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3 Health Apps that Help Me | Mary Biever | One Writing Mother

3 Health Apps that Help Me

In the five weeks since my heart attack, I’ve learned a lot and changed many habits. Lowering my caffeine from half a pot of coffee per day, changing from drinking southern-style iced tea to water, and severely limiting my diet’s sodium and fat levels are still a work in process.

Today is a mini milestone. Following doctor’s orders, after my release from the hospital, I walked 2 minutes one day and started adding a minute per day to that. Today, I’ll hit the 30 minute mark, where I need to stay for the time being. To celebrate, I’m sharing 3 free apps that have helped me in the last month.:

GoodRX: If you input a prescription drug into this app, it checks your location and lists the medication’s price at pharmacies in your area. This is a good first step in determining where to fill your prescriptions.

BP Watch: When I take my blood pressure, I can input it here and keep a running history of it which can then be  emailed and exported.

My Fitness PalThis free calorie counter, diet and exercise journal is my new best friend. With it, I can log what I eat, the water I drink, and my exercise to make sure I stay on goal. Listed below are my favorite features:

  • Food nutrition info: If I log a name brand food product or basic real food item, it often already has the nutrition information listed. So I don’t have to enter it.
  • Easy food additions: If my food item is not listed, I can easily add it to use later.
  • Recipe nutrition analysis: I can input the ingredients in a recipe into it, and it will calculate the nutrition information into it.
  • Daily and weekly statistics: With the touch of a button, I can see the nutritional value of what I have eaten that day. This helps me easily monitor my calories, sodium, and fats so I can make appropriate food choices the rest of the day. I’ve learned some things from these statistics. First, it’s much easier for me to get my minimum daily protein than I realized; that makes it easier to me to stay in the 6 oz. protein limit per day for my cardio diet. Second, even eating a diet with more fruits and vegetables, I need to work harder to get my needed calcium and potassium each day. Third, if I eat a fat free processed food, it will often have high sodium. So I need to minimize those choices or adjust the rest of my daily diet if I use them. Fourth, I had one day where I ate out, and those food totals totally blew my sodium and calorie totals for the day. However, with the weekly option, I was able to make better choices the following days to stay on task.
  • Water log: I can log each glass of water each day and make sure I’m drinking enough water. Once I saw this, I started drinking a pint of water each morning first thing – before anything else. I’m amazed at how much better that has improved my outlook each morning.
  • Exercise log: Even with my simple walking on a flat surface with no resistance, I can see the calories burned and see how that impacts what I’ve eaten that day.
  • Weight loss predictor: At the end of each day, when I complete my log, I can see an estimate of how much weight I will lose in 5 weeks if I consume that many calories each of the following days. It may not be 100% accurate. However, it hammers home a daily tie in that my food choices today will impact my health long term.
  • Online access: I can access the app online via my laptop as well as on portable devices. And they sync.

When I think of getting fit, I’m old enough that my first thought is not “There’s an app for that.” However, these apps have saved me time and increased the likelihood I will continue to follow doctor’s orders to live a healthier lifestyle.

One Response to “3 Health Apps that Help Me”

  1. Bertha March 9, 2017 at 2:13 am #

    Times are chnignag for the better if I can get this online!

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