Food Journal: Example of What NOT to Eat

By June 21, 2010 29 Comments

One of the free services I offer to all my clients is analysis of their food journal.  I have talked many times about the importance of a food journal.  Studies show people lose 40% more weight when they write it down.  I recently received this food journal from a female bootcamper of mine who is in her 30’s and is looking to lose a bit of weight, she probably has less than 30 lbs to lose.

If you find this interesting, click here to join me in person on one of my grocery shopping tours.  Each one sells out, so save your spot now.

This food journal is one of the worst I have seen, but many of the same habits she has formed, many of you have formed as well.  So take a look at the food journal and then at the bottom I will share my thoughts.

Friday, June 11

From 6:30 a.m. to lunch

2 glasses of water after boot camp


Grande au lait (3/4 coffee, 1/4 milk) from Starbuck’s, skim milk with one pump of mocha

fruit and yogurt parfait from Einstein’s

small corner of chocolate cake

20 oz. Diet Coke

another small corner of chocolate cake (probably 1 sq. in.)

Lunch through the afternoon

Another fruit and yogurt parfait from Einstein’s

1 Hershey’s kiss

Half of a turkey and spinach sandwich on wheat


Other half of the turkey/spinach sandwich

Cup of plain yogurt


12 oz. Diet Coke


Medium Diet Coke at the movies

Saturday, June 12


1 glass of water

2 pieces of 40-calorie toast with jelly

fruit/yogurt parfait from Einstein’s



Cafe au lait with one pump mocha

another banana


Lean Cuisine chicken quesadilla


Nonfat banana yogurt


2 cans of Diet Coke

Large coffee with cream and sugar


Kashi Chicken Pomodoro frozen dinner


100-calorie microwave popcorn

3 glasses Diet Rite

Sunday, June 13

Fruit/yogurt parfait–made at home

-1/2 cup lowfat yogurt

-4 strawberries

-1/4 cup blueberries

-2 TBSP granola


16 oz. Diet Coke

Lunch–2 slices of greens pizza–made at home from Weight Watchers recipe

-Crust made from a mix

-Topping = 1 bunch swiss chard, chopped garlic, tomato, onion– cooked in 1 TBSP olive oil

1 1/2 cups reduced-fat monterey jack cheese

Mid-afternoon–12 oz. cafe au lait with skim milk and one pump mocha

16 oz. coffee (about 7/8 coffee and 1/8 hot chocolate from PDQ)

Baby carrots and hummus

Supper–1 1/2 bowls of minestrone—made at home

(Carrots, onion, garlic, celery, potato, pancetta, zucchini, tomatoes, cannellini beans—cooked in 1 TBSP olive oil and simmered in vegetable stock)

2 pieces of 40-calorie multigrain toast with Promise margarine

Evening–Water with lemon/lime

100-calorie microwave popcorn

Monday, June 14

Water after boot camp

Fruit/yogurt parfait–same as yesterday with a 1/2 banana added in

Mid-morning–Tall (12 oz.) cafe au lait w/skim milk and one pump mocha

Lunch–2 slices greens pizza–same as yesterday

Carrots and hummus

1/2 banana

Mid-afternoon-100-calorie microwave popcorn


Chamomile tea w/soy milk


Weight Watchers Caramel Mini-Bar (70 calories)

Supper-Grilled chicken with roasted potatoes and broccoli (Applebee’s)

3 cups of coffee with creamer and sugar

Evening–Weight Watchers caramel mini-bar

100-calorie microwave popcorn


Tuesday, June 15

Before boot camp–banana

After bootcamp–Water

Fruit/yogurt parfait–same ingredients as yesterday

Weight Watchers caramel mini-bar

3 cups of coffee w/cream and sugar

Lunch–2 slices of greens pizza–same as yesterday

1/2 banana

During the afternoon–Small (12 oz.) coffee from PDQ–4/5 coffee, 1/5 hot chocolate

Weight Watchers caramel mini-bar

Three 8 oz. glasses of Diet Pepsi

100-calorie microwave popcorn

2 slices greens pizza

Piece of Weight-Watchers coconut candy

Supper–Bowl of minestrone-from the same batch made on Sunday

2 pieces of 40-calorie multigrain toast with Promise margarine

Evening–small (12 oz.) cafe au lait–1/2 coffee, 1/2 skim milk, w/one pump mocha

100-calorie microwave popcorn


Water after boot camp

Fruit/yogurt parfait–same as yesterday


16 oz. Diet Coke

Lunch–bowl of minestrone—same batch as yesterday

2 pieces 40-calorie multigrain toast w/Promise margarine

Weight Watchers mini-caramel bar

8-oz. glass of Diet Pepsi

Mid-afternoon–100-calorie microwave popcorn

2 glasses of Diet Pepsi

Supper–Caprese sandwich (fresh mozzarella, spinach, basil, tomato, aioli on some kind of white bread–went out to eat)

black bean succotash

2 cups of coffee with cream

Evening–Small cafe au lait w/skim milk and one pump of mocha


Fruit/yogurt parfait–same as yesterday

Mid-morning—3 cups of diet hot chocolate (25 calories each)

Weight Watchers mini-caramel bar

Small cafe au lait w/skim milk and one pump of mocha

Another cup of coffee with cream

Lunch–bowl of minestrone–same batch as yesterday

whole wheat bun with margarine

diet hot chocolate

Mid-afternoon–100-calorie microwave popcorn

Dinner–fruit/yogurt parfait–same as before

Evening–cafe au lait with skim milk & one pump mocha

Here was my response

Thanks for the food journal this will help me immensely… My job is to give you the most honest truth and give suggestions so here I go 🙂

This is one of the worst food journals I have ever seen. You have an extreme addiction towards caffeine and fake sugar. You barely eat any protein. You have an incredible amount of carbs and sugar. The yogurt parfaits (from Einsteins) are awful for you… check out the nutritional value on one of those. You should NEVER eat margarine (just throw that away).

There are very few things that are good here is a few:

plain yogurt

homemade soup

All the food you eat is highly processed, there is very little natural unprocessed food that you are eating.

Here are my immediate recommendations:

-Search on my site for amber’s and abby’s eating plans and follow them.

-Get at least 100 grams of protein

-Ideally eliminate all diet soda and other fake sugars (at least reduce to once per day)

-Get rid of as much of your caffeine dependence as possible

Drink at least a gallon of water

-Stop your Starbucks runs

-Eat more butter, coconut oil, and olive oil

-Eat more dark leafy greens

-Keep doing a good job eating berries, they are lower glycemic compared to the very high sugar bananas

That is enough stuff for now… I will be doing some more grocery tours within the next month… I highly encourage you to sign up for one when I announce it.

Thanks! The good news is you are doing pretty much everything wrong, so your body will respond so well once you make the changes… Not just from a weight loss point, but from a health standpoint. You will greatly decrease your risk for heart disease and cancers.  Your body won’t rely so much on caffeine to get you through the day, and your body will begin to detox when eating cleaner.  For the next couple weeks your body will most likely have bad headaches, your breath might be bad, and your sweat might smell worse as the toxins and chemicals are getting flushed out.

Question: Does anyone have any questions or suggestions for this person?  Or stories about your experience with changing to more natural foods?