Fitness & Exercise
The 11 Best Healthy Lifestyle iPhone and Android Apps of 2013
The Best Healthy Lifestyle Apps
If a mobile app can help you turn on your house alarm, start your car, and pay your bills, one can certainly help you live a healthier life. These lifestyle apps are designed to help you do the basic things well—and make them easier in the process. Here are 12 of the most popular apps that can help you live a healthier life starting today.
Sleep Talk Recorder
Ever wondered if you’re accidentally telling all your secrets while you sleep? MadInSweden’s sound-recording app lets you know what you’re saying or sharing while you’re getting some shut eye.
The app doesn’t record continuously. A filtered sound system detects what’s happening in your nighttime environment and quickly alerts the app to begin recording. You can save your favorite or funniest moments and even listen to other users’ noteworthy moments, too. You might even realize you have a sleep disorder, like apnea, and can use the recording to talk with your doctor about your symptoms.
iPhone user Guyonabuffalos says, “It’s very easy to use, and it automatically sorts out the points of interest throughout the recording so you don’t have to listen to the whole thing to get the good stuff. I’ve always been curious about my sleep talking, now I can hear it for myself.” As a bonus, the app works as an alarm clock, too. After all, you’ve got to wake up to hear what you said.
Pocket First Aid & CPR
Quick: What do you do if you or someone you’re with gets a snakebite? You don’t know? This app from the American Heart Association does. The Pocket First Aid & CPR app walks you through the most common first-aid scenarios, such as choking, burns, bites, and even diabetic emergencies. It provides step-by-step instructions and videos. The App also has emergency CPR and AED information if you need to provide life-saving measures.
Moms and dads, this app can also come in handy if you need help keeping track of your kids’ medicines, allergies, or doctors’ phone numbers. You can create medical profiles for each member of your family and save all their necessary medical information.
Symple - Symptom Tracker
iPhone – 4.5 stars with 124 ratings – $1.99
For people with many chronic diseases—and even for those without—keeping track of symptoms and warning signs can help you and your doctors reach a diagnosis. It can also help with revising a treatment plan more specifically and quickly. Need to monitor how a medicine makes you feel for a month or more? This app can help you do just that. You can also keep track of how often you exercise, record what medicines you’ve taken and how often you’ve taken them, or even note factors that might have helped ease your symptoms. Take your phone with you to your next appointment, and go over your history with your doctor. Together, the two of you may be able to identify triggers that make conditions worse or treatments that make it better.
(Note: The app only allows you to monitor one person’s symptoms at a time.)
Drugs.com Medication Guide
Keep all your prescription information in one place. If you’re tired of writing down prescription numbers, pharmacy numbers, and refill dates on random pieces of paper, this app from the folks at Drugs.com can help you keep track of your medicine digitally. Enter each medicine you take, the conditions you’re treating, any allergies you may have, and then use the app to manage your meds.
Got a headache and wondering if you can take Tylenol with your prescriptions? Use the app to check for potential negative interactions between meds and potential side effects. The app can also help you identify medicines by color, look, and markings.
iPhone – 4 stars – Free
Cancer treatment is a difficult period in anyone’s life. You, your family members, and your caretakers need all the help you can get. This app, designed under the guidance of physicians at the Stanford Cancer Institute, can keep track of appointments, names, places, scheduled procedures, and medicines. You can record memos or even entire doctor’s appointments. Track tests and their results. Read through treatment articles and frequently asked questions answered by the National Cancer Institute. Maybe most importantly of all, however, is the help you can find from the Avva community. You’ll go through a lot during your treatment, from hair loss to post-chemo sickness. People going through the same thing you are can be a resource and source of encouragement.
Need to keep track of side effects from your treatments or medicines? You can use this app to do just that. You can also share the information with your doctors so the two of you can adjust treatments as needed.
Whole Foods Market Recipes
iPhone – 3 stars with 685 ratings – Free
Healthy eating is a cornerstone of a healthy life, and healthy eating starts at home. Cooking meals is one of the best ways to guarantee you’ll be consuming delicious, nutritious meals that you and your family will love. Your phone can be a great tool in helping you keep creative recipes flowing and grocery lists going.
Search the recipe index on the Whole Foods Market Recipes App to find tonight’s dinner. Save the recipe, create a shopping list from it, and shop from your list while you’re at the store. Or use one of two unique aspects of the app: see what’s on sale at your local store and create a menu, or use the On-Hands search tool to find recipes that use the ingredients you have on hand already. If you find a favorite, you can save it for future reference so you’ll be able to find it easily.
The technology that revolutionized GPS driving systems can keep you active and healthy. Turn the Garmin Fit app on before you head out for your next run, walk, or cycle. It will be able to tell you how long you’ve been going, how far you’ve gone, what your speed is, and how many calories you’ve burned. For runners training for a race, you can see your progress—the app saves all your sessions. Also, when you activate the option, friends and family members can track you while you run. This function is great for a race or for safety if you’re out and about on your own.
For the ultimate in connectivity, you can sync your phone’s app with Garmin fitness sensors to get more accurate information.
A little medical advice is always helpful when your child is sick. The American Academy of Pediatrics created the KidsDoc app to help you analyze what your child’s symptoms mean, decide the best treatment, and know when to seek emergency help.
Pick your child’s predominant symptom, such as vomiting, or select an area of your child’s body that hurts. Photos help you decide if symptoms match potential causes; a definition tells you other symptoms your child may be experiencing. Based on your child’s problem, the app can tell you when to seek emergency care and how to know if the condition is getting worse and needs medical attention. If it’s something you can treat, the app gives you step-by-step instructions and illustrations to take care of your child. A helping hand is never a bad thing.
My Diet Coach
One of the hardest parts of dieting is finding the motivation to keep going when things get hard. My Diet Coach App is designed to be your cheerleader and help you beat all the potential hazards that could put a damper on your diet dreams. Got a food craving? Give yourself the food craving 15, in which a stopwatch times you for 15 minutes. Wait 15 minutes and see if you’re really still craving that food. The app can also give you motivational tips, suggestions, or thought cues to help you beat the craving or find motivation.
This isn’t an all-in-one diet app, however. You can’t track your exercise, weight, or your food. It’s all about motivation.
iPhone – 5 stars with 40,253 ratings – Free
Sometimes the word “smartphone” might seem like an oxymoron. We’ve shortened much of our communication to 140-character tweets or sentence-long status updates. But your phone could actually make you smarter—at least that’s the goal of this app. Lumosity uses games and quizzes to sharpen your brain and cognitive skills through daily exercises.
If you have a membership to Lumosity.com, you can use all features of the app for free. Your scores from your phone app will sync with scores from games played on the web site. Non-members will be prompted to buy a membership often and won’t have access to all the games members do.
iPhone – 4 stars with 909 ratings – Free
If your phone is always on your hip or in your pocket, you can let it help you live a healthier life. The Moves App works as a pedometer while you walk, run, or cycle. Using GPS, your phone can recognize where you are and create a point in the timeline of your day. It’s a great way to create accountability for yourself, find ways and times when you can create more exercise, and you can see if you’re reaching the goal of 10,000 steps a day.
Note: If your phone has a weak battery, this app may drain it quickly. The GPS and counter run all the time, so be sure to turn off the app when you’re not using it.
Use These Apps to Help You Live a Healthier Life
You’ve got enough to keep track of during the day. Between getting lunches packed, dinner ready, and bills paid, let these healthy living apps take a bit of the workload off you and put it into the digital world of phone apps. With these creative programs, you can record worsening, improving, or unchanged symptoms; listen to yourself sleep talk or find a potential sleep problems; even keep track of your cancer treatments and medicines. Use these apps to make your day healthier and better. Keep yourself and your loved ones healthier in the process, too.
We selected these healthy living apps based on their potential to help you live a healthier, more fulfilled life in a number of ways. Additional factors considered in selecting these apps included: user ratings, affordability, accessibility, format, functionality, and relevance to healthy living and its community's needs. Together, this collection represents the gamut of helpful iPhone and Android apps that are successfully designed to make living a healthy life easier.
Please note: Healthline Networks does not endorse or warrant for fitness of purpose any of these applications. These apps have not been evaluated for medical accuracy by Healthline Networks and unless otherwise indicated, haven’t been approved by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA).