The Food Databases


What will I learn here?


You will learn about the three food databases..


About the Food Databases


Three Data databases store specific information about the foods making up your meals. The Meal Planner uses protein, carbohydrate and fats values only, unlike other diet programs and meal planners that store and use other nutrient values. You may select foods from any of those databases and also switch between them while planning a meal. 

Meal Planner Database


This database is a simple, yet generally encompassing database that provides a selection of fairly common foods. This database is the original Lowell Clinic database and was used by Dr. Lowell for his patients. It is not user updateable and is a read only database. The foods data contained in this database are as is. We make no claims on the accuracy of the nutrient values but are generally assumed to be correct.

USDA Food Database


This database is the US Department of Agriculture food database, and is a compilation of about 6000 foods. This is a read only database and is not user updateable.


The data in the USDA database is as is. No claims are made for accuracy or usability. You may choose to use it or not use it.


The USDA Serving Measurement.


This database uses two serving measurement fields on certain selected foods within the database. When two fields are detected, a Change Measure button appears in the Nutrition Facts box, permitting a switch between them, thereby allowing a choice between the units that make the most sense. When selecting your food for inclusion into the Unbalanced Food Items box, the measure appearing in the Nutrition Facts box is the measure that will be associated in the Your Serving Size box. Always look at the measurement units below the Enter Your Serving Size box, as that is the measurement that you have chosen and becomes the measurement unit used when your meal is balanced.

User Personal Database


This database is user maintained. It is a user modified read/write database and expands each time you choose foods from either of the other databases, and enter them into the Unbalanced Food Items box. Think of this database as your personal filing cabinet for all your favorite foods. You may update or change fields, make corrections, delete from or add to it and search it. You may also clear it, but everything will be lost that you have added. It is generally assumed to be the database of choice. You add your favorite foods with nutrient values you know to be correct from the food labels on the foods you buy.  


Eventually you will always use this database when this database grows and contains most of the foods you consume.


How foods get stored in the Personal Database.


Foods are stored in the Personal Database  using two methods.


The first method is all food items appearing in the Unbalanced Food Items box are written to the personal database. The user has no control over this. Once a food has been selected and appears in this box, the database grows, and can in theory grow to the sum size of the USDA and Meal Planner databases combined, plus the addition of any foods the user has entered.


If you want to add a food(s) to this database from either of the included databases, first click the food into the Food Selection Box. and then click it into the Unbalanced Food Items box. That food is stored automatically in the User Personal Database where it will stay until deleted through the Database Edit Utility.


The second method allows the user to enter new foods from the Database Edit Utility screen. All purchased foods are entered into the Personal Database through this utility.


When adding new foods to this database you will be storing seven fields. (see What Label Data is Required? for explanations of five of the stored data taken directly from food labels)


The following fields are stored in the personal database:

(1)   Food Description

(2)   Protein content per serving size

(3)   Carbohydrate content per serving size

(4)   Fat content per serving size

(5)   Serving size

(6)   Serving measurement

(7)   Your Serving Size (Always enter 1 if you don't know what your serving size will be. This number is not important when adding a new food to this database)


To enter new foods, pull down the Database menu and select Edit Database/Setup. Enter the new foods data into the database per What Label Data is Required? and press the Add/Update Food button