3/11/2014 10:46:00 AM Guest column: There's an app for that
Many of us now have phones we use for more than just calling someone. With the dawn of smartphones comes a plethora of phone applications or apps to help us eat right and stay healthy.
Currently, the iPhone has more than 800,000 apps available for download; there are more than 700,000 apps for the Android system. Having this many apps available can make it challenging to select those that are reliable and fact-based.
Dietitians from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics have reviewed the top-rated free iPhone and Android apps for people needing help to manage their diabetes, eat gluten free or lose weight. Here are a select few that were rated at least four out of five stars.
Blood Sugar Tracker - Easily log blood sugar levels, set target blood glucose ranges, and view history and simple graphs to quickly identify out-of-range numbers.
Diabetes Companion - Complete nutrition facts for common foods, recipes, informative videos, Q & A for common diabetes-related issues and blood glucose tracking tools.
GluCoMo - Track blood sugar levels, insulin intake and other health components like blood pressure, weight, activity and pulse.
WaveSense Diabetes Manager - Track blood glucose results, carbohydrate intake and insulin doses. Other features include a logbook, trend chart, email reports, color-coded results, video content and customizable target ranges for hypo/hyperglycemia limits and mealtime schedules.
Eating Out G-Free - Tips on how to find a gluten-free menu and create a gluten-free shopping list, lists of foods to avoid and how to stay gluten-free while dining away from home.
Gluten Free Daily - An online guide built to provide education and resources about following a gluten-free diet.
Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFitness Pal - Tracks a combination of fitness goals and nutrition features to promote weight loss.
Calorie Tracker by Livestrong.com - Includes a food and fitness diary designed to help achieve diet and nutrition goals for weight loss, gain or maintenance.
eaTipster - Delivers daily healthy eating tips and addresses common food and nutrition questions and concerns.
Sparkpeople Food and Fitness Tracker - Tracks daily consumption of calories, carbohydrates, fat and protein. Also includes customizable meal plans and a weigh-in page that graphs weight and progress over time.
Having these free and easy-to-use tools at your fingertips may be just what is needed to help reach health and fitness goals.
Sarah Klein-Mark, R.D., is a registered dietitian at Flagstaff Medical Center.