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SUROSE62 SparkPoints: (2,940)
Fitness Minutes: (1,028)
Posts: 40
2/11/13 10:05 A

Thank you for your response Nirerin. I guess I didn't think much about the computer just putting in foods. I do not have much checked off on my requests. No Tofu, low sodium, and low cholestrol are the only ones checked off. I guess I was just looking for more variety. I need to do some 'work' myself and some meal planning with the calories in mind.

Thank you so much for your help. If you have any recipes that you like, and are willing to share I'd love it. Have a good day!

MISSRUTH Posts: 4,201
2/11/13 7:41 A

When I first started Sparkpeople (well.... when I first got really serious. I'd been off and on for a couple years before that) I tried the meal plan. And ran into the same problem you did. I don't care much for fish, and then several times in one week, was just TOO much.

So I turned that off, and went to planning my own meals. Visualizing the "My Plate" thing helped a lot. At first, I went with a slab of grilled meat and didn't try any casseroles or "mixed up" type foods. It was easier for me to just keep all the food groups separate. After that I got more adventurous.

I find planning my days in advance, really helps. I can look at where I'm overdoing it on the carbs and swap something out for a lower-carb alternative. Or if I'm too low on protein, I can add in a little snack of something with more protein in it.

NIRERIN Posts: 14,152
2/11/13 7:38 A

it's a computer program, not a human. people enter in the menus and tag them, but a computer randomly pulls to plop things in your menu. it doesn't know how not to be repetitive because it doesn't know it is being repetitive. and the lower the range you have [1200-1550 is the lowest] and the more of the optional boxes you have ticked, the fewer foods will fit in your ranges. and i don't think salmon 3 times is unreasonable or pasta four times because i have seen about eight pbjs in a week. 3 and 4 times are reasonable reuses to use up ingredients, which has been a complaint for some years.
if you hate salmon, when you see it, just use an equal amount of another fish. or if you don't like fish, tick off the no fish option so you won't see fish.
it's a free computer program. it cannot move mountains or take into account every food and frequency preference you have.

SUROSE62 SparkPoints: (2,940)
Fitness Minutes: (1,028)
Posts: 40
2/11/13 7:11 A

Thank you Sparkleday- It is GREAT to have others share their experiences. It was just discouraging to have so many repeats of meals in one week. I like to use the menu as a guide as the calories are figured for you. I guess I just need to try going in a different direction. I was looking for the easy way out with a prepared menu as a starting point.
I have the cookbook and have tagged many recipes I want to try. Need to get the proper ingredients. thanks again

2/10/13 8:27 P

One option would be to sit down and think of five breakfasts you like, five lunches, five dinners. Then pick one of your own when you don't like the SP one. Or get a buddy and plan meals for a week. I have recently tried several of the SP recipes and they are terrific. I love the cookbook. Good luck!

SUROSE62 SparkPoints: (2,940)
Fitness Minutes: (1,028)
Posts: 40
2/10/13 8:19 P

Thank you IvyLass. I liked the prepared menus because it gave me a starting point, but many times I make substitutions anyway. I guess I will try on my own and watch the portion control

IVYLASS SparkPoints: (212,484)
Fitness Minutes: (77,489)
Posts: 7,162
2/10/13 7:51 P

I never used the prepared menus. I tracked my own food. Try that for two weeks and see how you do.

SUROSE62 SparkPoints: (2,940)
Fitness Minutes: (1,028)
Posts: 40
2/10/13 7:28 P

I took the time to look forward on my menu for the week. I can't believe that Salmon is listed to eat 3 times this week and pasta or spaghetti is listed for 4 times. Aren't there other items that SP could recommend between 1200 and 1500 calories per day? I understand that I can substitute, but I spend most of my time making changes to try and get some protein that I like. Eggs is only listed once, all other mornings some type of cereal is listed. There is no much variety, how many potatoes with beans and salsa does one person need to eat. I am disappointed in the menu selection.

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