Is There An Easier Way to Log Your Basic Foods?

  • 2 Minutes Read

Learn how to enter staple or basic foods in your meals and recipes. Staple Foods have more complete nutrient content than brand foods and are easy to find and log. You can find them using the Staple screen while entering foods in meals or recipes.

Is There An Easier Way to Log Your Basic Foods?

Instead of logging brand foods for basic food items (e.g. 2% Organic Reduced Fat Milk by Organic Valley), you might want to log staple or basic foods (e.g. Milk Reduced Fat 2% Milkfat), in your meals and recipes. The benefit of this replacement is specifically for basic foods with similar nutrient content regardless of brand - like most plain dairy products, produce, meat, poultry, nuts, seeds, oils, fats, etc. MyNetDiary makes this very simple by offering a Staple Foods feature in the meal log as well as in recipe entry.

What Are Staple Foods?

Staple or basic foods come from USDA's Standard Reference Food Composition Database. These are food items that the USDA has tested multiple times for extended nutrient content. There are just under 7800 basic foods available and MyNetDiary contains all of these food items.

To make finding staple foods easier and with shorter and more manageable lists, MyNetDiary pulled about 900 staple food items and put them in a Staple Foods screen. When you tap the Staple Foods button, you will see a list of food groups. If you tap each food group, you will see common staple foods that you can select and log in your meal or custom recipe. For instance, if you tap "Vegetables - Raw or Frozen" you will see common staple foods in alphabetical order: artichokes raw, arugula or rocket raw, asparagus raw, avocados raw, etc.

Benefits of Using Staple Foods - Accuracy

The benefit of entering staple or basic foods over brand foods is that you get:

  1. More portion size options
  2. More complete nutrient content for each food item
  3. More accurate nutritional analysis for days and meals.

Brand foods will typically just list the nutrients required on food labels or Nutrition Facts panels. If you are trying to track vitamins and minerals not required on food labels, then logging staple foods will give you more accurate nutrient totals. This is especially important for people who use tracking for bariatric diet (after weight loss surgery), kidney disease, or for any condition that requires extensive vitamin and mineral tracking.

Benefits of Using Staple Foods in MyNetDiary - Faster Entry

Besides better accuracy, sometimes logging with Staple Foods is faster and easier than trying to find the basic item by using keywords in a search. If all that you need is a basic, staple food for your recipe or breakfast, you don't need to type search words and then scroll through dozens or hundreds of foods found - in MyNetDiary you can simply browse Staple Foods.

You Can Log Staple Foods in Meals and Custom Recipes

Staple Foods are available when you log your meal as well as when while entering a custom recipe. This is a huge time saver! Entering custom recipes is now much easier since most ingredients in the home kitchen are found in Staple Foods.

Both the iPhone and Android apps have the Staple Foods feature and it is coming soon for the website program.

Tip: 900 out of 7,800 basic foods in MyNetDiary's database are listed in Staple Foods. Be sure to try regular food search if you don't see the food you need in Staple Foods. If you feel that a basic food should be included in our Staple Foods screen, please let us know by emailing

We look forward to helping you discover and use this awesome new feature at MyNetDiary!

Tracking & MyNetDiary->Tracking Tips
May 21, 2019
Katherine Isacks
Katherine Isacks, MPS, RDN, CDE - Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE)

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