By Shelby Keys
Ever wonder how you can easily browse recipes, track food, activity, and calories, and access key nutrition information and trends – even while you’re on the go? With today’s technology, it’s easier than ever before. Look no further for a collection of websites and apps that will leave you with health information at your fingertips.
Research shows that individuals are more likely to be successful if they track their health and fitness progress. These apps and websites are just a few of the helpful resources out there that individuals can use to access and utilize health information and tips. Participants in any nutrition and exercises program can also turn to these cool tools to track weight and calories consumed, plan meals, and measure blood pressure to name a few. They are relatively simple to use and may just help you reach your health goals!
Instead of trying to decode nutrition labels while becoming overwhelmed with various health claims, tap into these apps for your smart phone that can actually help you. An estimated 150,000 mobile health apps exists for consumers and healthcare professionals, and that doesn’t even count all the websites! So when it comes to building your healthy lifestyle toolbox, check out a few of the ones listed below to stay current, connected, and on track.
BostonMovesForHealth.org and Lose It!- Mayor Menino’s Boston Moves for Health initiative has teamed up with weightloss app Lose It! to help residents keep track of their progress. It’s free to sign up, and you can contribute to the city’s overall goal of losing one million pounds! Finds lots of free and low-cost resources in your neighborhood, as well.
Sharecare.com- An interactive, social question and answer platform, for consumers to post questions and receive answers from food and nutrition experts. In addition to being able to post questions (such as, can I eat sugar if I have Diabetes?), you will receive reliable health information from health professionals.
SparkRecipes (app)- Healthy Recipes application that lets you browse and search for recipes by course, ethnicity, key ingredients, and prep time. This app provides not only key nutrient information but also calories and carbohydrates! In addition to finding healthy recipes, you can also view cooking technique videos. Now that’s an app to get excited about!
SparkPeople.com- An app and a website! One of the most well-known diet and fitness sites, sparkpeople offers a food and calorie tracker for over 2 million foods! The application offers a barcode scanner for fast food entry, a fitness tracker to track workouts and calories burned, and animated exercise demonstrations. Sparkpeople.com additionally offers healthy-living articles, fitness videos, recipes, plus detailed weight and calorie reports.
Figwee Portion Explorer- A visual app, utilizing over 28,000 photos of weighed portions of food. Simply select your food and then use the slider to adjust how much food is on the plate to accurately display the portion of the food you ate. The calories accompanied with that portion will then be displayed. What a great way to no longer guess calories consumed!
Super Healthy Kids- A blog geared towards kids’ cuisine. Healthy eating is made easy with creative recipes, including breakfast pizza pancakes – yum! Nutrition news is also included, as well as practical tips for using ingredients.
Greatist- A website offering the most approachable, digestible, fun, and easy advice for staying fit, cooking healthy, and being happy.
CalorieLab- Nutritional and food databse that cover health news and fitness information. You can access 70,000 foods and 500 restaurant menus.
NutritionUnplugged.com- Food and nutrition blog, written by a Dietitian, focusing on thoughts, discussions, and facts about nutrition, food trends, diet myths, and overall healthy eating.
Nutrition.gov- Government information on food and human nutrition. Covers topics such as weight management, life stages, shopping, cooking, and meal planning.
Diabetes.org- The place to start when you are first diagnosed or have prediabetes. The American Diabetes Association site covers how to track your blood sugar, and has a bunch of recipes.
Digfit- Tracks heart rate, distance, pace and calories burned during exercise.
NIMH.nih.gov- National Institute of Mental Health provides the latest findings on stress, antidepressants, and more! The NIMH is dedicated to providing you with research focused on the understanding and treatment of depression.
Cdc.gov/physicalactvity– Every bit counts! Check out this cool site for fitness tips and sample workout plans.
Acefitness.org- Provides over 200 workouts. Say goodbye to the gym and hello to “gymless” health anywhere! Easy access to exercise information, healthy recipes, and more. Using their exercise library, you can look up almost any and every exercise with step by step instructions to completing to proper movement.
Shelby is a dietetic intern at BPHC. Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyBoston for more healthy eating tips from Shelby throughout March, a.k.a. #NutritionMonth. She also wrote about healthy eating at work earlier this month.