Since Mike got me an iPod Touch for Christmas, I've been using a free calorie counting application called, "Lose It!" My friend Lauren initially introduced it to me before I had my iPod & I was very jealous that I didn't have a program that user-friendly at my fingertips.
While working as a registered dietitian, I am often suggesting to my patients that they keep a food log to become more aware of exactly what they're ingesting. It's super easy to underestimate how much you're actually consuming in a day since each little bit adds up so quickly. Lose It! calculates your caloric needs based off your gender, height & current weight & asks you to choose your goal weight. You can choose how quickly you want to lose the weight & it will assign you a daily caloric level. Then you use the database to enter what you've eaten & how much.
This is exactly the kind of thing I have to do in order to keep my weight in check. It's very easy for me to just eat random things throughout the day without much notice & before I realize, I've gained five pounds. Lose It! has helped me become more accountable for what I'm eating. I've been allotted 1,300 calories/day in order to lose one pound/week & some days it can be tricky to eat well & feel satisfied. I've noticed that it helps me choose foods more wisely & ask myself if what I was about to eat is really worth it.
If you have an iPhone or iPod Touch, I seriously recommend you trying this application if you're interested in getting a better handle on your weight & nutrition.