FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

About six years ago I made the decision to change my life.  Being an athlete all of my life, I was pushed to get bigger and had always consumed a lot of calories since I burned so many.  When I began coaching, I spent all of my time teaching others how to be athletes, and there was no time to do my own sports.  I tried many dieting options with no luck until I tried the Atkins plan.  Long story short, I lost 100 pounds and got back into shape.  I now live a low-carb lifestyle and have maintained my weight for a long time.  When I buy food, carbs, sugars and artificial sweeteners are my main concern.  Some labels are not the easiest to read regardless of your eating style or needs.

FoodEssentials Scanner easily solves the problem of searching the labels for what is inside your foods.  Using your iPhone camera, you can scan the bar code on most foods to see what is in the food.  Whether you are watching what you eat like I do, or you have food-based allergies, this app will quickly and easily help you decide what foods are okay to eat.


– Scan single or multiple barcodes in the store or at home
– Search for products by keyword

– The database has been increased and scan success rate improved to 70%
– 160,000+ commercially available product database
– view allergen, additive, ingredient or nutrient properties
View Label
– Customize your label view to include the properties relevant to you
– Traffic light system quickly identifies things to watch out for
– Include any of 30,000+ ingredients as a variable on your label view
– Learn about the different ingredients and their ¨also known as¨ names

– 30,000+ ingredients, 4000 unique ingredients, over 1million ingredient properties

– Shellfish has been added as an allergen
– Scan multiple similar food products to compare them side by side
– Scroll through the similar list of food products and compare the labels side by side
– ¨shake¨ your iPhone to reduce the list of products to only the ones you have highlighted
My Lists
– All products scanned or searched are automatically saved as a history
– Edit and manage your list of products

FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

Just like other label scanners, you line the bar code up inside the bracketed target.  The difference in this app is the fact that it is lightning fast.  The code is zapped almost instantly when aligning on the screen.  I assume it is probably faster with the 3GS due to auto-focus and faster processor.  I had a hard time getting a screen shot because the code would pass through the target and register before I could push the buttons.

FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

Once the code is scanned, the app will perform a short search before displaying all of the information.  Most all name brand food products were discovered, but some off-brand and regional items were not, which is understandable.  Once an item successfully scans, it is kept in a database for searching later.  This allows to check the ingredients at another date and also allows the user to scan many items during a shopping trip to look at later.

FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

If the item does not register, there is a search function.  Even though you may not find the exact brand of item, finding a similar food may find the allergen or ingredient being searched for.  This also allows for searching foods prior to shopping which is convenient.

FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

Once an item is scanned, a ton of information is revealed.  Nutrients, allergens, additives and ingredients are all listed. A colored dot will accompany each item using red, yellow and green.  These acts as alerts for the amount or the item in the food.  Clicking on the item also gives suggested daily amounts and extra information.  All of this information is customizable to the user’s specifications.

FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review

FoodEssentials Scanner has been extremely handy for me since I am a label reader in the supermarket.  I get carb and sugar information quickly and save the amounts for later shopping trips.  The speed of the app is impressive and accuracy has been spot on.  If you have allergies or just like to see what you are eating, this app is a great tool.  Get it here in the app store for $4.99.

What I like: SPEED!  Accurate data on need-to-know food items.

What could be improved: The ability to manually add bar codes and products.

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About the Author

Travis Ehrlich
Travis is a high school teacher and coach in a small South Texas town. His love for gadgets began at a very early age, and he has been a cross between a jock and a geek for most of his life. He has two boys and a wonderful wife who lets him be a gadget freak. He is a Mac convert and has drank the whole pitcher of Kool-Aid! He is also an avid guitar player and loves the outdoors, especially hunting with both a bow and rifle.

10 Comments on "FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone Review"

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  4. topsy_top20k | April 19, 2010 at 2:48 am |

    Review: FoodEssentials Scanner for iPhone

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