June 26, 2015 Healthy Living

Mobile Apps that are Good for Your Health

Technology today affords us many conveniences and luxuries that we didn’t have before – and that technology can be good for your health. We’ve rounded up some of the mobile apps out there that aim to address your most common health concerns – from fitness apps to allergen detectors, there’s something for everyone.

Fitness apps

We previously discussed some of our favorite fitness apps (like the free and ad-free CDPHP® InMotionSM!), but there are a few more to add to the mix.

Zombies, Run! 3: Zombies, Run! 2 made our last list of fitness apps, and now the third version is here! If you need a little extra motivation, this is a wildly popular app that at $3.99, won’t break the bank. Users earn tools to save the human race from the impending zombie attack for every step they run or walk.

FitStart Personal Trainer: This free app assesses your needs and fitness level by asking you a set of questions after every workout, then customizing your next workout based on your responses. The goal: workouts that push your limits without pushing too far.

Fitnet: Follow along with a workout video, and this free app will use the camera on your smartphone or tablet to measure how well you’re keeping up, providing real-time feedback on your performance.

MINDBODY Connect: Find fitness classes going on nearby, then book and pay for them through the app – signing up for an exercise class has never been easier. (Looking for free wellness classes? CDPHP members have access to a variety of free classes in the community.)

Apps to help you quit smoking

Whether you’re thinking about quitting smoking, have recently made the change, or are just looking for some motivation to stay smoke-free, there’s an app for you.

QuitGuide app: Ideal when you’re thinking about quitting smoking, this free app prepares you for what to expect in your first few weeks.

Quit for Life app: A free app that will send you notifications, tips, and motivation for quitting smoking.

NCI Quit Pal app: This free app (for iPhones only) allows you to track cigarettes, upload supportive videos, connect with online chats, and get tips and motivation.

QuitSTART app: This is another free app, which was designed to help teenage smokers quit. Track moods and cravings, and get tips and encouragement for quitting.

There are also text messaging programs like Smokefree TXT and QuitBuddy, which text you with tips and messages to help you on your smoke-free journey.

Healthy eating apps

Although some fitness apps include a nutrition component, like CDPHP InMotion, there are a number of other apps that are devoted exclusively to nutrition.

Noom Coach: This app (its basic version is free) takes the work out of creating a food diary, with an extensive food database. Use it to track your food intake and get suggestions for simple changes that can help you eat healthier.

HealthyOut: Like its name implies, this app can help you make healthy choices when eating out. The app can highlight the healthiest restaurants based on a given location, and can even note the healthiest food on the menu.

ShopWell: Scan bar codes at the grocery store and this free app will give each item a score, based on a profile you set up detailing your health goals, dietary restrictions, etc.

Ingredient1: Give this free app for iPhones some information about your food habits: what you like/dislike, allergies, etc. In return, you’ll get a list of recommended foods to try and a grocery list that tells you where you can find what you need.

Apps for sleeping better

Sleep Bug: Designed to help you achieve a faster, more relaxed sleep, this free app has a library of soothing sounds, like beach, fire, and Zen garden.

Twilight: This is a free Android app that slowly removes the blue light (known to throw off our sleep cycles) from your phone as the sun begins to set outside.

Sleep Cycle: Though it’s not free (there is a nominal $0.99 charge for this app), this app is worth considering. It uses your phone’s accelerometer to measure your movement in bed and pinpoint REM cycles. Then, you tell it when you need to wake up, and it will awaken you when you’re in your lightest sleep.

Stress / meditation / yoga

Simply Being: Available for iPhone and Android, this meditation app allows you to pick a meditation session length, choose to have a guide or not, and even add soothing sounds.

Daily Yoga: More than 50 yoga classes and 400+ workout poses are in the palm of your hand with this app. The basic version is free, and for more advanced modules and poses, you can subscribe to the app.

Yoga Studio: For $3.99, this iPhone app gives you HD videos with ready-made yoga and meditation classes ranging from 10 to 60 minutes, with varying levels of difficulty and areas of focus. Or, customize your own class with the app’s library of yoga poses and music.

Apps to Keep Your Health Organized

Dosecast: With both a free version and a pro, paid version, this app is a medication management app that aims to help you remember to take the right medication, the right way, at the right time. It also tracks remaining quantities, sends refill reminders, and logs medication adherence.

My CDPHP Mobile: CDPHP members can use this free app to gain secure access to benefit information, to view, email, or fax their member ID cards, and to locate the nearest doctor, hospital, or health care facility.

Allergy apps

WebMD Allergy: Tell this free app the allergies you have, and it will help you prepare for each day with a personalized allergy and weather forecast.

Pollen.com’s Allergy Alert: In addition to allergy forecasts, this free iPhone app also offers in-depth information about top allergens, has a dynamic screen background that changes depending on allergy season (tree, grass, or ragweed), and includes an allergy diary functionality to keep track of your symptoms.

These apps are just the beginning. There are so many free and paid apps in these categories, and of course, there are much more specific health apps, as well – to monitor conditions like diabetes, asthma, high blood pressure, and more. With so many health-related apps available, you’re certain to find the one that best meets your unique health needs.


Photo by Health Gauge / CC BY

Stacey Cheney
About the Author

Before relocating to Georgia with her family, Stacey was a communications & advertising specialist in the CDPHP corporate communications department. In this role, she focused on developing marketing communications for brokers and employer groups. She has also been a freelance copywriter for nearly 10 years. Prior to her tenure at CDPHP, Stacey was a senior eMarketing advisor for Informz and held marketing positions for publishing, manufacturing, and technology-based companies. She earned a bachelor’s degree from SUNY Geneseo and completed graduate work at the University of Denver Publishing Institute.

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