Smartphones, tablets can help your health and well-being efforts

If you have a smartphone, it can be a great tool for keeping up with your health history and well-being practices. Not to make any commercial endorsements, we took a look at some generic classifications for apps you can get for your smartphone or tablet, without purchasing a particular brand.

Overall Health

  • You can get tips on what to do in medical emergencies. You can, analyze your sleep patterns or create a stretching routine.
  • There is an app to help you go to sleep, or fall back to sleep if you wake up in the middle of the night.
  • You can select yoga sessions or guided meditation for stress relief.

Diet and Nutrition

  • Many different apps can help you track your food intake, which is one of the best ways to keep on track to your goal, whether you are trying to lose, gain or maintain weight.
  • If you have to restrict certain types of food, you can find choices at many national restaurant chains.
  • If you’re shopping for yourself, there’s an app to help you stick with your diet or your restrictions.
  • If you are traveling abroad, there is an app that can translate your food allergies into the local language so you can eat safely.
  • There are scanners that use your smartphone camera to read the barcodes at the grocery store tell you what the nutritional value is or enter it directly into your food log.

Active Lifestyle

  • You can use the GPS in your smartphone to track the steps you’ve taken, the distance you’ve walked/run/cycled or the stairs you’ve climbed.
  • There are training programs with coaching tips and daily workout plans to help you walk or run any number of different distances. There are some that will tap into your own music to create a soundtrack at just the right beat to keep you moving at the right pace.
  • If you’re out on the road, you can have your phone post your whereabouts for your friends to monitor your safety or cheer your progress.
  • Intervals, circuit training, weight lifting? There are apps for them, too.

Brain Training

  • There may be some benefit from exercising your brain. You can find apps that are designed to give you that exercise.

As with anything, some will work better for you than others. But all may be inexpensive enough that it won’t hurt to try them out. Here is one list compiled by people who have done the testing. We’ll be trying some, too.