What makes FatWatch unique?

Most other weight tracking apps record your weight and display it back to you in a chart. FatWatch goes an extra step and analyzes your weight: it uses statistical methods to give you useful information beyond a pretty chart.

Simply put, FatWatch is the weight tracker for people who are serious about managing their weight.

  • FatWatch has a cleanly designed interface, making it quick and easy to enter your weight even with groggy, early morning reflexes.
  • FatWatch uses mathematics to compute a moving average and your daily energy deficit/surplus. If you're going to enter your weight every day into a computer program, don't you think it should do more than a sheet of paper?
  • FatWatch will take body fat ratio into account, so you know you're tracking changes to your fat, and not muscle.
  • FatWatch supports kilograms, pounds, and stones. If somebody comes up with another way to measure weight, I'll add support for that, too.
  • FatWatch allows you to record notes and marks to annotate your weight history.
  • FatWatch doesn't hold your data hostage: you can export your weight history to any computer at any time over Wi-Fi.
  • FatWatch doesn't require you to start over: if you've been tracking your weight with some other tool, you can import it into FatWatch via Wi-Fi. (Send me email if you need help with this.)

Most importantly, FatWatch is about weight management. If you're not naturally skinny, you will probably need to be watching your weight for the rest of your life. FatWatch is designed to be with you over the long term, after you've reached your goal.

No other app does all these things.

How is FatWatch related to Eat Watch?

"Eat Watch" is the name of a Palm application by John Walker, author of The Hacker's Diet.

FatWatch is not affiliated with or endorsed by John Walker. I am simply a former Eat Watch user who wanted to continue using the same weight tracking methodology on my iPhone. While FatWatch was inspired by Eat Watch, it was designed from scratch to be a first-class citizen on the iPhone.

If you are a former Eat Watch user I hope you will feel right at home in FatWatch. I even developed a web tool to help migrate your weight history.

Isn’t the name a bit... direct?

Maybe. But “fat” is a noun, fat is what you want to burn, and fat is what you need to track. If you’re concerned that “fat” is also an adjective and pejorative, maybe you should consider this an opportunity fight the stigma, and regard the word as no worse than ”nearsighted”.

I’m not interested in sugar-coating: that’s how we got here in the first place.

Why doesn't FatWatch let me enter calories I've eaten?

Food diaries can be helpful in the short term but are unsustainable in the long term.

In the short term, tracking what you eat is an excellent way to gain awareness and control of your diet. You might even cut down on snacking simply because you don't want to go to the trouble of looking up the value of a cookie in a food database!

It is impractical, however, to maintain a food diary over the long term. It is simply too much work! Unfortunately, if you don't learn how to control your weight without maintaining a diary, giving up the diary may mean going back to square one.

FatWatch's approach is slightly different. It works backwards from your weight to estimate how many calories (or kilojoules) per day you are burning away or overeating. You can then use this information to make adjustments to your eating or exercise habits, without having to maintain a complete record of your diet.

For example, say FatWatch reports that you are eating a surplus of 100 calories per day. Knowing that, you can read the label on the back of a can of Coca-Cola and discover that if you simply switch to Coke Zero (or water) you would be losing weight!

FatWatch isn't just a tool for losing weight. It's a tool for managing your weight. Long after you have achieved your goal weight, you can continue to use FatWatch to keep you there. And all that it requires is that you weigh yourself each day.

How do I get it?

First, you need an iPhone or iPod touch: any model old or new as long as it has the latest iPhone Software Update or iPod touch Software Update installed. iTunes should offer to install the update when you sync your device.

Next, you can download the app using iTunes on your computer or the App Store on your phone.

  • To download on your computer, you can click here to open the FatWatch page in iTunes. Click the "Buy App" button to purchase FatWatch, and iTunes will transfer FatWatch to your device on your next sync. (For more info, see "Syncing and arranging applications from the App Store")
  • To download on your device, go to the home screen and tap the App Store icon. (If you don't see an App Store icon, you probably need to install a software update.) Next, tap the Search tab at the bottom of the screen. In the search field that appears, type "fatwatch" and then tap Search. FatWatch will appear in the search results; tap it to see the FatWatch page. Tap the price to transform it into a "Buy App" button; tap "Buy App" to purchase the app and download it to your phone.

Who are you?

My name is Benjamin Ragheb, I live in New York City, and I spend my time writing software and performing improv comedy.

Several years ago I began tracking my weight every day using Eat Watch for Palm and lost over thirty pounds. I wrote FatWatch because I wanted to continue tracking my weight on my iPhone.

I am not a doctor and cannot give you any advice on whether you should lose or gain weight.

Do you have a Facebook page?

Yup. Find FatWatch on Facebook.

Do you have a Twitter account?

Yup. Follow @FatWatch on Twitter.

What about questions not answered here?

There's a lot of useful information on the Support page.

You can also send email to help@fatwatchapp.com.