12 Apps for a Healthy Life

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by Larry Barber & Liz Gasper

Have you been looking to add some cool apps to your healthy lifestyle toolbox? The new technology is amazing! If you own an iPad or iPhone, or both, then we don’t have to tell you as a health-conscious techy that the options are endless. There are so many choices, how do you choose? Follow me through the world of apps and I’ll have you healthy app savvy in no time!

Dr Keiner

Healthy living apps will be found in two general categories: Food/Nutrition and Fitness/Workouts. All apps in this review can be found in the Apple Store online. Let’s explore some of the Food and Nutrition apps first.

Food and Nutrition

“The Green Kitchen” is all about healthy vegetarian food.  Recipes include everything from Blueberry Super Smoothies and Rustic Potato Pizza to Chocolate Black Bean Power Cookies. The ratings and reviews are great, and it was just updated on Oct. 26. It is easy to use, the pictures will make you drool, and it’s only $2.99!

Next up is the “Food Diary and Calorie Tracker” by MyNetDiary Inc. The app is one of the priciest at $9.99. The app was previously featured as a, Apple Staff Favorite. There are nearly half a million foods to access. The claim is that it is the easiest to use and most comprehensive, helping people lose weight naturally by eating better and making smarter food choices.

Check out “Eat to Live: The Amazing Nutrient Rich Program for Fast & Sustained Weight Loss” by Vook. It is the revised and abridged video book by Dr. Joel Furman. The reviews are almost five stars with comments from those that claim this app to be life changing. With lots of videos on topics like “Food Addiction” and “Sculpting our Future,” you won’t want to wait to digest this one. The app is perfect for you if you want to learn more about health, wellness, disease, and need the visual “how-to” that will get you there. At $5.99 this one is a must!

“SuperFood HD 1.6” is for people who are looking to improve their current state of health through food knowledge. This app would be like buying a great book on healthy food nutrients. There is the option to upgrade on three different levels with the most expensive being $1.99. This is a great all-around app.

Because of its great popularity, “Weight Watchers Kitchen Companion” by Weight Watchers International is a must-have for those committed to the program. This app is free for the basic version, limiting access. However, signing up for both the online Wight Watchers program and the app, compliment one another. This app is great for the on-the-go Weight Watcher. The Apple Store reviews give it a 4.5 with 527 reviews. There is a mobile version, also free, that had slightly less desired applause.

The sixth app is “Meal Board- Meal and Grocery Planner.” This app combines recipe management, meal planning, and grocery shopping into one single app, while allowing you to manage recipes, ingredients, the store aisles where you shop, as well as inputing your favorite recipes or from top recipe websites. Cool or what? Well almost—the drawback to this app is that the built-in recipes provided are anything but healthy. The only two built-in side dish recipes are Mashed Potatoes from the Food Network and Pasta with Cream Sauce from The Taste of Home. For anyone with a goal to get fit and limited time, you should skip this one. There is too much to do in such little time.

Six Workout /Fitness Apps

“CycleMeter” is fabulous! This app has multiple functions and suits a variety of activities and sports—indoors and out. There are editable running/workout schedules that fit anything from the first-time runners 5K, to a 20 week marathon prep program. Activities include cross country skiing, biking, running, mountain biking, skating, and swimming. Basically, it tracks everything that moves and incudes speed, distance, heart rate-and spits it all out as easy, readable graphs. There is an online store to purchase gear to do the advance stuff, but if you have an iPhone and a pair of running shoes, that is enough.

Who says working out doesn’t pay? GymPact.com is the ingenious effort that rewards us for going to the gym by paying us! Cool right? Not so fast! The premise is that you make a commitment and set goals each week related to fitness. The app is linked to your gym and will check you in each time you go. This racks up points. If you do not go you are penalized and charged. The money is the result of all of the people that do not go. The app requires you to provide your credit card information and link it to a PayPal account that has a minimum of ten dollars in it. There are unfavorable ratings regarding actually getting paid. What’s your experience? We’d love to hear from our readers!

“Lift” is a motivational tool that combines your own personal goals with the help of others who give you props and comments. A prop is a “thumbs up, good for you” when you accomplish one of your goals. Goals can be anything from eating clean to calling mom and dad once a week, or simply to spend 10 minutes outside each day. It is a fun reminder of your important habits, and it feels good when someone gives you a “thumbs up” for doing so.

Jillian Michaels has an easy-to-use, customizable app called, Jillian Michaels Slim-Down Solution.” For only $1.99, she provides you sample plans as well as the option to create your own. Users can enter their diet plans and see the breakdown of protein, carbs and fats. This app is for all fit levels, from the beginner to hard core. The entry level includes more than enough recipes, as well as pictures to accompany the workouts. Once you download the app, you can enter your goal weight, fitness level, and create your daily food logs. Become a part of Jillian’s devotees and get fit while doing it!

“Fitness for iPad” by Arawella Corporation offers some great reviews—from personal trainers no less. At $1.99, this app seems to be a great addition to your arsenal. There are 1,000 video clips and more than 1,000 exercises with video and audio instructions. There is a monthly online magazine, a convenient calorie counter, a body tracker that includes BMI, and the ability to share via Facebook and Twitter. It also offers live support from professional fitness coaches on organizing your routines. We’d love to hear what you think!

“Get in Shape” and “Get in Shape Plus” are also by Arawella Corporation. Similar to “Fitness for iPad,” a premade diet and workout plan, as well as live support are available.  This app seems to be more goal specific, having the option of choosing form eight goals- slimming, weight gain, beach body, cleansing, beauty, and others. The options also include diet time frames from two to 28 days. Activities can be tailored to running or cleaning house.

So there you have it! Twelve of the best-rated apps out there for keeping you on track for a healthy, fit and app-y, life! All apps can be found at the Apple Store.  As always, Aphrodite would love to hear your experiences with the apps listed above. Let us know how they are working for you!