Nutrition facts are essential for health, diet planning and weight loss. Generally, people pay closest attention to calories, fat and carbohydrates. Diabetics may note sugar content, and people watching their salt intake will pay close attention to the sodium content of things they eat. Some foods, such as most fruits and vegetables, have no nutrition fact labels. But this information often is found in a reference guide or website.
Things You'll Need
- Nutrition information for foods and recipes frequently consumed
- Calculator (optional)
- Excel spreadsheet or charting materials
Create a list of all foods commonly eaten. Include foods eaten individually, such as vegetables or fruits, as well as recipes you often use. Organize the list by meals (breakfast foods, lunches, dinners, snacks), food type (vegetables, meats, grains) or alphabetically.
Rewrite the list to include the necessary nutrition information from the foods you have chosen. For example, if you are concerned about calories and fat, write down the calories and fat for each food, and include the standard portion size. Rewrite your recipe list items, and include serving size with the nutrition information. If the recipes do not have this information already, calculate the nutrition information based on the individual ingredients (divided by the number of servings) or input the recipe ingredients into a nutrition calculator online.
Create a spreadsheet on the computer or make a chart by hand. List the food items in the first column, serving size in the second column and in the third and subsequent columns the nutritional categories (calories, fat, sodium, carbohydrates, sugar, fiber and protein). Fill in the columns with the data from your list.