FUN App To Track Carbs On A Chart (MyFitnessPal Hack)

If you don’t actively keep track of calories, protein, fat, and carbs (net) then you may not be experiencing the success you’d like to see on the low carb diet! I’ve been eating low carb for more than 3 years and used to just “eyeball it” – except in the beginning when I tracked it on paper until I figured out my “safety zones”.

I decided to set up MyFitnessPal.com, specifically with the Keto Configuration (see below), as I’m working hard on switching my carb/protien/fat percentages. What an eye opener! I lost 6.4 pounds the first week I dramatically increased my healthy fats! My goals are: Net Carbs 5%, Protein 25%, Fat 70% (I don’t track calories).

If you’re looking for good Atkins apps, or an app to track carbs on a chart easily, this is the IDEAL setup! ;-)


HOW TO SET UP MYFITNESSPAL FOR THE LOW CARB DIET

1. Create an account at: http://www.myfitnesspal.com

Next you’ll want to set up your “macros”:

Go to: Home -> Goals -> Change Goals
Select “Custom” and click continue
I have mine set up as 70% Fat, 25% Protein and 5% Carbs.
You can set your calories to whatever you please – I ignore calories anyway. ;-)

You also need to add Fiber as a column to track so the script can calculate Net Carbs for you:

Go to: Food -> Settings
Add Fiber to your list of nutrients to track. Make sure you at least have carbs, fiber, fat and protein selected. These are what you need to track for a low carb or ketogenic diet.

2. Download this addon for Firefox

- or this addon for Chrome

3. After installing the plugin, click here to install it.

It only takes a few minutes to set it all up, and then you’ll get a nice graphic pie chart like the one you see above! Note: the script only works online, not on your mobile app, but you can use the app to log foods on the go.

To see examples of my results, and the foods I ate, see this Two Day LCHF Food Journal.

“Carb creep” can really get you if you’re not tracking! I found this to be very eye-opening. I do love the layout. It inspired me to make a few healthy changes. My coffee is the main culprit so I’m going to wean myself down to black. I also never knew coffee had SO much potassium… Wow.

TIP: Put in your foods BEFORE you prepare or eat them to make sure of the carb count, and to stay on track with your ratios. ;-)

IMPORTANT NOTE: MyFitnessPal is set up for low fat / low calorie diets, which is why we use the “keto hack” above to be able to track net carbs. Even if you put in all your measurements, you still want to eat only 20 net carbs a day (max) instead of whatever MFP suggests. I ignore calories and other factors, and use it to track my exercise, water, net carbs, and fat/protein ratios. It’s great for accountability to all those things AND for tweaking to make sure you’re on track to burn fat and enjoy the health benefits of ketosis.

Questions, personal experiences? Share by leaving a comment below!

Are you tracking all of your foods??

Which app/tool are you using, and what percentages are YOU shooting for?

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28 Responses to FUN App To Track Carbs On A Chart (MyFitnessPal Hack)

  1. Jennifer says:

    I used this app and info a while back but it was so much work to try and figure out the macros for “combo” meals – i.e., anything other than a meat and veg. If I make a “casserole” of some sort (with several ingredients) it was sooooo time consuming to get on Fitday or something similar and try to determine the info… especially problematic because I *never* make a recipe the same way twice! ;)

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Hmm, MyFitnessPal is really simple. Maybe if you just jotted down the ingredients as you’re making things and then just add them all in separately (if you have to) at the end of the day – that could work. :D

      I rarely cook, and when I do it’s super simple stuff – as you can see throughout the blog here. The sausage & eggs I had yesterday were take-out, and the Ribeye was leftover from dinner out the night before. So I basically just boiled eggs, and boiled a can of chicken broth, yesterday. :P

      Today I made tuna salad with eggs, mayo, etc and I just put each thing in separately.

  2. Barbara Marlow says:

    I’ve used MFP a few times in the past and always end up frustrated, causing me to delete the app. After reading this post, I want to give it another try. I entered the percentages for fat, protein, and carbs. Am I supposed to just IGNORE the calories part of the equation? It is telling me 1,320 calories for my weight and amount of weight I want to lose. Doing low carb with higher fat, I am thinking it is impossible to stick that that calorie amount.

  3. Michael Schultz says:

    Ohhh this post inspired a new app development idea. Thank you! :D

  4. shirley says:

    Lynn, hate to sound ignorant, but how do you get this app? I have map and can’t figure out how to get the chart. Any advice would be appreciated.

  5. Debi J says:

    I’ve used MyFitnessPal for a few years now but didn’t even realize you could set it up based on Fats, Proteins and Carbs! I love it! I have the few things I cook set up as recipes so they’re simple to add. And I use the barcode thing as often as possible… it amazes me how many options they have entered. I can’t even remember the last time there was something I added that wasn’t already there!!

  6. frances shanks says:

    Im confused…Is this an app for the computer or the phone? I went to the site and it said something about going to another site by another person for an updated version…

  7. Heide says:

    Is there a way to set up MFP to calculate ‘net carbs’? I changed my profile (great advice, thanks!) but I can’t figure out if there is a way to subtract fiber from carbs to equal net carbs. Like when I enter my Quest bar it says 24 carbs but there are 19g of fiber in that bad boy…and with the 24g of carbs it already put me over my 5% for the day. Any advice?

    Thanks!

  8. Jada says:

    In my experience it does not subtract the fiber from total carbs to give the net carb. Also it rounds up the carbs. So if you ate something with .5 carbs it recorded it as 1 carb.

  9. Trish says:

    I managed to set up My Fitness Pal with most of the settings – thanks for the ‘how to’! But, I cannot get to the links for any of the scripts to put in ‘Net Carbs” – I get a ‘problem loading page’ error – that it was taking too long, and it timed out. Any other hacks out there, or alternate places to get the script?

    I am excited to be part of this challenge,, but need all the help I can get!!

    Trish

  10. noreen Mendola says:

    Tried several times to install the plug ins for MVP listed above and it didn’t work. I may just end up using Spark ‘ s people and add my own foods with net carbs

  11. Pingback: Two Day LCHF Food Journal | Low Carb Diet Tips for Busy People

  12. Barb says:

    Do these values apply to everyone, no matter age or weight? 72% fat / 23% protein / 5% carbs

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Hi Barb,

      Typical goals for a ketogenic low carb diet are 70/25/5 – that’s 70% healthy fats, 25% protein, and 5% carbs. I actually shoot for around 80% in healthy fats as I find it makes me feel better and lose weight more easily (post hysterectomy).

      That said, there are no standards. Some people just eat lower carb, some eat low carb (20 net carbs a day), some eat keto (higher fat than a typical LC diet), some are doing Atkins. To each their own. You have to figure out what works for you.

      But the 70/25/5 ratios have worked VERY well for everyone that was trying to lose weight more quickly OR improve their health (heart, diabetes, chronic pain, etc).

  13. Lynn Terry says:

    Q: “I get the percentages…. but 70/25/5% but of what amount…… there has to be a top figure to find out 70/25/5% right?”

    A: Of your total daily calories. If you use the app, you’ll put in everything you eat/drink throughout the day, and it will track your calories, fat, protein, carbs, etc. You can adjust as you go to “tweak” your percentages or ratios.

    See my two day food journal that has screenshots of my results for each day: http://www.travelinglowcarb.com/4660/two-day-lchf-food-journal/

    • Barb says:

      How does one figure your calories; especially with broken Metabolism… I had it tested and it has me at 860 kc….. ridiculous I know and I also know that we don’t count calories but again, to figure the %’s we need a number…..:)

      • Lynn Terry says:

        Hi Barb,

        The percentages will be based on whatever your total calories are, no matter if they are low are high. Yesterday I had over 2,000 calories and the day before it was just around 1500 – but my percentages were the same and I was below 20 Net Carbs both days, which is what matters.

        You can see those meals and those stats in the link I shared above your comment earlier.

        Try putting in 2,000 calories as your goal, but just pretty much ignore it at first. Start with high fat (70-80%) and below 20 net carbs, and see how you do. The higher percentage of healthy fats made a BIG difference for me after hitting 40 and having a hysterectomy. ;-) *cheers*

  14. Laura says:

    When I click on the link for Chrome it takes me to the Chrome store….which app is the one I should down load?

    • Lynn Terry says:

      Hi Laura,

      The scripts only work online, in Chrome or Firefox browsers, not on your mobile app. You can use the app to log in to your MyFitnessPal account and log foods on the go. But the “keto script” only works online.

  15. Pingback: Ketosis Symptoms & Low Carb Flu Explained | Low Carb Diet Tips for Busy People

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