Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Quest for Nutrition Software

Dear Really Smart Programmers,

I have a suggestion. And it could make you a gazillion dollars. Ready? Design a software package that works on Mac, and Windows if you must, that makes nutritional analysis easy. That is an oversimplified request, from the hearts of many mothers trying to feed our kids well balanced diets. I have a list of demands. Um...requests.

Here goes:
  • There must be a very large database of foods built in, including complete nutritional info for each, with updates quarterly to add new foods that have hit the market
  • Users should be able to create recipes and analyze the nutritional content of each
  • Users should be able to add foods that are not already in the database
  • Users should be able to build a meal from any combination of single ingredients and recipes stored in the program, and analyze the nutritional quality of the meal
  • There should be capability to track multiple meals, and analyze nutritional value of that set time period
  • Information presented should go beyond the useless, er- basic, labeling required by the current labeling laws to include a comprehensive vitamin, mineral, and amino acids list
  • Users should be able to import recipes from outside sources and analyze nutritional value
  • Menu planning and meal tracking should be present as separate features to allow for actual consumption and upcoming meal plans
  • Users should be able to generate grocery lists from the menu planning section
  • Visual representation in the form of tables and graphs should show nutritional balance so users can see at a glance the strong and weak areas of the food in question
  • Daily nutritional tracking should show which RDA requirements have been met
  • User interface should be uncluttered and easy to understand

I know that there are more things we would like. But this should get you started. I'd be happy to take it for a test drive and give you feedback on how to improve it. Thanks so much.

Yours truly,
Allergy Mama

If any of my fellow food allergy menu planning readers have added suggestions, you should take those into account also, because they're pretty much your target market. XOXOX

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