Following is an article written by the incredible Meena Sreenivasan. Featured in the NST on the 2nd Feb 2009. You can view the NST version here.
Health portal cekodok.com makes counting calories easy, writes MEENA SREENIVASAN.
YOU are on a strict diet but you cheated last night, polishing off a plate of nasi lemak followed by a glass of teh tarik for supper.
How do you know how many calories you have consumed so you can burn them off at the gym today? Easy. Just log on to cekodok.com.
Launched in November, cekodok.com is a free Malaysian food calorie database. Not just a comprehensive calorie-counting tool for local food, the portal also gives information on calories for food eaten elsewhere in the world.
According to its founder, fitness and nutrition consultant Kevin Zahri: “We have developed a comprehensive calorie guide based on local foods. Future plans include more diet tools which are free, such as an interactive meal planner, fitness regimes, video guides and an e-Book, this month.
“Our objective is simple. We wish to provide people worldwide with free tools and information to improve their general health and well-being,” said Kevin, a Malaysian fitness celebrity.
…our objective is simple. We wish to provide people worldwide with free tools and information to improve their general health and well-being…
He added that the portal aims to be a fun site.
With the help of sponsors, Kevin aims to organise free monthly public health and fitness awareness seminars.
Why the domain name cekodok.com for a health website?
“It’s short and catchy. I didn’t want something too generic. After all, the website is not about perfection, but more about balance in life.
“It’s okay to eat cekodok (fried banana balls), which is sweet and oily, as long as it’s in moderation. The cool thing about the website is that you are able to share the platform established in Malaysia with the rest of the world.”
How does it work?
Cekodok.com categorises food based on description and calculates their calorific value.
“For example, there are different categories of food such as mamak food, rice or pasta, and the website lists the fat, carbohydrate and protein content.
“For example, when you eat a roti canai, you consume about 300 calories, but then again, it depends on how it’s prepared and cooked.”
Kevin said his interactive meal planner enables him to share it with others, who, in turn, will be able to share their secrets and tools with him.
Free Fitness Analysis Tools
Another useful instrument at cekodok.com is the Fitness Analysis. Based on your weight, age, height, sex and level of activity, you can calculate your BMR (basal metabolic rate) and the number of calories you need in a day. It also lists the number of calories you need to burn to lose weight.
Note: The fitness analysis tool is not yet available. Release is planner for Q1 2009.
“From your BMR, you can get your DCR (Daily Calorie Requirement); BMI (Body Mass Index) — whether you are obese, overweight, underweight or normal; and your activity factor.
“Then you will be able to calculate how many calories your body actually needs. With this information, you can have your recommended meal plan based on your goal — be it weight gain, weight loss or just maintaining your weight.”
Educational Health Videos
Kevin hopes to include educational articles and short video clips on exercise and fitness.
“I also intend to come up with the second edition of my book Fitness 24/7 and the Malay version, Cergas 24/7, both launched last year.
“My goal is to attain international recognition and reach out to the Middle East and publish Fitness for Islam, a book about food, exercise and lifestyle.