Though I am slightly ashamed to admit it, I occasionally have poor eating habits. As active as I am, and as health conscious as I try to be, I find it all too easy to lose track of what I eat on a weekly basis, much less a daily basis. Perhaps it’s an excuse, but I just can’t find the motivation to get myself to a nutritionist, research and strategically regulate what I ingest, or open up Notes and create a log to help me track my eating habits. I need something easier. Something like The Eatery food tracking app.
Massive Health cofounders Aza Raskin and Sutha Kamal developed The Eatery to effectively track and change eating habits through visualization. Snap a picture of your meal, upload it, and a crowd of app users just like yourself weigh in to tell you whether it’s “fit or fat.”
But is crowdsourcing ultimately reliable? How many people giving ratings are fully informed as to the nutritional content of their meal? Just how accurate are others’ assessments going to be? Developer Aza Raskin claims, “While straight-forward crowdsourcing may not seem like the best source of healthiness of a meal, the true power of what’s possible: We’re already doing interesting things behind the scenes; and as we accumulate data, our algorithms get smarter.” So in The Eatery’s case, perhaps the best answer to more accurate nutritional data is time. And over time, the more people who use this application, the more statistically reliable its results are going to be.
For those who have a vested interest in their eating habits, want to lose a few pounds, meet a long or short-term dietary goal, or need an easier, more simplified means of identifying healthy food and drink, this application may be one for you. As the utility itself proclaims, The Eatery is a massive health experiment, and its goal is ultimately the same as those of its target base: to strive towards and help foster well-being. And for this experiment to work most effectively, it only needs more participants.
The Eatery is available on iPhone and iPad, and can be downloaded for free through the App Store.
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