Go Technological With your Nutrition, Diet and Fitness Program
With the world, literally, at our fingertips, there are some practical, helpful nutrition and fitness Apps that make everything easy – from deciphering those cryptic food labels to keeping track of how much water you’ve had. The following list is one I’ve compiled over the years. There are others – virtually countless. But the ones I have here are the ones that are in tune with eating healthy – focusing on content not numbers – staying hydrated, and finding ways to sneak movement into our everyday lives.
Fooducate: This app goes beyond calorie counts and nutritional labels. By swiping a food item’s bar code, the app will help you understand the nutritional label. It grades the food product (A to D) and offers healthier alternatives. It’s almost like having a certified dietitian in your back pocket when you go shopping. Almost. 🙂 It’s been featured in Oprah, USAToday, the NYTimes, WSJ, and on ABC, Fox and NBC among others. It also won first prize in the US Surgeon General Healthy App Challenge.
HealthyOut Healthy Meal Finder: Many of my clients eat out a lot. Because New York City is a Mecca of delectable choices, it’s often hard to stick to a diet. I love HealthyOut because it takes a client’s profile and dietary needs – whether she has Celiac or high blood pressure – and finds the best meal options in restaurants nearby (with modification suggestions). It doesn’t, however, list ingredients so if you have food sensitivities, you need to ask. This, like Fooducate, is recommended by registered nutritionists.
WaterLogged: We’ve discussed how critical hydration is for health. As a registered dietitian, one of the most common problems I see are clients who are not hydrating. Waterlogged is the ideal app to track how much water you’re drinking with the added benefit of reminders. You can graph your progress and even take a picture of the water glass you use.
Runtastic: How many steps, of the recommended 10,000, do you take in a day? As a personal trainer in NYC, this is one of the best apps I’ve found to encourage, and challenge, my clients to get into a movement mindset. This is a fantastic app to track how many steps you take during the day. It works in your pocket, purse, while being held, on a belt. And it counts steps taken, calories burned, distance covered while charting your movement and activities.
Zombies, RUN!: This popular app finds a way to turn running, walking, and jogging into a game (no matter where you are). With your buds, you’ll hear your mission and music. When you are being chased by zombies, you have to speed up, winning supplies and tools to save the human race from destruction. The storyline is fun (there are over 200). It’s fantastic for interval training. It tracks progress, steps, calories burned, and is played by over a million runners/walkers around the globe.
Charity Miles: If you’re not convinced the best way to get fit is by saving the human race from zombies, Charity Miles is another option to run, bike, and/or walk and make the world a better place. There are corporate sponsors that offer $.10 per mile on your bike and $.25 per mile walking or running. The more you walk, run, or bike, the more money you make for your selected charity. There are some kinks to work out, as the app is new on the market and trying to smooth out problems. As a registered personal trainer, this isn’t the best app to use to track progress and miles, but I do love that someone can make money for charity while walking, running, or biking every day. In the next versions, I don’t doubt they’ll make it more user friendly.
There are literally thousands of apps out there to help you reach your diet, nutrition and fitness goals. These are just a smattering of the great selection out there – ones I find practical, fun, and easy to use and apply. If these don’t work for you, try out others until you find some good fits to help you keep on track to a healthier you.