine to look for a certain routine or food recipe. Everything is displayed on the explore page, making you scroll through different categories in order to find something you like.
Fixed Serving Size
If you decide to create a recipe one day, you may need your math skills for that. Because serving size of recipe is fixed and quantity of ingredients cannot be adjusted… (don’t we all love a little math problem when making a sweet potato ‘pi’)
Besides all of the pros and cons, MyFitnessPal premium also offers extra small features that may highly impact the success of achieving your goals, such as:
- A home screen widget to keep an eye on your goals
- Setting macronutrient goals by gram or percentage
- Exporting your nutrition and fitness data
- Breaking down macronutrient for every meal you log
- Setting calorie goals per meal not just per day
And most importantly, it’s ad free!
Is MyFitnessPal premium version worth it?
The free version is super limited when it comes plans, workouts and recipes. But in the end, it comes back to the purpose of why you are downloading this app.
If you just need:
- An easy and quick way to count your calories
- A home feed filled with blogs to motivate and educate you
- A community that you can share your progress with
Then the free version is more than enough to do the job!
I would only recommend the premium version for the people who really want to dig deep into the world of health and nutrition.
At the end of the day, this is not just a weight loss application. MyFitnessPal is a supportive and educating community. A database for millions of foods. Most of all, a virtual motivator to making better choices for your body and committing to a healthy lifestyle.
Yasmin is a former chef and event planner, currently pursuing her degree in Tourism and Hospitality Management, and adding a dash of spice to content writing.