There have been quite a few fearsome predictions about people of the future bound to their computer chairs, with their muscles atrophied and movements avoided. This vision of the future was ruined when computers went mobile. Today our mobile devices assist us in getting in the good shape. MyFitnessPal’s Calorie Tracker is just about that. Functionality 9/10 When you want to get slimmer, to gain some weight or to keep your current condition, you should control your calories incoming and speRead full review
Calorie Counter Review: Gotta Get It Going
There have been quite a few fearsome predictions about people of the future bound to their computer chairs, with their muscles atrophied and movements avoided. This vision of the future was ruined when computers went mobile. Today our mobile devices assist us in getting in the good shape. MyFitnessPal’s Calorie Tracker is just about that.
When you want to get slimmer, to gain some weight or to keep your current condition, you should control your calories incoming and spending. That’s what MyFitnessPal Calorie Counter app is for. The principle it’s based on is simple: you note all your activity and your nutrition, and, accounting your statistics, control your lifestyle.
The app and the service are designed to make this process as simple as possible. The most impressing thing is MyFitnessPal’s database with 6+ million food positions. For each position there is data on the calories this food contains, as well as how much fat, protein and carbohydrate it contains. It may be dull to enter these names and numbers manually, so there is built-in barcode scanner you can use to enter the data in one shot. The scanner recognizes both global products (like Coca Cola) and products made for local markets. And if you run into some product new to MyFitnessPal, you can add the data manually and thus contribute to database building process.
Add your food you had for breakfast, for lunch, for dinner and in between. Enter the name and the quantity in special forms. The app gets connected to MyFitnessPal database to count its energy.
There is also a special section for your recipes and frequent foods, so you can just select it from there instead of manual input.
Another side of your lifestyle is your physical activity. You can enter your exercises manually or trust your fitness accessories recognizing your activity types. The service is first of all designed for connecting with specialized fitness devices, but you can as well make your Calorie Counter watch your smartwatch data.
If you have an Apple Watch, you can track your activity directly with it. It’s a bit trickier with Android Wear or other smartwatches for Android; you’ll have to use Google Fit service as an intermediate connection between your device and Calorie Counter.
The app also stores and displays the stats of your success, so you can visually estimate the efficiency of your efforts. Each day you can create a note describing your experience (r explaining your condition change and read it later.
Last but not least: the app is social. You can fill in your profile (upload a photo, enter name), add friends from other social networks to your list, share your achievements on MyFitnessPal account or other pages (Twitter, Facebook and so on). The developers suppose it will motivate its users to work harder.
The app’s design is first of all informative and logical. There are sections for your nutrition and your physical activity. The app’s interface is translated into most popular languages, so you won’t get lost in translation.
The only thing to complain about is the main menu traditionally hidden behind the left margin, too overloaded and complicated. But if you dig a bit deeper, it will take you days or even hours to make it all out.
It takes some time to get used to it, especially if you consume self-made food not listed in its database as it is. Yes, you’ll have to calculate the calories by ingredients and use the most precise scale to measure it, or switch to the recipes the database already has.
The app is designed to control your nutrition, so when you get close to the limits you have set, it warns you that you have consumed nearly enough of calories, fats, proteins or carbohydrates.
The app supports full data exchange with various popular services like Strava, Google Fit, Fitbit and so on.
Unfortunately, sometimes it takes two or more attempts to get connected to the server. Not that the app refuses to work offline, but cloud connection is crucial for your experience. After this, you’ll have to re-enter your login and password.
Cross-platform use 8/10
The app is available for the two major platforms (Android and iOS), though MyFitnessPal has dropped the support for Windows version in August 2016, and Calorie Counter download for WP is no more available. The decision was caused by lack of popularity and technical issues with the app. So there’s another reason to choose your side between the great two.
The free version of Calorie Counter app is fully functional, but still, it constantly shows ads in the bottom of the screen and lacks Premium set of features connected to your account instead of the app. Premium account removes ads and grants you 24/7 personal support by human assistants (in English only). It also enhances the app's functionality by adding microelements data, CSV export of your logs and food analysis. As Premium features affect your interaction with MyFitnessPal servers, there’s no way to get them hacked.
The Premium ads appear almost on each tab, it’s hard not to notice them. It will cost you $9.95/month or $49.95/year if you buy a yearly subscription. Is it worth it? Maybe if you control your diet you’ll save much more on your food expenses.
The Bottom Line
This food calorie counter app can do a great job for you, but it will not do it instead of you. There’s no magic; if you want to get fit, it takes sweating a bit. But this app will make your sweating more efficient and more pleasant. It motivates you to work and makes the process trendy and fun.
The app is meant for those seriously concerned about health and fitness, so its tricky and complicated interface hides a large pack of features to help you with keeping in shape.
Pros : Rich functionality;
Reminders when you’re approaching your daily limit;
Most features available for free.
Cons : Unstable authorization;
Tricky connection with Androidcompatible wearables.
Cross-platform use 4.0
Average : 4.3