fatsecret food database

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Joined: Aug 12
Posts: 42

Posted: 16 Sep 2012, 21:52
Hi all,

This evening I noticed that some of the nutritional information for food products in the database is inconsistent with the information on the food products' labels. One example was the level of sodium in the Foster Farm skinless, boneless chicken breasts. According to the label on the package and the one I saw online, the level of sodium is 75mg per serving (4oz, or 112g). However, the database said that the half serving I used contained 140 mg of sodium. If you do the math you can see that's 3.73 times more than what should be reported for a half serving of this product. I've seen discrepancies for sodium in other products, too. I've also seen inconsistencies in other categories, as well. I was wondering if this is just happening to me, or if others here have noticed this, too? I was also wondering if there is a way to correct the information in the database so that your diet calendar is an accurate reflection of what you've actually consumed?

Another issue I am wondering about is how to deal with food not found in the database? It doesn't happen all that often, but occasionally I can not find a food item in the database and I was curious if there's a way to add an item to it so it will be there for future reference? I know it's not a spelling issue because I type the information exactly as it reads on the label.

Thanks for any help you folks can offer.

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 51

Posted: 17 Sep 2012, 00:07
Ok, so the data base is full of items that have been entered in by members. That being said, all of the info may not be correct. As to your second question, when you type in an item and it comes up with not found in database, it should ask you if you want to add it to the database. Just click yes. It will also ask if you want to keep it private or share it. Hope that helps.
My fault, my failure, is not in the passions I have, but in my lack of control of them. ~Jack Kerouac

Joined: Aug 12
Posts: 42

Posted: 17 Sep 2012, 02:47
Thank you, corinnas54. Some of the problems stem from me, actually. After doing a little more searching I found the correct Foster Farm product and then the database information matched the label information. However, there are still some food items with label information that doesn't match the database information. So, it looks like I need to figure out if I have the right product or if there is in fact a discrepancy between the label and the database.

As for adding a new item to the database, I don't recall being asked if I wanted to add it, but could have missed that. I'll look out for that next time it comes up.

I forgot to ask in my first post, but I was also wondering if there is a way to modify the quantity consumed? Personally, I prefer to add the number of grams of a product I eat, but some products only allow number of servings to be recorded. Is there anyway to modify this function so I can report it in grams rather than servings? If not, it's no big deal, but if it's possible I would prefer that instead of having to calculate what fraction of a serving I've eaten, especially since it's not always a nice even fraction like 1/4, 1/2 et cetera.

Thanks again for the help here!

Joined: Jan 12
Posts: 9

Posted: 17 Sep 2012, 03:28
Hi ArchStanton,

There are many people online who do not do well with maths, so you will often find entries that are incorrect. You have the option of correcting the entries as I once did with the info on a can of Sprite which was way below the calories it contains because the person who entered it took the calories per 100 ml and used it for an entire can. I don't know what method you use for accessing Fat Secret. I am using the Android app which behaves totally different to the Ipad app that my boyfriend uses. So it would be hard to advise you without knowing what it is exactly that you are seeing.

Now as for the grams entries, most products have a drop down list of other measurements, e.g. grams, cups, pieces. Just play with it a bit more and you'll find out. Where no other option is listed other than the per 100 g calories, you can simply look at the product you are eating to find out the total weight and do simple math to decide how many portions more or less from the one listed you are having.

Finally, have you used the barcode reader? It is really nifty. You hold up your mobile or tablet camera facing the barcode and it tells you if it finds an entry for this product. If no entry is found, you can add it yourself - new entry. I personally find it rather intuitive to use but like I said I am using Android. I don't like the Fat Secret calorie counter online - it is hard to use, confusing as it shows me mostly American products and I live in the UK - generally it is not as well thought out as the Android calorie counter. But at least I have an option and can choose to enter my calories from the place that best works for me.

Hope you enjoy using Fat Secret and its apps and that you succeed in your goals!

Joined: Aug 12
Posts: 42

Posted: 17 Sep 2012, 15:29
Thank you for your response, TaniaBarnet. I've been accessing fatsecret using my laptop. I've never tried using my phone to do it. I don't think my phone has apps, so I'm not sure I can do the things you're talking about. For now I will see if can can make corrections from my laptop. I still have a lot to learn about this site. So far I have not been able to figure out how to make modifications to the drop down menu. What I've been doing is doing my own calculations and entering the percentage of a serving as a decimal value when it will not allow me to enter the number of grams consumed. Since my phone doesn't have apps I don't think I can use it as a bar code reader. I'll look into this more to see if I'm wrong, though. Thanks again for your help. I really appreciate it.

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