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Measure MyPlate progress

By January 23, 2013

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USDA SuperTrackerDo you use a food diary? Did you know the US Department of Agriculture has one that incorporates the "MyPlate" guidelines? It's called the SuperTracker and it recently celebrated its first birthday. You can access it online for free and use it to log meals and exercise, as well as look up nutrition info for many foods.

The SuperTracker shares many features with well-known apps and sites like Calorie Count, LoseIt! and MyFitnessPal. There are a couple of key differences. First, it's not an app; you need to log in using an Internet browser (which you could do from a smartphone).

Second, the tracker shows you how your daily diet stacks up against the MyPlate recommendations. That's the colorful bar graph in the screen shot here. Interestingly, you also get data on how many "empty" calories you are consuming. That could come as a shock!

Similarly, the physical activity log tracks not only your activity, but how it matches up with guidelines for weekly aerobic and muscle-strengthening goals. You can use SuperTracker without creating a profile, but doing so allows you to personalize your goals (such as number of minutes exercised and number of calories consumed) and save your favorite foods for quicker re-entry in the future.

Image: US Department of Agriculture

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