March 25, 2010

You Are What You Eat

We all know that cooking from scratch is better for you in a lot of ways. It saves on groceries since pre-made and pre-packaged foods tend to cost more. And you can know what's in your food and avoid things like corn syrups and extra sodium. It allows you to tailor your consumption to dietary needs. Not to mention that home cooking just plain tastes better.

But have you ever wondered just what you're getting from your recipes? Sometimes it's hard to figure out if you're getting your daily needs. Trying to add up all the nutrition information from each package can drive you crazy. But it's ok, I'm here to help!

Awhile ago my mom shared this site with me called You have to register to use it, but it's well worth it. It offers a multitude of tools and resources, but the main one is recipe analysis. To create a new recipe you use a search function to find your ingredients. It will give you a list of options and you just have to select the closest match. Sometimes being specific will help (such as "granulated sugar" rather than just "sugar").Then you put in the amount of each ingredient. If you would like to save the recipe as a whole, you can add the cooking instructions. Once you are done adding ingredients all you have to do is click "Save & Analyze", which will take you to a page with the full recipe and all the nutritional data you could ever want. It even comes in one of those spiffy nutrition facts labels.By clicking on the ingredient names you can find the nutritional data for that ingredient by itself.

As an example, I filled in the info for my Red Beans & Rice recipe. Based on a 12 serving yield, one serving is 187 calories, 3 grams of fat, 15 mg of cholesterol, and 14 grams of protein. It also provides 3% vitamin A, 6% vitamin C, 6% calcium, and 20% iron.

In addition to that you can find a daily needs calculator, a BMI calculator, and unit converter, recipes, and a multitude of articles and other tools. They even have a section to see what that burger from the Golden Arches is doing for your heart - as well as tons of foods from other fast food restaurants. If you want to learn about food and what you're eating, this is the place to go.

1 comment:

Farm Girl said...

cool Megan, I am going to have to visit this place. You always come up with such interesting stuff.

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