I Tried AVA for a month,

and here's how it went

 
 

Let me start out by saying that I think I have tried everything when it comes to losing weight and eating healthy - I just can't seem to stick to a plan. I always start off great, but then I have a weak moment and things fall apart.

A friend of mine told me that she had discovered a service called AVA, and said she loved it. I had noticed that she was looking like she had lost some weight, so I was interested and decided to give it a try.

Signing Up

At first, I was a little caught off guard by the price. Every other nutrition app I had tried was either free or only a few dollars a month. "$60 a month? Seems pretty steep for an app" I thought. I decided that I'd give it a try for a month since my friend insisted that it was worth it (it also helped that my friend gave me a coupon code for 30% off!)

The sign-up process was pretty straightforward. There were a few different types of programs to select, I decided to just go with the standard weight loss program. I've heard great things about the Ketogenic diet for weight loss, but I didn't think I could get into something that complex. All of the programs start on Monday, so I picked the closest Monday (it was Thursday when I signed up), entered my payment info, and was told I was all set and would hear from AVA before the program started.

Getting Started

The next day (Friday), I received a text message from AVA with a link to download their app and an activation code I needed in order to use the app. I also received an email from AVA with an outline of what the next couple of weeks would look like.

I quickly got the app set up and within a few minutes I was texting back and forth with AVA, learning how to use all the important features so that I would be able to really hit the ground running on Monday.

 
 

Sign-up page where I began the registration process

Diving In

I started by sending in a picture of my breakfast - nothing exciting, just a bowl of cereal. AVA responded within a few minutes, giving me a calorie and macro-nutrient estimate. They even knew it was Raisin Bran! Then I got a message from AVA about my breakfast choice, along with a suggestion to add some fresh fruit next time. I had thought that AVA was some sort of bot, but I became suspicious during this conversation that I was talking to a human, it just seemed too real. Turns out I was right, I asked AVA if she was a bot and she responded that "she" is actually a human - there are actual real-life nutritionists and dietitians working behind the scenes and doing a lot of the communication. 

Menu recommendation screen

 

A couple of things that my friend had told me about were menu recommendations and recipe recommendations that AVA provides whenever you ask.

I did a little searching through the app and found the menu recommendations where AVA searches restaurants around you and provides recommendations based on your diet, goals, restrictions, etc. Fortunately, my favorite lunch spot, Panera, came back (the recommendations were a lot healthier than I usually get).

The recipe recommendation was just as easy and just as cool. I