We have more abundance and opportunity available to us now than in any other time period with the knowledge from thousands of years of the written word. Despite living in the greatest prosperity of all times, we are not gaining in health or quality of life. Most people suffer from some type of health issue, the most common of which are heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol or blood pressure, and overweight or obesity. That last one, obesity, affects 2 out of every 3 Americans!
Is Tech the Problem or the Answer?
People often blame existing health issues on busyness, convenience food, lack of motivation, and/or lack of accurate information about what will make them healthy.
Modern life has in fact taken us away from nature, where we were inherently active and inherently understood food from working on a farm. Sure, technology can, in part, be to blame for our less active lifestyle, but this same technology just might be the answer to our current health crisis. New technological advances are now on the market to make health a part of our daily routine. While some of it may appear cumbersome and inefficient at first glance, the learning curve is fast and before you know it you have at your disposal an easy, quick solution to your health woes.
Can recent technological advancements really improve your health? The answer is a resounding “yes.” Below we explore just how it is possible.
Here are the ways that technology can help you to get healthier:
- It can track your lifestyle habits easily so you can monitor your activities and progress. Fitbit tracks the distance you travel, the calories you burn and your heart rate throughout your activity. MyFitnessPal is one of many calorie-counting apps that help you track your intake for easier weight loss. As you monitor your activity, you may feel motivated to improve your numbers over time.
- It can motivate you. See How You Eat is a new app that keeps a photographic record of your meals. Just the act of photographing your food can encourage you to make smarter choices. Then you can review your meals in an easy photo diary. The app also reminds you about meal time and has other features to encourage good habits. ShopWell is another great app for motivation – it allows you to scan the items you buy in the grocery store and suggests healthy alternatives.
- It can order your groceries or find a recipe for you in a snap. Instacart is an app that allows you to order your groceries from your phone and have them delivered to your door in one hour with a minimal delivery fee in many major cities. Sidechef provides recipes, videos, photos and voice instructions to teach you how to cook new recipes. With the help of technology, feeding ourselves is getting easier and more convenient.
- It can tell you the diet that is best for your body and develop a health plan personalized to you. Personalized health apps contain a vast base of knowledge, allowing them to know all about your body type, digestion, health issues and level of fitness, and to customize a diet and health regime specific to you. ph360 is a sophisticated health app that is able to do more than your average diet program. After you complete a short evaluation of your measurements and health history, it runs algorithms based on 15 known health sciences to tell you everything from the best diet to the ideal fitness regime and best place for you to live to maximize your health. ShaeTM is a mobile app that will use these personalized health insights to tell you, in real time, what and when it’s best for you to eat, when to drink more water, when and how to move, or when to go to sleep so you can be at your healthiest. It will even ask you if you want to have the ideal dinner meal for you – both in terms of health properties and taste – delivered to your door.
The options of technologies that exist to help us be our healthiest range from simple to complex, and without a doubt they are influencing how we think about and manage our lifestyle. Technology is here to stay and we can embrace the tools available to make life easier, such as those that tell us what is best for us to eat, give suggestions for how to reduce stress, or let us know the ideal external environment for us. With the growing understanding of how lifestyle choices impact how well we feel, more people want to make good choices and find practical ways to fit wellness habits into their busy lives. Health apps and devices are here to assist us with this challenge and to provide answers to the many questions we have about how to feel our best. Give them a try.