What is a Food Diary?
A , also known as a food journal, is a tracker where you write down all of the food and drinks you’ve consumed within the day or week. Depending on the physician asking you to document your intake, a food diary may include the following:
- Date and time of your meal (e.g. April 4, 2023, Monday at 8:00 AM)
- A list of what you’re drinking or eating (e.g. coffee, bacon, eggs, toast)
- The corresponding amount of the food or drink (e.g. 16. oz of a latte, 3 strips of bacon, 2 sunny-side up eggs, 2 toasted pcs. of traditional white bread)
- Where you are eating (e.g. on my work desk, on the kitchen counter, dining table)
- Who you are eating with (e.g. pet, family, friends)
- What you may be doing while eating (e.g. working, watching an episode of a series)
- How you are feeling while or after eating (e.g. happy because I got to enjoy my dessert, sad because I had to drink my lukewarm latte quickly)
There’s no strict format to a food diary and no perfect way to fill it out. However, it is highly recommended that you include the necessary details requested by your physician for whatever purpose.
Speaking of purpose, down below is a list of why physicians ask that their patients have one:
- Helps the patient to be aware of their eating habits and accountable for their food choice
- Helps figure out what food group has been missing in the patient’s diet
- Helps pinpoint which emotions trigger the habit of possible comfort or mindless eating
- Helps identify food intolerances or allergies
- Helps manage weight, whether that’s to lose or gain
How Does this Food Diary Template Work?
Step One. Access and Download the Template
Search for “food diary” in the Carepatron’s template library on the app or website and click download. Alternatively, click the “Download Template” or “Use Template” button above.
Step Two. Personalize
Our Food Diary template is editable. Therefore, you may include prompts that’ll help patients remember details that’ll help you gather data or formulate clinical impressions.
Step Three. Fill Out the Needed Information
Once customized, you may either give it to your patient to fill out or for yourself to fill up on behalf of inpatients, geriatric clients, etc. Begin by writing down the needed patient information: name, contact number, date of birth, e-mail, age, gender, sex, and address.
Step Four. Track What You’re Eat
Don’t forget to give the following reminders to your patients if they will fill it up themselves:
- When tracking what you’re eating, it’s recommended that you write down what you’ve consumed as soon as the meal has concluded and not wait until the start of the next meal or the end of the day because you may forget what you’ve eaten or drank.
- Write comments regarding how you feel, who you’re with, what influences your food choices, etc., either alongside per meal or at the bottom of each daily table.
Food Diary Template Example (Sample)
We’ve created a sample to help you picture how this tool and resource can benefit your practice. There are multiple ways to fill out this template; you may edit and customize this according to the end goal.
When to Use these Food Journal Templates
Though you can use this template for whatever purpose, it should be used:
- When your client is getting back on track after being diagnosed with an eating disorder
- When your client needs help identifying what’s causing a rise or fall in what’s written on their blood test results
- When your client can’t figure out which ingredient they are reacting negatively to, either physically or emotionally
- When your client is tracking their health
Remember that a food journal is a tracker and not the sole resource for diagnosis or a treatment plan. A more accurate clinical impression, diagnosis, or well-designed treatment plan can benefit from further testing, additional consultation, etc., by the client.
Who is this Food Diary Template PDF for?
As mentioned above, the purpose of a food diary varies. Therefore, it can be for everyone, both clients and patients. However, the following practitioners are the ones who are most likely to download a PDF of our free Food Diary template:
- General Practitioners or Physicians, including family doctors who are constantly checking their patients’ health and wellbeing
- Practitioners in geriatric or infant care who manage and implement the meal plans of their patients
- Allergists or Immunologists looking to pinpoint the food allergies of their patient
- Psychologist/Psychiatrist who want to check if their patient’s food is affecting their mental health
- Registered Dietitians
- Nutritional Psychiatrist
- Others: Registered Nutritionists, Nutritional Therapists, Social Workers, Nurses, and Mental Health Nurses
Benefits of a Free Food Diary
As seen above, more than a handful of practitioners can benefit from giving their clients a free food diary they can fill up, making this template versatile and valuable to a wide range of people.
Improves Monitoring Process
By starting with a template instead of a blank sheet of paper or a notes app, patients have prompts and guides that’ll help them note down their intake in a more detailed manner, thus improving the monitoring process.
Though you won’t be starting from scratch, our free food diary template is still editable and customizable right on Carepatron or your local PDF editor. You can request specific details from your patient by adding questions or reminders in any of the blank spaces provided.
The danger of having a notebook or a piece of paper is that the information can be unreadable if the template gets wet. With a template that’s fully digital and accessible on any gadget you have on hand, you can update it whenever and wherever you need. Moreover, our PDF template won’t eat as much storage on your device compared to a separate food diary application.
In some instances, having a food diary can help patients feel empowered because they’ll become aware of their choices and be motivated to make better decisions, such as adding more fruits and vegetables to their diet.
Why use this Food Diary app?
Equip yourself with the means and tools to efficiently handle and accomplish administrative tasks with Carepatron, a leading practice management software in the healthcare industry. By streamlining clinical and business processes, all your focus will be on delivering stellar patient care.
Download our application for free available on desktops, iOs, and Android to access to:
- The food diary template and over 100 more downloadable, printable, and digitally editable PDF templates of tests, surveys, assessments, and more.
- A HIPAA-compliant and secure EHR for your digital notes, medical billings, and client’s medical history.
- Multiple integrated scheduling and telehealth software applications.
- An automated payment system you can set up for your client.
Make Carepatron your go-to app by giving it a try today! Sign up and get all access starting with our free basic plan.