Fooducate Turns Your Smartphone Into a Nutritionist, Now Supports Android Ice Cream Sandwich

Going on a diet doesn’t actually mean that you don’t have to eat anything. Instead, we need to be selective with what we eat. Go for better, cleaner and healthier foods. Here’s where Fooducate comes in. Fooducate is an Android app that helps us health buffs ensure the food we eat is healthy and fresh.

Android users can scan product barcodes through their Android smartphone cameras, and Fooducate will show the product ingredients, and allows users to find alternatives, if needed.

When you’re surrounded by the food industry’s marketing hype, confused by a bunch of ingredients, bombarded by weight-reduction products and crash-course weight-loss programs, it’s pretty difficult to define what good food is. On the other hand, those who are already undergoing a diet would want to keep track of what they eat.

Through Fooducate, the smartphone’s camera will work as barcode scanner. The app already has a database of 200,000 products, which is still growing. For the time being, though, Fooducate is available in the U.S. only.

Once a product barcode is scanned, Fooducate shows information beyond ingredients, which is the main rationale behind the app. Product labels would already include ingredients, but Fooducate would explain hidden items such as excessive sugar, tricky trans fats, additives and preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, controversial food coloring, calories per actual serving size (the most important factor, especially for women), and many more. It really makes us aware of the bad stuff that’s put in most processed foods.

If something isn’t found in the database, users may want to take pictures and send it over for the developer to continually update information on products. Undoubtedly, this app is very useful for nutrition and for informative shopping. The app’s independence is maintained, since no funding or sponsorship is ever received from the industry players.

Forty-four percent of smart phone users in the U.S. have a health-related app and 17 million people have gathered health information from their phones last year, according to a recent ComScore report. As of now, Fooducate has been downloaded millions of times and used by around 500,000 people every week. Seventy-five percent of users are female and 35% have at least one child living at home. A recent survey of 15,000 users shows that 80% have selected healthier alternatives at least once after using the app. Meanwhile, half said that the app caused them to try a product for the first time.

Fooducate is currently at version is 1.22, and the 3.7 MB download introduces a tweaked UI, improved product recommendations, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) support, and bug fixes. Android OS 2.2 (FroYo) and up is required. Seeing the features and benefits, surely it’s a worth waiting app for Asian users. Take a look at the iOS version here.