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Many of you know that I have been working on menu planning software for the Dr. Gourmet web site. I am really excited to tell you that we are launching this software today. I would love your help in spreading the word by sending this message on to your friends.
When I started working on this project it seemed easy -- the idea of a menu creation program that addresses not just a healthy diet, or one for weight loss, but which can also can handle specific health issues like GERD, lactose intolerance, food allergies or those who use Coumadin® (warfarin). From your emails I know that these are major issues for a lot of people and require careful choice of recipes, given the consequences for folks. There are three redundant systems that check for safety in those with health issues or food allergies.
It was really important that the software work for families. Time and again I have had a mom say that she had to be able to create menu plans for the whole family. At the same time, I wanted the program to be able to use the leftovers in a sensible way. Many of the programs that I have seen pick recipes at random and don't address how leftover food will be used. From talking with patients all these years, I know this is a major issue, because the extra food will get eaten if it's just sitting there in the refrigerator. Here’s a comment from one of our beta testers:
I hope you remember me I wrote to Dr Gourmet back in August, overweight and desperate... I also was involved in testing the new software. I have been following the diet and have now lost 12 pounds I still love the food and have told others about it. Some people asked for the recipes. I made the apple pancakes and took it to work they loved it. . . . . Thank you so much for getting me on the right track I am eating very healthy now.
Now that the software is done, the exciting part is that we have a great foundation and will be adding a lot of very cool features in the next few months. Pretty quickly we'll address activity levels as part of the system for those who are more active or are on a training program. The next major health area to tackle is those with gluten sensitivity. I'm working on incorporating features for pregnancy, renal diets, diabetes and for those with cancer. We are already working on refinements to the system, to make the shopping lists and menus easier to use. We have designed into the system many more customizable features that will be implemented over the next few months.
There are a lot of great features in our first version:
1. It is free. There is no charge to use the software.
2. It is fully customizable to an individual’s needs whether they want to lose weight or simply eat great healthy food.
3. The system creates two week meal plans with shopping lists that are perfectly balanced and follow guidelines of a Mediterranean type diet. Since this is the only type of diet that has been shown to help people live longer and live better users can be assured that they are getting the best possible meal plan.
4. The software allows those with health problems and allergies or users of certain medications to create meal plans that fit what their doctors want them to eat. For instance, those who use Coumadin® can create meal plans that will not interfere with their medication. Those with acid reflux can create GERD-friendly meal plans.
5. Families are taken into account and embraced. Meal plans can be created for groups of any size, age or health condition.
6. Leftovers are accounted for. Recipes with leftovers are automatically sorted into the correct meal on subsequent days. Nobody wants to cook every day and great leftovers have a place in our lives and in a healthy diet.
Here's the link to the login page:
Eat well, eat healthy, enjoy life!
October 15, 2007