The Lose It app is a popular weight loss tracking app with over 41k reviews on the App Store. So I wanted to put it to the test to see if it met my standards as a nutrition coach for both my personal use, as well as my clients.
I’ve spent the last month using the app to track my food intake, and while there are some things that I LOVE about Lose It, there are also some drawbacks and reasons why I wouldn’t recommend it to certain groups of people.
Overall though, is the Lose It app worth it? Lose It is worth it for those who want to strictly focus on counting calories. Therefore, it’s a great option for those who have the goal of losing overall body weight. However, the free version of the app doesn’t track your macronutrient intake, which is more important for improving body composition and performance.
Overall Rating: 4.0/5
Now that I’m more familiar with the app, I can tell you who would benefit from using it and who would be better off without it.
After reading this article, you’ll learn:
- What the Lose It app is
- How the Lose It app works
- What I liked about the Lose It app
- What I didn’t like about Lose It app
- Whether or not the premium version of Lose It is worth it
What is Lose It?
Lose It is a calorie-counting app that helps predict calorie targets for users by asking them a series of questions about their lifestyles and goals. It has an extensive food database to help users easily track their daily caloric intake.
In addition to calorie counting, the app allows you to log your daily exercise either in the app itself or by connecting it to a fitness tracker like Fitbit or Apple Watch. Note, however, that this is a premium feature that isn’t available in the free version of the app.
Along with calorie counting, the app provides options to track macronutrients (carbs, fat, and protein) and other nutrients (fiber, sugar, cholesterol, and sodium), though these are also premium features.
The app is an all-encompassing tracking app, but its main focus is calorie counting, which is apparent by its emphasis on calories over macronutrients (on the free version).
Lose It: Quick Overview & My Experiences
After trying the Lose it app for a month, I’ve come to understand how the app works and whether I will use it again in the future.
I like that the app can track calories, macros (carbs, fat, protein), and some micronutrients (vitamins & minerals), but its emphasis on calories over everything else isn’t my favorite. This is because on the free version of the app, you can only track calories and not the other nutrients. Even on the premium version, you really have to dig to find out how to track your macros (it’s not obvious).
I dislike a calorie-focused app because those who emphasize calories over macros tend to be more calorie obsessed and have a higher risk of disordered eating.
When you focus on macronutrients, on the other hand, you’re still working towards a calorie goal because your nutrient targets add up to a specific calorie target, but without as much emphasis on calorie counting.
So if you’re going to use the Lose It app, I don’t think you’re going to get much value from the free version. My recommendation is to upgrade to the premium plan to get the macro tracking features. Although, as you’ll read below (in my cons section), some of the macro tracking isn’t as accurate as it should be.
Macro tracking aside, when it comes to just calorie tracking, the Lose It app is great, and extremely accurate (especially when compared with other apps like Lifesum). I know plenty of people prefer calorie counting because it’s more widely understood than macro tracking.
- Related Article: Is It Better To Hit Your Macros or Calories? (What’s Best)
Overall, I had a positive experience with the Lose It app. I thought the calorie target was accurate based on the data I provided when signing up for the app, and I enjoyed having the ability to set my macro goals on the premium version. Although the app isn’t perfect, it appears to produce great weight loss results (according to Lose It, users lose on average 35lbs after 6 months of use).
Lose It is best for those who want to focus primarily on calorie counting because its design focuses more on caloric intake than macronutrient intake. It’s an excellent option for those seeking changes in body weight.
How Does Lose It Work?
Lose It works by asking you questions about your age, height, weight, activity level, and goals to determine how many calories you should be eating, then provides you with the ability to track your intake using its food database.
The Lose It app aims to help you achieve your goal by tracking your caloric intake and adhering to a calorie target that the app deems appropriate.
There is also an option for premium users to focus on macronutrient targets (carbs, fats, and protein) if that’s important to you. The app makes recommendations for these, but you must add them to your dashboard to make them a priority.
The app’s design suggests that it is primarily a calorie-counting app and not a macro-tracking app because the macronutrient component feels more like an afterthought than the main focus.
Once you’ve been tracking your intake consistently, the app will give you an overview of how well you’ve adhered to the plan by providing “insights,” which are essentially graphs or information based on your calorie and nutrient trends over time.
These could be helpful for those who want to see how their nutrient intake changes over time.
For example, someone trying to decrease their sodium intake could see that they averaged 3,000mg of sodium per day last month but averaged 2,000mg per day this month.
What I Liked About Lose It
After a month of using the Lose It app, there are a few key things I really liked about how the app functions.
The Intake Process Was Above and Beyond
I love the intake process for this app because it is extensive and thought-provoking.
Some of the questions about your age, height, weight, and activity level are included for the app to make recommendations for you.
However, it asks other questions purely to make you reflect on why this goal is important to you, how you can set yourself up for success, why you may not have been successful in the past, and how you can learn from that experience.
I’m super impressed by these intake questions because they put you in the right mindset when you’re about to start using the app for the first time. I’m a nutrition coach, and it even got me excited about logging my food and made me think about why it is important to me.
These are such important questions, so I just wish the app did more with this information once you actually start using it, whether that be regular check-ins about how things are going based on your initial answers or some other incorporation.
It Allows You to Set Calorie and Macro Targets
I like that the Lose It app allows you to customize your calorie and macro targets because everyone is different and will have different nutritional preferences.
For example, I prefer a higher carb and lower fat intake because my body responds better to carbs. If the app suggested a higher fat and lower carb intake, and I couldn’t adjust it, I wouldn’t want to use it.
Additionally, things change over time, and it’s nice to make adjustments on the spot, especially for those working with a nutrition coach.
For example, if my nutrition client and I have our weekly check-in and we determine that progress is slower than we’d like, I would adjust the client’s calorie and macro targets, and they would have to adjust this in their tracking app.
You Can Customize Other Nutrient Targets
I also appreciate that besides carbs, protein, and fats, you can set goals for saturated fat, sodium, cholesterol, fiber, and sugar because these are other key nutrients for your health that are often disregarded.
Setting targets for these nutrients is great for those who have been advised to decrease their saturated fat, sugar, sodium, or cholesterol intake or those who need to increase their fiber intake.
As a nutrition coach, if I notice that one of my clients is over- or under-consuming one of these nutrients, I would want to set a goal for them to work towards to improve. Having these targets in a tracking app makes it much easier for them to work toward those goals.
The Calorie Calculations Seem Accurate
The calorie calculations were fairly accurate because they recommended an appropriate intake that I would prescribe for myself as a nutrition coach.
For reference, my maintenance calories (the number of calories it takes to maintain my weight) is 2300 calories, so a 50- to 500-calorie deficit is appropriate for me without sacrificing muscle mass.
To lose weight, the app recommended I eat 1902 calories, which is approximately a 400-calorie deficit. Theoretically, this would allow me to lose 0.8lbs per week (1lb loss = 3500 calorie deficit per week), which is a healthy rate of loss.
Remember, I’m a nutrition coach, so I know how many calories are appropriate for me to maintain and lose weight.
It Can Send Out Daily or Weekly Nutrition Reports to Your Coach
One of the best features of this app is that it gives you the option to send out daily and weekly reports containing a nutrition summary and complete food log, which is a nutrition coach’s dream.
Many nutrition-tracking apps don’t have this feature, so for me to evaluate a client’s nutrition, they have to screenshot the app or rewrite their food journal for me, which is a hassle.
With the Lose It app, a client can schedule a weekly report to be automatically sent to my email, making everyone’s lives easier on check-in day.
Note that this feature is also only available to premium users.
What I Didn’t Like About Lose It
Although there are many things I like about the app, there are things I wish it would improve.
The Macronutrient Targets Weren’t Accurate
When I first started using the Lose It app, I didn’t think there were macronutrient recommendations because they don’t appear on the dashboard. To see them, you must add them to your dashboard by selecting them as “favorites.”
Once I noticed this, I saw that macro targets were recommended to me based on the data I had input during the sign-up process.
The issue with these targets was that they didn’t actually add up to my recommended calorie target provided by the app.
My calorie target was 1902 calories (which I approve of), but my macronutrient targets were 72 grams of protein, 261 grams of carbs, and 58 grams of fat.
For reference, protein and carbs have 4 calories per gram, and fats have 9 calories per gram.
So if you do the math:
- 72g x 4 = 288 calories
- 261g x 4 = 1044 calories
- 58g x 9 = 522 calories
288 + 1044 + 522 = 1854 total calories
My calorie target was supposed to be 1902, but if I tracked my macros, I would only be eating 1854. This doesn’t make any sense because there’s no way I could achieve my calorie target and my macro target.
Aside from these recommendations just not adding up to my recommended calorie target, the protein recommendation is extremely low.
For reference, an adequate protein intake for active people is 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight.
I weigh 160lbs, so my protein intake should be around 160 grams, but the app only recommended 72 grams. If I were to eat this, I would absolutely lose muscle mass, burn fewer calories throughout the day, and look less lean.
- Related Article: Do Macros Matter for Weight Loss? (Yes, Here’s Why)
The Macro Targets You Set Don’t Have to Equate to Your Calorie Target
Another thing I didn’t like about the app is that although you have the ability to customize your macronutrient intake, it doesn’t have any guidelines for making your macros add up to your calorie target.
I don’t know why I was taken aback by this after discovering that the macros targets it recommended didn’t add up to the calorie target it recommended either, but I was still surprised.
Typically, calorie and macro trackers will have a feature that allows you to adjust your macro targets only to amounts that will add up to your calorie target. This is because your macro targets need to equal out to your calorie target for you to meet both goals.
Using the calorie recommendation it provided (1902), I should be able to set my macro targets to 160g of protein, 185g of carbs, and 58g of fat because these targets add up to 1902 calories.
But the app shouldn’t let me set my targets to 200g of protein, 300g of carbs, and 70g of fat, which adds up to 2630 calories, and it does.
Those who are just starting to macro track won’t know that the macro targets the app recommends aren’t accurate or how to adjust their macros themselves while staying true to the calorie target.
It Defaults to Adding Calories Back in For Exercise Logged
The last thing I didn’t like about the app was that if you log exercise into the app, it adds the number of calories you burned back into your calorie goal for the day. This feature shouldn’t exist, given that this is a weight loss app.
To lose weight, you need to be in a caloric deficit, meaning that you need to take in fewer calories than you burn. This allows your body to use its own resources (preferably fat) for energy.
But if you’re not allowing yourself to achieve a deficit because you’re eating back the calories you burned, your body won’t have to use its fat for fuel, and you won’t lose weight.
This feature sets users up for failure, especially if they don’t realize that it’s happening and don’t know how to turn it off. When you go to log your exercise into the app, there is a button at the bottom that says “exclude from total calories” that you have to click each time to turn off this feature.
Key Features & Benefits of Lose It
The key features and benefits of Lose It are:
- User-friendly interface
- Large food database
- Ability to customize intake
- Social network
The Lose It app has a very user-friendly interface that allows you to customize the app to look and function based on your preferences. You can adjust your dashboard to include calories, macros, or other nutrients based on what you consider a priority.
Additionally, there are many themes you can pick from to make the app your own: Aqua, Baby Goats, Christmas, Dogs, Space, and many others. I like the effort the developers have put into getting the user more excited about using the app.
Overall, I think the app is easy to use and is elevated by its customization features.
Large Food Database
Lose It has 34 million foods, including both verified and unverified foods, that users have access to for tracking their intake.
Typically, verified foods are foods that have come from a food database that has been verified by registered dietitians to contain accurate nutritional information.
However, Lose It’s verified foods are apparently just foods its team has verified themselves. This makes me a bit nervous because I prefer when foods are verified by a third party.
Unverified foods are created by the app’s users and are more likely to be incorrect because it’s easy to make a mistake when adding a custom food.
I do really like that you can customize your food search to apply only to verified foods if you prefer to stick to those over unverified foods (I sure do).
Foods with green checkmarks have been verified by the Lose It team, and foods without checkmarks have been created by users and have a higher risk of being inaccurate.
Ability To Customize Intake
Another key feature of the Lose It app is your ability to customize your calorie, macro, sodium, sugar, fiber, and cholesterol intake.
Setting targets around these nutrients is beneficial for those who know how much they should be consuming and just want a way to easily track their intake.
The ability to customize within the app isn’t perfect because of its lack of guidance with this, as I discussed earlier, but customizability is something that I look for in a tracking app.
One of the app’s features that I think people will appreciate is the community aspect it’s achieved by including a social network directly in the app where users can communicate back and forth for support, advice, and encouragement.
Having a large support network is important for people to reach their goals, particularly those who feel they aren’t supported by their loved ones in pursuing their goals.
This social network adds a ton of value to the app, especially if the user is willing to put themself out there and engage with the community.
What Other Customers Think
After I formed my own opinion of the app, I wanted to see what other users had to say about it. I went through the Google Reviews of the app to learn about other users’ experiences.
The app has an impressive 4.5/5 stars from 126,533 reviews, which is a great rating. It will be interesting to see how this rating changes as the number of reviews increases.
The negative complaints focused solely on the app glitching and membership changes. Many people had issues with the app freezing or acting up, but I never had any glitches occur while using it, so it seems like Lose It may have fixed this issue.
The membership complaints were mainly from users who had previously used the app while all its features were free and now have to pay for features they previously used without having to pay. While I understand the frustration, it’s also important to understand that most other tracking apps do charge for premium features.
Surprisingly, there were hardly any complaints about inaccurate nutritional information despite having a large user-created food database. Generally, apps that allow users to create foods have many complaints about inaccurate nutrition information due to the larger margin of error with unverified foods.
Takeaway: Although the app isn’t perfect, it appears to produce great weight loss results.
How Much Does Lose It Cost?
The Lose It app has a free version that allows you to use basic calorie counting functions like logging your food. There is also a premium version that allows you to use all of the app’s premium features (which I’ll discuss next).
Lose It Premium has 2 different payment plans:
- Premium Membership (Yearly)
- Lifetime Membership (One-Time Payment)
The yearly membership plan will cost you $39.99 USD, which equals $3.33 USD per month.
The Lifetime payment plan will cost you $189.99 USD for lifetime access to the app’s premium features.
There doesn’t appear to be a monthly subscription to the Lose It app. A monthly subscription would be more attractive because it would give you more time to decide whether the app is appropriate for you before committing to a year of premium access.
There is a 7-day free trial that you can use to see if the premium version is worth it for you, but I still think a monthly membership is necessary instead of trying it for 7 days and then having to commit to a year.
Should You Use Lose It Premium?
The premium version of the Lose It app is worth it if you’re going to use the app long-term, want to be able to link your fitness tracker to the app, customize calorie and nutrient targets, and log meals and exercise in advance to plan ahead.
If you don’t see yourself using this app long-term, the premium version isn’t for you because you have to commit to a year if you’re signing up for premium.
The free version is sufficient if you just want the basic functions of calorie tracking using the app’s recommendation and food database.
If you’re still unsure, try out the 7-day free trial of premium to gauge whether you feel it’s worth it.
Initially, longtime Lose It users were upset about the app starting to offer a premium membership, but the Lose It team did a great job explaining why this was a natural next step for the app and why the premium subscription benefits its users here.
Who Should Use Lose It?
Lose It is a great app for those who want to exclusively count calories because the calorie calculations are on point and the food database has plenty of verified foods to ensure that the calories you’re logging are accurate.
The app is designed with calorie counting in mind, so it will function perfectly for those who solely want to count calories rather than macros.
Those who are more likely interested in calorie counting are those who want to lose weight but don’t care about exercise performance, maintaining or gaining muscle mass, or looking toned.
Who Should NOT Use Lose It
The Lose It app isn’t the best option for those who want to track macros over calories because the app is built to support calorie counting over macronutrient tracking.
A prime example of this is that the app allows you to adjust your macronutrient targets without them having to add up to your calorie target.
This is most likely because the macronutrient component was an afterthought, and the team just added it because of the popularity of macro tracking. It doesn’t feel very well thought out.
Although this isn’t an issue for those who are more educated on macronutrients and can do their own calculations to ensure their macro targets are also meeting their caloric requirements, most people aren’t at this level.
Those who are likely more interested in macro tracking than calorie counting are those who have performance goals, want to maintain or gain muscle mass, and look toned.
Sign Up For Lose It
The sign-up process for the Lose It app was very straightforward, but it does take a bit longer than other tracking apps because of its in-depth questionnaire.
The longer sign-up process is completely worth it because I love the questions being asked, but make sure you have around 5 to 10 minutes to spare when you sign up.
The app will first prompt you to create an account with an email and password before it beings prompting you for information.
Once your account has been created, it will ask you questions about the following categories:
- History (have you tried to lose weight before?)
- Data (age, height, weight, activity level)
- Motivation (why do you want to lose weight? what results are most important to you?)
- Goal (what is your goal? What rate of loss do you prefer?)
- Habits (cooking skills, weekend habits, emotional eating)
- Environment (how much support do you have while working towards your goal?)
- Strategy (how will you recognize success?)
After you’ve answered the questions, the app will take you to your dashboard and give you a quick walkthrough on how to log your food.
Lose It Alternatives
The Lose It app alternative that I would recommend is MacroFactor because I think it’s one of the best calorie and macro tracking apps on the market.
MacroFactor is an app with a macro-tracking focus that’s perfect for those who want to ensure they’re consuming adequate amounts of each nutrient.
What’s unique about the MacroFactor app is that it’s perfect for both those who are new to tracking and those who have been tracking for years.
The app allows you to decide how much work you want it to do for you: all of it (the app adjusts everything for you), some of it (you can make adjustments if you want), or none of it (you have complete control).
It also has the largest food database that’s been verified by a registered dietitian, so you can track your intake without worrying about it being inaccurate.
The second best alternative for the Lose It app is the Lifesum app, which is perfect for those who are capable of making their own calorie and macro adjustments or those working with a nutrition coach.
The Lifesum app has a ton of delicious recipes to choose from that can keep you inspired and loving the food you’re eating.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Lose It Good For Weight Loss?
Lose It is good for weight loss because its recommended calorie targets are reasonable based on a healthy rate of weight loss, and according to the reviews, most users achieved their weight loss goal using the app.
Is Lose It Free?
Lose It has a free version with basic calorie tracking functions, but to get access to the app’s full capabilities, you need to purchase the premium version or try the 7-day free trial of premium.
Is Lose It Compatible With Apple Watch?
Lose It is compatible with Apple Watch, as well as Fitbit, Garmin, Google Fit, Run Keeper, Nike+ Running, and a few others. However, pairing to a fitness tracker is a premium feature within the app, so the free version of the app won’t be sufficient.
Is Lose It Accurate?
The Lose It app’s calorie calculations were accurate, but the macronutrient recommendations were not at all accurate. The macronutrient intake it recommended didn’t add up to the calorie target it recommended.
How Do I Cancel My Lose It Subscription?
To cancel your Lose It subscription on your phone, you can remove it as a subscription in Google Play or Apple iTunes. If you use the desktop version of Lose It, you can sign into your account on your computer, click settings, and unsubscribe there.
How To Contact Lose It?
You can contact the Lose It support team in the app by clicking your profile picture in the right-hand corner, scrolling to the bottom of the list, and choosing between the “help center” or “ask a question” buttons. Alternatively, head to this webpage.
Lose It is best for those who want to focus primarily on calorie counting because its design focuses more on caloric intake than macronutrient intake. It’s an excellent option for those seeking changes in body weight.
About The Author
Amanda Parker is an author, nutrition coach, and Certified Naturopath. She works with bodybuilders, Olympic weightlifters, and powerlifters to increase performance through nutrition and lifestyle coaching.