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Discouraged in reporting of foods being accurate from MFP verses a couple other nutrition sites. :(

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2

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  • cindytw
    cindytw Posts: 1,027 Member
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    I find with ANY value I have to look and take an educated guess whether it is right before logging. I know some entries are off on potassium for example, so I find one closer to what I know is right.
  • spush
    spush Posts: 132 Member
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    I agree with a lot of what Dragonwolf says. As a UK user, MFP can be a pain because so many database entries are American and the nutritional values are different. I have to be very careful to check the carb values of the entry I'm using. Once I'm happy that it's accurate it goes into the favourites list, or I save it as a meal to use frequently. I also look for supermarket names in entries as a UK name generally means UK values.

    That's what I do too! I preface most things I can't scan a barcode for with either asda or tesco. Then save in favs. A lot of entries to the data base by the cico lot don't even bother adding carbs, or anything apart from calories.
  • totaloblivia
    totaloblivia Posts: 1,164 Member
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    I agree with a lot of what Dragonwolf says. As a UK user, MFP can be a pain because so many database entries are American and the nutritional values are different. I have to be very careful to check the carb values of the entry I'm using. Once I'm happy that it's accurate it goes into the favourites list, or I save it as a meal to use frequently. I also look for supermarket names in entries as a UK name generally means UK values.

    I'm in the UK too and do exactly the same. What I can't believe is the variation in carbs given in different entries for avocados...made me avoid them for a long time when actually they are great for lchf. I now use the Sainsbury avocado entry!

    Don't be too downcast @shadesofidaho‌ ... I do believe even when one is being as accurate as possible, it's still all so dependent on other factors that it's hard to know what will dependably produce results. Big electronic hugs.

  • DissLocated
    DissLocated Posts: 43 Member
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    Glad I'm not the only one! I've had a few incidents of selecting the wrong avocado option and nearly fainting at the state of my macros! :D
  • kirkor
    kirkor Posts: 2,530 Member
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    @shadesofidaho‌ black coffee and plain chicken thighs were wrong?? :-/
    Can you link to those entries? Maybe we can all then help and click "no" on the "Is this data accurate?" button, to help future users.
  • shadesofidaho
    shadesofidaho Posts: 485 Member
    edited March 2015
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    Give me a few minutes and I will open my foods to public.

    Here is the USDA on Coffee Black 8 oz and MFP is on my foods. ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/4287?manu=&fgcd=

    Chicken thigh roasted skin on 100g USDA. http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/894?manu=&fgcd=

    I added two versions of Chicken thigh. Raw and Roasted. How can a Roasted thigh and skin be twice the calories of RAW?

    Some of the differences are slight. I am not totally nit picky but this is important to me and I do not feel comfortable nor do I have the time to keep picking through each entry to see which one is the right one. Too much fiddling around. I am not sure I can trust the USDA site either. When we are trying to hit our macros as close as possibel a slight error on items over a full day can add up.

    Some say check the foods against others before logging them but I have not found a way to do this. I was spending too much time sitting here logging when I could be up and moving doing some thing. For me checking one data base makes more sense than trying to figure out what entry is the right one here.
  • kirkor
    kirkor Posts: 2,530 Member
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    Those numbers between the 2 sites look right in line with each other to me.

    re: the raw vs. cooked question, that is why I always recommend weighing and measuring raw, dry, uncooked, etc. The water loss (or gain, in the case of something like rice) from cooking can be quite dramatic.

    >I do not feel comfortable nor do I have the time to keep picking through each entry to see which one is the right one
    Ya, this is where eating relatively consistently can make things a lot easier, especially since MFP remembers your recent and frequent foods.
  • zoom2
    zoom2 Posts: 934 Member
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    Dragonwolf wrote: »
    Some tips for those still tracking here to remember:

    1. Look for the entries without an asterisk ( * ) next to them and use them as often as possible. These are non-other-user entered entries (I think the search will show you your own recipes/foods now, too). For whole foods, these will be USDA ones, so they should be accurate.
    2. Look for entries with several up votes. These are more likely to be accurate, as others have verified them. (Caveat -- keep in mind that not everyone is from your country, and processed foods often have different recipes for different countries, especially for US vs everyone else.)
    3. Cross-check with the nutrition label in your hand (if the food in question has a label), up-vote if correct, or correct it if not.
    4. Use the items from your recent/frequent tab, or copy from previous dates, as much as possible. This will save you having to repeat 1-3 as much. Most of us eat largely the same things (especially over the course of several weeks or months), so this should be pretty easy to do for most foods.
    5. If you use the mobile app, use the barcode scan feature as much as possible, especially for brand-name packaged foods. This helps ensure (or make more likely) a correct match between the database and what you're eating.

    This is pretty much exactly what I do.

    And if you think macros can be off, the exercise #s are often WAY off (the running #s are pretty close, but the cycling ones are crazy off. I think they assume everyone is pedaling a 40# knobby-tired bike). Short of using a HRM (which doesn't really work for me, because boobs + underwire sports bras) I generally log an underestimated calorie burn to make up for any foods that have any underestimated calorie estimates. I figure it all equals-out in the end.
  • GrannyMayOz
    GrannyMayOz Posts: 1,051 Member
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    I added two versions of Chicken thigh. Raw and Roasted. How can a Roasted thigh and skin be twice the calories of RAW?

    Could it be that they're including the fat the thigh was roasted in? But that doesn't explain the other entries that are off, even if it explains that one.

  • shadesofidaho
    shadesofidaho Posts: 485 Member
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    Granny it could not explain a RAW skin on thigh being 120 calories verses ROASTED skin on thigh being 247. HOW can all the water and fat in a RAW thigh be half the calories of a roasted thigh. It should be the opposite.

    I am not going to fuss with this any more. Already spent too much time and emotional energy on it. If I enter the wrong item and it is in my foods here then I continue to enter the wrong item over and over. I would rather have that error on my end verses taking some one else word for it.

    I entered my breakfast starting from scratch this AM in Excel and it took me less than a minute to do so. I feel comfortable with what I have entered. Years ago when I did Atkins I kept my foods logged on paper and it worked for me. Excel will do the same now.

    Thanks for the thoughts.
  • GaleHawkins
    GaleHawkins Posts: 8,159 Member
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    I now see eating more of a lifestyle thing instead of a counting thing. Yes we need to be aware of what we eat but where a food item adds 150, 200 or even 250 calories for that day should not be an issue. My daily body weight is my only real concern if I am eating healthy macros.

    As one that mainly eats out two meals a day I seldom know my calorie count which is a non issue as long I am eating balanced and my body weight results are on my target on average.

    The little half and half coffee creamers are labeled at 15 cals each on one source and 20 cals from another source. I had 27 yesterday. Was that 405 calories or 540 calories?

    This morning my weight was about the same as for the past week so I could care less where the cream was 405 or 540 calories.

    The meal where I had 5 cups of coffee was made up of 5 over easy medium eggs, 3 slices of bacon and 2 pieces of sausage. The 3 slices of bacon are never the same size or cooked the same way so their calorie count is all over the board I am sure.

    Another point is I have gone two months without by body weight changing by even one pound net but still lost a notch on the belt. Weight loss is more about net results in my view.

    There is no chart of calories per item that is CORRECT for what one actually consumes at any given meal. They are for a reference ONLY based of some average at best and just made up at worse. :)
  • yturie47
    yturie47 Posts: 170 Member
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    I have been following this thread with great interest because of the many discrepancies. Why can't MFP just set up a database using the USDA stats. At least as an option. It is public information after all. They could have both as options if people want to "customize". Or maybe develop some software that could be run regularly to check a basic entry like " 6 oz. chicken thigh with bone and skin = 280 calories, etc. (I just made that up, so dont yell at me). with the USDA, AND default it to the first entry on the search. Nothing will ever be perfect because we aren't comparing widgets but it could be reasonably accurate and consistent. I have forced myself to take the time to weigh and measure carefully and would like some help on the other end. These are simple calculations and I don't want to feel like it is a waste of time on and I am sure everyone doesn't want to waste their time either. Shades, I started logging on paper a few days ago after thinking about your frustration! :#
  • zoom2
    zoom2 Posts: 934 Member
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    I really wish the entries with the most confirmations would show up earlier in results, too. I frequently look through 3-4 of the same entry before finding the one with the most confirmations.
  • shadesofidaho
    shadesofidaho Posts: 485 Member
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    I added three pork loin raw to my foods. Check pork Loin raw even within MFP Data base how would you know which was correct because none match the USDA numbers. ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2605?manu=&fgcd=

    I believe the whole point to logging foods is to be accurate. The first thing some one says they are not losing weight every one says Are you weighing /measuring correctly?? Logging all your foods. Putting the blame all on them for not maintaining accuracy. Over and over I read this and it is true one cup is less than one and a quarter cup by eyeball.

    I think the MFP site is great but it needs a total re-do of the foods database and not allow people to add their version. Or as yturie says let the USDA be the first choice.

    Too many of my foods do not have nutrition labels on them.

    Yturi try Excel or Open office is a free version if you do not have Excel. It is simple to use.
  • JPW1990
    JPW1990 Posts: 2,424 Member
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    I don't use anything pre-entered on MFP unless it exactly matches the label in my hand. I also don't use the barcode scanner, because it doens't guarantee you'll get the right version or most recent. I keep my phone in my back pocket and take a pic of a food label as I cook if it's something I haven't used before. I'd much rather use the "my foods" tab and know the labels are accurate than trust something that was entered 2 years ago and confirmed by 200 people didn't change their recipe this year and add 3 carbs with a smaller serving size.
  • FIT_Goat
    FIT_Goat Posts: 4,224 Member
    edited March 2015
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    I logged some flank steak this afternoon (just for giggles) and the fat is lower than it should be according to the USDA. They say it should be around 66g for the amount I had (and 270g for the protein). MFP gives me 75 and 190 grams for each (respectively). That's a pretty significant difference.

    Edit: good thing I am not worried about excess protein.
  • shadesofidaho
    shadesofidaho Posts: 485 Member
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    So Goat which one are you going to believe? This is a bit of my point. Who do we believe. MFP with user enter or USDA. I know I do not trust the Gov any more than any one else but who do I believe?
  • shadesofidaho
    shadesofidaho Posts: 485 Member
    edited March 2015
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    You changed your numbers. Still it is significant difference. Who do you believe? Which Flank Steak did you log and how much. I can only find lean trimmed and lord knows you would not be bothered with that.
  • FIT_Goat
    FIT_Goat Posts: 4,224 Member
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    So Goat which one are you going to believe? This is a bit of my point. Who do we believe. MFP with user enter or USDA. I know I do not trust the Gov any more than any one else but who do I believe?

    I did change the numbers. First numbers were Chuck steak. In either case, the protein is still way off.

    I am going to believe that the truth could be something in between or neither. It was pretty lean. Came trimmed.

    I don't track macros or worry about them, so this stuff does not really bug me anymore. It used to bug me as much as you though.
  • FIT_Goat
    FIT_Goat Posts: 4,224 Member
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    The protein discrepancy is probably a huge issue for some keto people who restrict that macro.