Useful Health Apps for Smartphone Users

by Ann Fleming

With the world going ‘mobile’ everyone is carrying a smartphone of some type to access anything from emails to photos to Facebook and shopping lists and everything in between.

To that end, if everyone is carrying around their mobile device, how can that same device be utilized to help people that are trying to be more health conscious? There are hundreds of free mobile apps to assist with common health issues such as glucose monitoring, carb counters, weight loss and so much more.

Below is a list of our favorite health apps that will help making healthy and focused living that much easier. After all, everyone needs a friendly nudge now and then.

Couch-To-5K

At a mere $1.99 this app is worth every penny. The goal is simple: it encourages beginners to get off the couch and onto the road.

I’ve never been a runner, in fact the very thought used to make me shudder, but this app has helped me to get up and go but at a steady rate that wasn’t overwhelming.

App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Android phone and tablet.

iTriage

itriage appI can’t be the only person that’s been told by my doctor to stop using the Internet to diagnose my health symptoms, but there are times that it is simply too hard to resist. Over the years I have quickly jumped to the wrong conclusion when comparing symptoms and needlessly stressed myself out.

There’s a reason we’re supposed to leave the diagnosing to the doctors! That said, the iTriage app answers two fundamental health concerns, “What could be wrong?” and “Where should I go for treatment?”

But that’s not all; the app also contains a running list of thousands of medications and uses, symptoms and more.

Free. App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Android phone and tablet.

411Fit

Don’t let healthy eating habits fall to the wayside while out and about.

With a database of more than 250,000 food items, this app will help you to make better food choices and see the impact of those better choices.

Free. App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Android phone and tablet.

Lose it

loseit appNew Year’s resolutions are just around the corner, this year has been flying by! It’s also at that time that everyone hits the scales and promises to ‘diet’. The Lose It! App helps the user to set daily calorie goals while also keeping track of food intake and exercise among other functions.

One of the biggest tips for losing weight by the experts is writing down your daily eating and exercising habits and this app makes it as easy as it can be.

Free. App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.

iChemoDiary

ichemotherapy appWe hope you never need this app, but if you do it can be helpful.

It’s capable of streamlining the process of recording chemotherapy schedules, symptoms, treatment dates/times and more so that you can be prepared at your next doctor’s visit.

Free. App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.

Glucose Buddy App

glucosebuddy appSobering statistics by The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), estimates that 25.8 million people have diabetes.

This app can and should quickly become a diabetics’ useful friend. It includes an A1C calculator, graphs, logbook, print outs for your doctor and more.

The app also includes reminders that work even if the app isn’t running.

Free. App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.

Fooducate

foodeducate appThe LoseIt app and this app work well together. It includes an extensive database of at least 200,000 foods and the list is growing.

A few of our favorite features are the nutrition grades and the positives and negatives about specific food items. Most people are stunned to discover just how bad their daily food choices really are.

The same app maker has also created a diabetic specific app – Diabetes by Fooducate .

Free. App is available for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Also with Android phone and tablet.

The majority of mobile carries have unlimited cell phone plans which is a definite plus with so many people being being attached to their smartphones and mobile devices which is prime for health monitoring. But the user needs to initiate the process by downloading and setting up the right apps.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), is now getting involved and overseeing health and medical apps. It’s still a relatively new area, but the agency is setting up guidelines that developers must meet. According to the FDA, some 40,000 medical apps are currently available to for smartphones and tablets and that number will grow exponentially in the coming months.

Take a look around the App store and you will find just about any app you need to get fit, from BMI Calculator to Instant Heart Rate and there are thousands more.

The excuses are running out, with the use of free apps, being healthy on a budget can be done and it can be done well! Get a jumpstart on that New Year’s resolution and make a lifestyle change not a rash promise that you make every year and usually don’t follow.

Important note: While smartphone apps are indeed helpful, they do not replace the advice of a medical doctor. If you have a serious medical concern, you should consult your physician immediately. You should also consult your physician before starting any new diet regimen.

(Ann Fleming is a freelance writer for bbgeeks.com. She has a knack for clarifying the more complex side of technology and how to use it for the average person, from finding the best cell phone plans to must use mobile apps and more. When she’s not obsessed with the newest gadget, Ann is chasing her young son around the house or hiking nearby Camelback Peak.)

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About Health on a Budget

We provide resources to eat and live healthy on a budget.

2 Responses to “Useful Health Apps for Smartphone Users”

  1. Hi Ann,
    I would like to introduce you to an application for iPhone which has benn mede available today in iTunes.

    The application monitors the Coherence between the heart rate and the breath of the users.

    More information can be found at http://heartrateplus.com
    Feel free to contact me if you need further information.

    Regards,

    Michele

  2. Thanks, Michele! I will be sure to check it out, thanks for taking the time to post :)

    Ann