Naming New Foods and Recipes


For ease in finding them later, foods and recipes that you add to the dictionaries should be named according to the same rules Diet Power uses:


1. Start the item's description with its most basic name. Usually, this will be a single noun. If your recipe is for a low-fat caesar salad with anchovies and black olives, for example, the basic name would be saladnot caesar or anchovies or olives or low-fat.


2. After the basic name, add a comma and a space, then the most general modifier. In the example cited above, it would be caesar.


3. Continue to add more modifiers (also separated by commas and spaces), moving from the general to the specific: "Salad, caesar, with anchovies and black olives, low-fat."


4. Follow this basic description with modifiers that describe preparation: chopped, whipped, boiled, raw, etc.


5. Add the brand name (always in parentheses). (For recipes, use your own name or Aunt Sally's, if that's whose recipe it is, or the title of the cookbook you got it from.)


6. Try to insert a phrase relating the food's volume to its weight"4.9 oz per cup," for example. That way, you'll be able to measure your portions by either method.


7. Finally, if the item is a recipe, make sure the description mentions the serving size. Reason: when you call up a recipe to record it in your Food Log, the number and units for the item will say only "1 svg"and you may not remember how big a serving that means. To prevent frustration, just include in the description a phrase like "3-oz svg" or "1/2-c svg."

If you run out of room (the limit is 90 characters), feel free to abbreviate, but try to observe the same conventions that Diet Power uses. This will cut your risk of missing the food in searches. The main rules:


   A word that's abbreviated in a certain way is never abbreviated in any other way. If you find "flr" for "flour" in the Cakes category, for example, you can be certain it won't appear in some other category as "fl"it will always be "flour" or "flr." (For a list of standard abbreviations, see Abbreviations, Food.)


   If you must abbreviate, start with the last words in the food's description and work toward the beginning, stopping as soon as the description becomes short enough to fit. If you need to remove three letters from "Cauliflower, frozen, boiled, with butter," for example, you have a choice of abbreviating "frozen" as "frz" or "butter" as "btr". The better choice is "btr," because abbreviations that lie closer to the end of a description are less likely to throw a list out of alphabetical order.