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The 7 Best Calorie Counting Apps 

Jason Hughes
Published by Jason Hughes
Fact checked by Markus Oliver, BHSc FACT CHECKED
Last updated: April 19, 2022

Setting up health goals and living a healthy lifestyle is often the biggest priority on most people’s lists. Thanks to the rise in modern technology, there are now apps that may help us reach our goals to achieve a healthier version of ourselves. Calorie-tracking apps are one of the prime examples of this.

There are various apps on the market that you can use to check your progress. But how can you find the best app to track your calories with so many out there? Don’t worry; we’ve taken that challenge on for you!  Let's look at some of the best apps to keep track of our calorie intake to help us get back in shape.

Why Should I Use a Calorie Counting App?

Many people like to keep tabs on the things they consume. This is crucial, especially if they are on a strict diet plan and want to control their food intake. Aside from doing regular exercise routines, maintaining the proper food intake is essential for a healthy lifestyle.

Because of this, people started have using apps to track calories. They integrate their healthy regime and utilize technology to optimize their fitness journey.

While calorie counting isn't everyone's cup of tea, some people love using an app that tracks calories. This will give them a visual representation of their eating habits and offer insights into their boundaries regarding their food intake.

People at risk of diabetes may also benefit from counting the content of their food portions. It gives them a picture of what they need to consider for their daily intake and the number of portions based on their diet plan needs.

Of course, all apps aren't created equal. With that in mind, let's break down a few of the best apps to track calories on multiple factors.

The Rundown for the Best Calorie Counting Apps

Calorie counters visualize a person's food intake and make monitoring calories easier to manage. They offer an in-depth analysis of your lifestyle habits from your food intake. Aside from that, they provide extensive insight into the food's nutrient quality and compare it to your body's health goals. This method replaces the plain-old process of logging calories using paper and pencil.

The best apps to track calories feature extensive features such as rich food databases, calorie monitoring, nutrient tracking, and comprehensive meal plans. On top of that, apps that provide a significant boost for motivation have extra points. Let's rundown the best apps for counting calories per category.

Best Calorie Counting Apps

Fitbit - Best Tracker-Device Combo

There’s no getting away from it; we need to endure some sacrifices to achieve a healthier version of ourselves. We must endure the temptations of food cravings and are required to dedicate time to workout routines. These things demand a great deal of effort. That's why we will give this slot to Fitbit.

Fitbit trackers monitor all the essential things your body needs to become healthy. This takes food tracking and fitness monitoring to a new level.

Fitbit allows users to manually input their food intake and provides an extensive breakdown of the carb, protein, and fat consumption from the meal you prepare. This feature allows the user to understand better their food choices and their overall impact on their health and body.

Fitbit also provides detailed data about the wearer's vitals, such as heart rate, blood pressure, sleep quality, and more. Just a quick side note, you don't necessarily need to own a Fitbit device. Simply download their app and pair it with your smartphone to do basic tracking, such as your daily steps and other essential functions.

PROS
  • Fitbit app provides you with a quick breakdown of your calorie intake and calories burned. It also accounts for the macronutrients you get from food. The app provides access to quick and healthy recipes according to your fitness program. 
CONS
  • While owning a Fitbit device is unnecessary, you can only access the app's full potential with a paired device. 

Lose It! - Best Free App to Track Calories

Everybody loves free stuff. However, the calorie tracking app, Lose It!, takes free to a whole new level. It is one of the most popular apps to track calories in the market. This app is responsible for trimming down more than 112 million pounds from its collective users around the globe.

Lose It! provides a personalized calorie budget depending on the user's height and weight. It also accounts for age, gender, and preferences when it comes to your meals. On top of that, the platform allows users to share photos of their meals to help other community members with their food choices.

The app can work combined with other devices such as smartphones and other trackers. The Lose It! community also provides extensive support and offers wellness challenges to spice up your health journey. Users can enjoy their premium subscription that offers dedicated healthy plans suitable for their personal needs.

PROS
  • Lose It! works reliably with other fitness and health apps. Their free services also provide a more detailed view of the user's food intake and its overall effect on their body.
CONS
  • Calorie tracking can be time-consuming compared to other tracking apps.

MyFitnessPal - Best Overall Experience

MyFitnessPal is one of the most popular fitness and calorie tracking apps today. With over 200 million users around the globe, they managed to create a comprehensive database of what other people's diets look like. Users will have plenty of healthy options for their food intake, with over 11 million meals in their database.

The platform will do the math for you when it comes to your portion sizes, the associated calories, and the protein content in your food. Users can also utilize the barcode scan to easily log the ingredients they eat.

The annual premium membership offers an extensive breakdown of the user's eating habits, expert support and removes all ad banners within the platform. Seasoned veterans or first-time users may set flexible and personalized health goals tailor-fit for their fitness needs. The app works well with connected devices such as fitness watches and others.

PROS
  • The platform offers a vast collection of food and exercise routines suitable for all kinds of people. The app is also user-friendly, making it one of the most accessible apps to use on the market. 
CONS
  • Individual users can share their food choices with the community. Although the intention is good, the food accuracy may suffer.

Nutritionix Track - Most Simple Calorie Counting App

A comprehensive app for counting calories is good to have. However, some people prefer simpler platforms. If that's what you want, then Nutritionix Track might be your best bet.

Nutritionix Track offers a straightforward approach when it comes to calorie tracking. The platform holds over 948,000 food items in its database with their corresponding nutritional value. Nutritionix Track users can mix common food ingredients within the app and get its overall nutritional value, including the calories, fats, and protein contents. Dietitians widely use this app thanks to this feature.

Pro users can even share their food choices with their trainer or nutritionist, who can provide recommendations about the user's meal choices.

PROS
  • The platform sports an extensive database of ingredients. The app is also easy to use with its straightforward features.
CONS
  • There are a few complaints about difficulties when pairing it with other health and fitness apps. 

WW - Best App for Weight Management

Many people consider WW as the gold standard for weight management. Formerly known as Weight Watchers, the developers utilized the app's strong points and revamped their platform later in 2021.

Their new app offers new features such as a personalized approach to a healthier lifestyle using science. WW utilizes the four pillars of wellness within its programs - sleep, food, activity, and mindset. With the right balance between the four, they believe their users will quickly achieve their health goals.

The app also utilizes its barcode scanner to check the food ingredients, and users can choose from their large selection of recipes for their meal choices.

PROS
  • The app promotes a healthy lifestyle instead of just offering healthy food options. It also holds one of the most responsive and comprehensive barcode scanners.
CONS
  • WW offers more freedom for food intake. This is a good thing, but too much freedom may lead to unhealthy cravings.

MyNetDiary - Best nutrition Database Calorie Counting App

A calorie counting app is all about calculating your food intake and its associated calorie value. That's the sole focus of MyNetDiary.

MyNetDiary allows users to scan barcodes of various food ingredients and compare them with the platform's database. Thanks to its list of more than 988,000 selections in its database, it provides quick and simple calculations on the spot.

The app also utilizes an in-app forum where you can ask the community about tips and recipe ideas for their health journey. You can also get extensive support from other users through their forum portal.

Users can set different goals depending on their fitness target. They can either set a target date or offer a target weight, and the app chooses the most appropriate approach for the program. Aside from the nutritional requirements, the app also reminds the user about their daily hydration needs.

PROS
  • The app's free service is easy to use and understand.
  • The food selection and listed recipes are all backed by registered dietitians.
CONS
  • Free users may see a couple of pop-up ads and banners within the app. It shouldn't be a problem if you can deal with it.

Noom - Best App to Track Calories and Start A Lifestyle Change

Unlike calorie counting apps on the market, Noom offers a change in the overall lifestyle of its users. They provide a means to help their users control their weight using their calorie budget scheme.

The app gives its users a recommended calorie intake per day depending on their age, height, and weight. The platform also considers gender and lifestyle choices when suggesting a daily calorie budget. Noom will slowly transform the user into their healthier self by constantly tracking calorie nutritional intake and tallying it with the user's weight.

While most fitness apps on the market restrict certain food items, Noom emphasizes their nutritional values. This approach provides flexibility and educates users about their consumption limits. Their unique take on their fitness plans provides a huge buffer towards fun and presentable healthy eating habits.

PROS
  • Offers one-on-one health coaching to their users.
  • Best fitness and wellness app for long-term weight management as it promotes a healthy lifestyle. 
CONS
  • Premium services are expensive compared to other calorie counting apps.

 

FAQ about Calorie Intake Monitoring Apps

How many calories should I consume to start losing weight?

Many factors affect weight control, such as age, lifestyle, calorie intake, and activity level. The recommended calories for losing weight may also differ from person to person. However, to effectively lose weight, an individual must consume fewer calories than the body needs. Many calorie counting apps compute this automatically for you.

Is it necessary to count calories?

Though it is not necessary, it is recommended to count your calorie intake if you're aiming for a healthier version of yourself. However, many experts agree that we should focus more on our food quality and promoting healthy habits.

A healthy, active lifestyle with a balanced diet will be more effective when it comes to burning calories and losing weight.

Is it necessary to pay for calorie counter apps?

There are free calorie counter apps available for your smartphone, and they all serve the same purpose. Users can still use the app's basic features, and that should be enough to help them with their fitness journey. However, certain features might only be available as part of the app’s premium services. Paid subscriptions for apps may vary. Some might be more expensive than others.


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