Introducing MyFitnessPal Meal Scan on iOS

Erica Moore
by Erica Moore
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Introducing MyFitnessPal Meal Scan on iOS

Phones have come a long way. They’ve come so far that actually talking on them isn’t why your phone is at your side 24/7. Could we ever go back to not having a camera at our fingertips? We don’t think so. That’s why, if someone tells you that you can log your food on MyFitnessPal just by hovering your phone camera over it, you should believe them.

Chances are, you use your smartphone to log meals on the MyFitnessPal app multiple times a day. In fact, our data shows users log more than 6,000 meals a minute! So, you probably log without thinking too much about it. Simply type in your food and select a match or tap your favorite foods and go on with your day — like it’s second nature. But, we’re here to tell you about an easier way — like scanning your food easier.

It’s probably crossed your mind as you type in “blueberries” that it’d be amazing if you could simply snap a photo of your blueberries to log this antioxidant-rich fruit. Well, at MyFitnessPal, we have done one better. No need to snap a photo and wait for it to process to then log your food; instead, you simply hover your camera over the food for the app to identify it instantly so you can verify and log it in no time flat.

Yes, visual food search has arrived. Say hello to Meal Scan.

MEAL SCAN BENEFITS

At MyFitnesspal, we are always looking for innovative ways to make your life better — and your ability to log easy and accurate; that’s where Meal Scan comes in.

“We know that when people jump onto MFP there’s no magic pixie dust in the app so that suddenly you hit your goals. You still have to do the work,” says Michael La Guardia, senior vice president of product for MyFitnessPal. “So we’re trying to make logging as effortless as possible. We want to help more people be mindful of their nutrition and successfully change their habits.”

Powered by Passio, which offers patented scanning technology for real-time food recognition and nutrition intelligence, this new feature shaves minutes off your logging time to make logging, and its eventual benefits of learning more about your macros, nutrition, habits, etc., more seamless than ever. Even better, it delivers a verified food result, so it’s not only fast and convenient; it’s also accurate.

  • Find the Right Foods Faster
    No more typing to search for each individual food. Meal Scan uses a visual food recognition system to give reliable results in seconds.
  • Track Food More Consistently
    Meal Scan is so simple, you’ll want to use it every day. Good thing, since tracking what you eat is the best way to reach your goals.

HOW TO USE MEAL SCAN

All MyFitnessPal Premium users on iOS with language preference set to English have access to this feature. You’ll just open the MyFitnessPal app on your phone and go to the logging screen (as usual). You’ll now also see an option to “scan meal.”

Aim your phone’s camera, zoom in on the food item, and hover it over your food for a few seconds — no need to snap a photo. Note that, while you’ll give MFP access to your camera, the Meal Scan function does not save or upload data from your phone’s camera.

Then, the library populates verified suggestions, and you take it from there by adding it to your diary instantly.

And, if you want to log multiple foods, you hover the camera over the dishes to incorporate the entire spread. Take it from us, your fingers will thank you.

BEST MATCH ACCURACY

While accuracy improves with more frequent usage, the feature can already successfully identify thousands of foods. If it doesn’t identify the right food, it’ll offer a list of suggestions for you to approve.

It’s all about using technology to remove obstacles that stand in the way of success.

“Logging is at the core of what we do, so we’re always going to be looking for ways to improve that,” La Guardia says.

Check out Meal Scan, now available in the MyFitnessPal app for iOS.

About the Author

Erica Moore
Erica Moore

Erica is a runner, gym rat and outdoor buff based in Austin, Texas. She is a lifelong athlete, having participated in a number of sports from her youth years well into her adult life. Erica has a passion for creating and sharing information, motivation and inspiration to help athletes-in-training across the world. She previously worked as the Running Editor at ACTIVE.com. You can follow Erica on Twitter or Instagram.

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