Using The Diet Planner

The first thing you see when you open the Diet Planner is a page with a link to the FAQs. The FAQs provide detailed instructions on how to use the Planner to create and store meals.

To read the Diet Planner FAQs:

Click Here

To go to the Diet Planner:

Click Here

To illustrate how the Diet Planner works, we'll continue with the example we used in Chapter 2 for a 200 lb. person, using the same values for calories and macronutrients we originally calculated with the Meal Planner: 3636 kcal/day, and 22% protein, 48% carbohydrate, and 30% fat.

To create a diet, click the "Create New Diet" button. On the set up page, you'll need to:

• Choose whether to make the diet "Public" (visible to other members) or "Private" (visible only to the user)

• Select how each day will be ordered. Each day can be given a date, or a title (i.e., "Day 1," "Day 2," etc.)

• Enter a daily calorie goal (3636)

• Enter a "Macronutrient Split Goal." Macronutrient splits are the percentages of the total calories from protein, carbs, and fat (22% protein, 48% carbs, and 30% fat)

Details such as the calorie goal, macronutrient targets and body weight are not fixed, but can be changed as you proceed.

The Diet Planner also provides a space for notes or other details about the diet. Clicking on "Save Diet" completes the process. Now it's ready to use for meal planning and tracking.

Each new line in a meal has a drop down list of foods. When you choose a food from the list, the number of calories and grams of protein, carbs, and fats are automatically added. The basic list of foods is limited, but users can customize the list by adding their personal favorites. Click "Add" to enter the food into the meal you're creating.

Using the values we calculated for a 200 lb. person in the previous chapter, we'll use the Diet Planner to create a meal that contains approximately 606 calories, 33.3 g protein, 72.7 g carbohydrate, and 20.2 g fat.

The simplest way to build a meal is to start with the main protein source. Choose a protein food and enter a portion size that gives a value less than the final amount you want for the full meal, since other foods will add some protein as well.

Step 1: Start with a protein source.

Create New Meal

Load Meal From Favorites

#

Food

Calories

Protein

Carbs

Fat

PROTEINS

75

32%

5.33%

62.67%

PROTEINS

48

58.5%

3.3%

38.2%

>

1 1

Select Food

v

0

0g

0g

0g

ADD

Total:

123

18g

1g

5g

Actual Nutrition Intake:

58.5%

3.3%

38.2%

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

In this example, adding egg whites to a whole egg increases the protein content, and decreases the fat content.

Next, put in other foods that might be needed to create an entree. In this case, we're creating an veggie omelette or scramble, so to complete it, we'll use a couple teaspoons of olive oil for cooking.

Step 2: Add foods needed for cooking

Create New Meal

Load Meal From Favorites

#

Food

Calories

Protein

Carbs

Fat

PROTEINS

75

32%

5.33%

62.67%

*

PROTEINS

48

58.5%

3.3%

38.2%

>

FATS

90

33.8%

1.9%

64.3%

1 1

Select Food

v

0

0g

0g

0g

ADD

Total:

213

18g

1g

15g

Actual Nutrition Intake:

33,8%

1.9%

64.3%

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

Along with some veggies:

Create New Meal

Load Meal From Favorites

Create New Meal

Load Meal From Favorites

#

Food

Calories

Protein

Carbs

Fat

PROTEINS

32% 5.33% 62.67% ^

PROTEINS

48

58.5%

3.3%

38.2%

*

FATS

90

33.8%

1.9%

64.3%

*

0.5

cup, Bell Pepper (raw)

VEGETABLES (fiber)

9.4%

58.8%

*

1 1

Select Food

v

0

0g

0g

0g

ADD

Total:

233

18.5g

5.5g

15g

Actual Nutrition Intake:

33,8% 1.9% 64.3%

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

We'll need to start adding some carbs, so to complete the entree, we can fold it into a 100% whole wheat flour tortilla and top w/some salsa.

Step 3: Add foods to complete the entree.

Create New Meal

Load Meal From Favorites

#

Food

Calories

Protein

Carbs

Fat

PROTEINS

75

32%

5.33%

62.67%

JX

3

Large Egg White(s)

48

12g

0g

0g

PROTEINS

58.5%

3.3%

38.2%

2

tsp, Olive Oil

90

0g

0g

10g

FATS

33.8%

1.9%

64.3%

VEGETABLES (fiber)

9.4%

58.8%

CONDIMENTS

8

30.7%

12.4%

56.9%

1

100% Whole Wheat Flour Tortilla

185

5g

30g

5g

J*

CARBOHYDRATES

22.1%

35.2%

42.7%

1 1

0

0g

0g

0g

Select Food v

ADD

Total:

426

23.5g

37.5g

20g

Actual Nutrition Intake:

33,8%

1.9%

64.3%

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

At this point, you consider what you have, and what you might need to complete the meal. In this particular example, the fat quota has been met, but we still need a little more protein and carbs. Some nonfat milk and a serving of fruit will do the trick:

Step 4: Add foods as needed to complete the meal.

Create New Meal

Load Meal From Favorites

#

Food

Calories

Protein

Carbs

Fat

PROTEINS

75

32%

5.33%

62.67%

>

PROTEINS

48

58.5%

3.3%

38.2%

*

FATS

90

33.8%

1.9%

64.3%

X

VEGETABLES (fiber)

9.4%

58.8%

J*

CONDIMENTS

8

30.7%

12.4%

56.9%

J*

CARBOHYDRATES

185

22.1%

35.2%

42.7%

>

LIQUIDS

100

25.5%

39.9%

34.6%

*

FRUIT

84

22.6%

47.5%

29.9%

*

1 1

0

0g

0g

0g

Select Food v

ADD

Total:

610

34.5g

72.5g

20g

Actual Nutrition Intake:

22.6%

47.5%

29.9%

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

ADD THIS MEAL AND CREATE NEXT

We were aiming for 606 calories, 33.3 g protein, 72.7 g carbs and 20.2 g fat. We ended up with 610 calories, 34.5 g protein, 72.5 g carbs and 20 g fat. This is about as dead-on as it's possible to get.

Is it necessary to get within 5 -10 calories, or a gram or two of your macro-nutrient targets? No: this is just an example and is meant to demonstrate that it can be done, using reasonable portions of food (not 0.761 tablespoons of flax oil or 0.469 cups of oatmeal) within the context of normal meals. There's some room for error.

It will take a bit of practice to get it right. That's ok: the idea is to think ahead about what you're eating to ensure that you provide your body with a relatively steady supply of critical nutrients throughout the day, without eating too much or too little at any one meal. It's precisely this ability to "try on" different foods and amounts in advance that makes the Diet Planner so useful.

The Diet Planner can also be used to track the changes in your body com position. There is a text area for typing detailed notes at the bottom of each page in the planner, as well as text fields you can use to enter data on your weight and body fat percentage. As you gain (or lose), the Planner will plot a graph of the changes in your weight and lean body mass over time.

One of the most valuable features of the Diet Planner is the ability to customize it with your own foods and recipes. Rather than force you to search through thousands of different foods, you can add your favorites to the list of basic foods already there.

To enter your own foods into the Planner, you need to know the grams of protein, carbs, and fat in a serving of the food. One of the best places to find this information is also available to you in the Members' Area: the Food Database.

Using the Food Database

When you open the Food Database, the first thing you see is the search screen, part of which is reproduced in Fig. 8 on the next page.

The Food Database contains information on over 50,000 different foods. In addition to basic food items, there is also an extensive list of commercial packaged products and menu items from popular restaurant chains. You can search by product categories, or by typing a food item into the search box and clicking "Go". The full list of categories includes:

Fast Food Restaurants, Eating Out Frozen & Packaged Meals & Pizzas, Tofu Alcohol (Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cocktails) Cakes, Muffins, Pastries, Pies, Baking Drinks (Sports, Energy & Meal Shakes, Soda, Coffee, Tea) Snacks, Popcorn, Potato Chips, Granola Bars, Sports Bars Cream, Fats, Oils, Cheese, Dips, Spreads Breakfast Cereals, Grains, Rice, Spaghetti Soups, Sauces, Dressings, Condiments Candy, Chocolate, Cough Drops Eggs, Meats, Sausages, Deli Meats Chicken,Turkey, Fish, Shellfish Ice Cream, Ices, Frozen Yogurt Milk, Soy Drinks, Rice Drinks, Yogurt Puddings, Desserts, Jell-O, Pancakes, Waffles

• Nuts, Seeds, Fruits, Vegetables, Juices

• Breads, Bagels, Rolls, Crackers, Cookies

The Food Database may not cover everything, but it comes close!

Figure 1: The top half of the Food Database Search Screen. Foods can be searched by category (hyperlinks to sub-categories shown in blue), or by using the search box.

Search:

Go m

Fast Foods, Restaurants, Eating Out

Deli, Sandwiches, Wraps Fast-Food Chains & Restaurants Restaurant & International Foods

Alcohol (Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cocktails)

Drinks (Sports, Energy S Meal Shakes, Soda, Coffee, Tea)

Cream, Fats, Oils, Cheese, Dips, Spreads

Frozen & Packaged Meals & Pizzas, Tofu

Alcohol (Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cocktails)

Beer, Ale Cider, Wine Liqueurs

Liquors, Coolers, Cocktails

Drinks (Sports, Energy S Meal Shakes, Soda, Coffee, Tea)

Coffee, Hot Chocolate, Cocoa Frozen Carbonated Beverages Nutrition, Energy Shakes & Drinks Soft Drinks, Soda Tea & Iced Tea

Cream, Fats, Oils, Cheese, Dips, Spreads

Cheese

Cream & Creamers

Fats, Spreads, Oils, Butter

Snack & Cheese Dips, Spreads

Cakes, Muffins, Pastries, Pies, Baking

Frozen & Packaged Meals & Pizzas, Tofu

Canned & Packaged Meals Frozen Entrees & Meals Soy & Tofu Vegetarian Foods

Cakes, Muffins, Pastries, Pies, Baking

Cake, Cookie & Dessert Mixes Cakes, Pastries, Croissants Donuts

Frostings, Baking Ingredients Muffins, Sweet Rolls Pies & Tarts

Snacks, Popcorn, Potato Chips, Granola Bars, Sports Bars

Breakfast Bars

Granola, Sport & Diet Bars

Popcorn

Potato Chips, Pretzels, Tortilla Chips Snacks, Trail Mix, Jerky

Snacks, Popcorn, Potato Chips, Granola Bars, Sports Bars

Breakfast Cereals, Grains, Rice, Spaghetti

Breakfast Cereal

So, for example, if you went to a restaurant and ordered the lobster, you could use the Food Database to get the info you need to add it to your diet in the Diet Planner. You could either search the category "Shellfish - Fresh, Frozen & Canned" (not shown), or type "lobster" directly into the search box. The information returned by the database is summarized in Fig. 9

Figure 2: The nutrition information returned for "Lobster, Northern, cooked, moist heat." The calories and nutrients for a 6 oz. portion were calculated by selecting "oz" from the drop down box, and entering "6" in the number field.

Nutrition Facts oz

Calories 167

(Kilojoules 698)

Daily Value

Daily Value

Total Fat

1 g

2%

Saturated Fat

0.2 g

1%

Cholesterol

123 mg

41%

Sodium

648 mg

27%

Total Carbohydrates

2.2 g

1%

Dietary Fiber

0 g

0%

Sugars

0 g

Protein

34.9 g

Calcium

103.9 mg

Potassium

599.8 mg

Note: a dash indicates no data is available

Note: a dash indicates no data is available

The nutrition information returned by the Database can be scaled to any desired portion size by selecting the units from the drop down box, and entering a number into the adjacent field.

The ability to scale portion sizes also makes the Database a handy tool for determining the total calories and macronutrients in your favorite recipes. Add the macronutrient totals for a standard portion into the Diet Planner and you're set.

The bottom line: using both the Food Database and the Diet Planner make the processes of planning and tracking your diet much simpler. And for my money, anything that makes life simpler is a good deal!

To open the Diet Planner:

Click Here

To open the Food Database:

Click Here

To make life even simpler: my moderators and I created a series of model diets for 1500 - 6000 calories/day using the Diet Planner. These have been transferred to Excel spreadsheets that you can download and use as templates for creating your own diet plan.

To go to the Sample Diet download page:

Click Here

Resources Return to T.O.C

It's great to have a list of foods to shop for, and basic equipment to buy for your kitchen. But if you don't know what to make, or can't boil water, you might need some extra help. The following resources can help you out:

• The recipe section in the BBR Members' Area. There are a bunch of great recipes there, with instructions and full nutritional breakdown.

To check out the recipe section:

Click Here

The free e-book,"Tasty Fat Loss and Muscle Building Recipes"is also available to all BBR members on the download page in the Members' Area.

To download "Tasty Fat Loss and Muscle Building Recipes":

Click Here

"Gourmet Nutrition" by John Berardi and John Williams is loaded with great muscle-building recipes and sound nutritional advice. It's available as an e-book from John's site.

To purchase a copy of "Gourmet Nutrition":

Click Here

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