These apps will help you stay on top of your health, giving you peace of mind and much-needed motivation.
Posted in , Aug 11, 2020
Looking for ways to stay active and healthy during the current crisis? Luckily, there are plenty of apps for that.
We've rounded up a handful of apps—for both iOS and Android phones—to make exercising, eating right, and keeping your mind sharp a bit easier. From guided meditations to Covid-19 tracing and programs that promise to improve your sleep, these apps have every aspect of your health covered.
Meditation can be beneficial, but also difficult to master. This app has cracked the code to achieving a mindful state in just a few minutes. There are a handful of free meditation guides offered, including a “Basic” package and even more paid offerings. The best thing about Headspace, besides the easy-to-follow sessions, is the variety of meditation courses.
Apple partnered with the Centers for Disease Control to launch this Covid-19 app, which functions as a sort of hub for all your coronavirus needs, including a list of testing locations near you and a screening tool to input your symptoms if you’re feeling ill. And because both the CDC and FEMA worked with Apple on this, there’s also credible information on the virus, how it spreads and updates on vaccination trials, recovery rates, and other need-to-know news.
Meaning “simply work it,” Sworkit promises an easy, fun sweat session whether you’re just starting your exercise routine or looking for a way to ramp up your training schedule. The draw here is that you can choose how long you want your workouts to be—from one minute to 90 minutes—input your goal, and then the app customizes a routine to fit your needs. There are trainers and professionals available for consultations, but even if your aim isn’t to lose weight or build muscle, this app has a way to help.
One of the best things we can do for our health is stay hydrated, which is made easier with Waterlogged. You can set your goals each day, track how you’re doing and schedule reminders for times when you know you usually forget to drink water. But the most helpful part of this app is that it allows you to take photos of your glasses or bottles and measures the water they hold. That way, if you have a favorite cup you normally drink out of, you can just hit the customized icon and the app will calculate how many of those you need to drink that day.
Stress can make sleep hard to come by and we’re all holding onto a bit more of it these days, which is why a sleep monitoring app like this peer-reviewed program might be worth the download. With the help of scientists and sleep experts, Sleepscore has devised a way to track your sleep patterns—by monitoring but never recording your movement and breathing during the night—to analyze the different stages of your nighttime activities. It can tell you how long you were in REM, how many times your body woke up, how restless you were, etc. It then gives you tips for improving your sleep, including a customized sleep score, a goal sleep score and daily reminders on everything from when to put down the caffeine to the optimal time to wake up according to your sleep pattern.
My Fitness Pal offers plenty of helpful tools (for free) for anyone interested in achieving a healthier lifestyle. That doesn’t necessarily mean losing weight, although the app does help with that. Instead, My Fitness Pal gives you an easy way to keep a food diary, encouraging mindful eating with reminders and tools for calculating the micro and macronutrients you’re getting each day. It even offers healthy recipes and exercise tips should you want them.
Yoga is an ancient practice that’s especially great for those hoping to activate their muscles, improve their balance and focus their mind. There are so many benefits, but they require people perfect the various poses, which is why we love Pocket Yoga. Along with guided sessions, soothing background music and the ability to unlock new environment, this app offers beautifully illustrated examples of over 300 poses, plus a dictionary of what each pose is called and its respective benefits. You’ll be a skilled yogi in no time.
Medisafe is one of the top medication monitoring apps, offering so many extras on top of your normal pill reminder programming. You can input all your medications, plus the time of day you take them and the app will alert you if there are any interactions you should know about. It will also remind you if you miss a dose. You can also send your health information to your doctor so he or she can monitor your drug intakes and add a Medifriend, who will be alerted if you fail to take your medicine. That, along with refill reminders and coupons for drug discounts, make this a must-have medication monitoring app.
We all know how important it is to keep our bodies active, but training your mind is just as vital to a long and healthy life. That’s why we appreciate the science and gameplay behind Lumosity, developed by experts to give your brain the ultimate workout. You can choose the type of play—cognition, language, math, etc.—measure your baseline, and track your scores the more you play, seeing how they stack up against people of the same age and gender as you.
Another terrific workout for seniors, Tai-Chi combines meditation with fluid movements meant to improve your balance and stability. The 7-Minute Chi app aids you in perfecting the breathwork and mindfulness that really elevates this exercise routine, complete with guided sessions that instruct you on breath syncing and customize workouts to your skill level.