By: Shannon McHale ’15, CRS Weight/Fitness Supervisor
Have you ever stared at a product in the grocery store, debating whether or not it was actually good for you? Are you often overwhelmed by the sheer volume of allegedly “healthy” options? Do you feel like you need a nutritional Magellan (or at least a very nutrition-savvy friend) to help you navigate your grocery trips? Enter this week’s Wellness App …
This Week’s App: Fooducate
To use Fooducate, all you do is open the app and scan the barcode or search for whatever food you’re considering. Fooducate will tell you not only the nutritional info for that product, but will give it a grade – A through D.
According to the app’s website, Fooducate “rewards minimally processed, nutrient dense foods with the highest grades.” Translation: Fooducate takes into account whether the food is actually healthy for you, or if it was fortified through processing (like an apple vs. Special K).
The app also has some neat features like a diet tracker and daily tips that push it past being just another boring nutrition database.
We think Fooducate is an awesome way to learn about the foods that you’re putting into your body. But, we also think it’s important to make sure you’re actually learning about them and not relying on an app to do all the thinking for you.
Our suggestion: use Fooducate as a tool for gaining some nutritional know-how, and use that know-how to make better choices with or without the app.
We also suggest making use of the tracking feature (even if only for a few days) to get an idea of what you’re putting in your body and to see if maybe you could benefit from some diet changes.
The only major downside to Fooducate is that some of the extra features don’t come with the free version – and the paid one costs $4.99. We say download the free version, use it for the food analyses, and shell out the five bucks if you feel like you’d get a lot of use out of the diet tracker or comparison tools.