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Just delete the user entered database of food, and put it out of its misery.

It is frustrating at best, and useless at worst.

You can type in a product name, get 100 variations, and every single one of them is wrong. You find one that at least has the right calories, use that, and the macros are wrong.

So then you end up manually entering your new variation of the food anyway, adding to the mess when someone else in another part of the world searches for that product, but it has different nutritional values because of either geographic location or change over time.

Just delete it.

Put some USDA database values in there that are actually really and actually verified, and stop sharing user entered data unless it is vetted somehow.

It's so out of hand it's unreal.
17 votes

Not At This Time · Last Updated


  • maryluck3
    maryluck3 Posts: 2 Member
    yes - entries should be validated.
    Also, MFP should set up a standard format for entries: generic subject, flavor, descriptor 1, descriptor 2
    soup, tomato, Campbell's, made with water
    yoghurt, greek, strawberry, non-fat, Yoplait
  • luumurd
    luumurd Posts: 1 Member
    edited January 30
    There is option on the bottom in the Android app to report about wrong food:
    1. Incorrect Food Name
    2. Incorrect Brand
    3. Wrong/Missing Nutrition Information
    4. Duplicate of Existing Entry
    5. Inappropriate listing
    6. Preferred Servicing Size is not Available

    My opinion is that users should have possible to submit foods to be confirmed with sending proofs of packages to myfitnesspal team. Another issue is that the nutrition data changes over time, but barcode doesn't. And third issue is that one barcode is used for a lot of different languages.
  • diversario
    diversario Posts: 2 Member
    This might be the case in the US, but outside (e.g. the Netherlands) I hardly see any "verified" foods when scanning products from major supermarkets. Almost all of it are user entries, and they're actually correct on the nutritional value.

    MFP should validate the foods, yes, but I can't see them actually doing it because it'll cost them. A more realistic change would be better processing of user-submitted corrections.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,171 Member
    That would pretty much wipe out the entire database and require it to be built again...not necessarily a bad thing, but my guess is that it would be months and months before it would be up and going, and probably still lacking as there's no way a few MFP employees could populate an entire database with everything. The verified checkmark means's still user entered. I don't think MFP has made their own entries into the database since the beginning of this's all crowdsourced.
  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 905 Member
    Not to mention that formulations, serving size and and macros change in products all the time - who is going to monitor the hundreds of thousands of commercial products out there? And there will always be variations in food; salmon has differing levels of fat depending on what type and where it’s from (and actually when it’s caught) - how do you compensate for that? I’ve started using the “my foods” section a lot more and I know that my most commonly food is in there. I still have the minefield of entering non-barcoded food (meat for instance) but I pick a mid point and go for that. Again, beef and lamb can all have differing levels of fat depending on how old the animal is when it’s slaughtered and what it’s fed on. I guess we all need to be a bit more consistent with reporting the really inaccurate foods…?
  • rwarren1969
    rwarren1969 Posts: 20 Member
    If/When the database is cleaned up:

    -- please retain the Canadian entries, i was very pleased to find such extensive entries for Canadian brands, including local store brands, even Dollarama!

    -- please introduce multilingual support, so that foods entered in English and French show up ONCE not twice

    I saw several chain restaurant meals, also if there is a way to enter a local non-chain restaurant and then have someone from your staff reach out to the restaurant to fill in the menu with all the nutritional info. If available, of course! Dunno if every little mom and pop hole in the wall bothers with nutrition grids.
  • Sinisterbarbie1
    Sinisterbarbie1 Posts: 510 Member
    edited March 12
    MFP should identify data entered by staff or data sourced from USFDA database with a special identifier

    Eliminating all user data would eliminate a lot of data that is at least useful for judging a calorie amount if other sources of info are unavailable

    Including only the most recent user entered data might introduce more errors over time because it will constantly perpetuate new user errors and frustrate long term users who will no longer update the database, but will instead rely on their personal diaries of commonly consumed foods and stop correcting information/adding to information in the crowd database
  • paulwiggers
    paulwiggers Posts: 2 Member
    Linking to certain databases, instead of using user created items, might help out a bit. I am also a Cronometer user and they do just that. One of the biggest problems I face there is that a lot of food from the biggest chain supermarket in The Netherlands (Albert Heijn and Jumbo) isn't in there so I end up creating my own foods anyway.
    When I do find foods that are there, the values don't always match with what's on the label, requiring me to enter another custom food.

    As you can see, the problem doesn't go away by just clearing the database and using validated databases. When foods aren't part of those databases, you are going to end up with the same mess in a few years time.
    One thing that might work is getting a small group of users together (perhaps pay for their annual subscription as a reward?) and let them go through the products in their local supermarkets. Most of the products are on the website and have excellent label information right there.
    Let this information be verified by a majority of the people in the group and let them add those foods directly to the database. This will allow MFP to link to verified databases for the major brands and also include verified product information for local/national supermarkets.
    Free users get access to the "free for all" database (the current one) and Premium users get to choose between connecting to the free database or to the vetted database (which might, at least in the beginning, include less food choices).
  • cmriverside
    cmriverside Posts: 32,615 Member
    edited March 20
    I've spent years entering my foods the way I want them, and I don't share them to the "shared" database, so you guys never even see them. As long as my entries will still be there, I'm good with it.

    I think this could be solved simply by creating a separate database for the Admin-entered ones, or make them a different color or bolded.

    This site is flagged into every single food search any person on the planet makes. The crowd-sourcing created that search result (genius marketing.) I don't think MFP will ever delete it.
  • Sinisterbarbie1
    Sinisterbarbie1 Posts: 510 Member
    Maybe MFP should explore an arrangement with Instacart or another grocery delivery service to exchange data. I think the grocery shoppers scan labels to confirm they are buying the right thing for the customer and to check out. Perhaps that data could go into the nutrition info. In MFP in exchange for advertising or for direct links out to shopping carts or something similar that would benefit the grocery service. I personally wouldn’t mind that because it would benefit me on both ends - I get to build a grocery delivery list if I am using the service (or a grocery list with a store where I will go pick up) while I am thinking about what I plan to eat, and I know that the food I am selecting will be easily trackable once it arrives in my fridge.
  • fitngal9765
    fitngal9765 Posts: 1 Member
    No! I need the database for my own laziness in not wanting to enter stuff manually.
  • One idea would be for users to tag an ingredient. Something like good or bad. Next time you search, good comes at the top, bad is at the end, and a little dot could maybe show that you tagged it. That way you only have to check one time. I know the ones you use regular is suggested, but if you dont use them for a while they disapear. And when doing a recipe you have to search all again.

    / Sorry for the poor english not my natural language.
  • disciplineworks
    disciplineworks Posts: 8 Member
    edited May 29
    Even some of the verified entries are dubious. All the idiotic entries in your database - solid foods measured in milliliters, etc., make it very frustrating to use and leave me wondering how some people even function in life. Connect to the USDA database for at least a baseline of precise values.