Fitness is becoming an increasingly big part of the modern world. The initial rise of convenience foods and desk jobs has led to a need for a convenient way to deal with excess calories. A huge amount of people are waiting for a solution that actually exists right now in their pockets and purses. Smartphones are one of the best ways to track caloric intake and expenditures.
One of the reasons why it’s not so well known is that the setup can be a bit less than user friendly at first. For example, most phones can function as a pedometer. But a large number of them first require the user to install an app. It’s often an app right from the manufacturer or an affiliated company. But it’s still an added step which can only be acted on when people are in the know. Additionally, this component based system will often give an impression of functionality being missing from phones. Many fitness apps act more like a collection center for data. They’ll list something like hours of sleep as a blank space if there’s no data coming in. That data might simply require installing an app and answering yes when it asks to connect as a supported source of data. It can usually be taken as a general rule that most modern smartphones can track quite a bit of health related data all on their own. From showing which jogging paths are burning extra calories by going uphill, to helping remind people to get some more sleep.
However, the biggest health benefit from smartphones has to do with not needing to burn off extra calories in the first place. Even very old smartphones can link into a variety of different nutrition based services. Some of these do have paid access that will grand more features. But by default, there’s still some great options out there which are totally free. They also come with a variety of different strengths and weaknesses. People will need to look around a bit to find the best match for their needs. In general though all of the free services will cover the basics. And these are also the things that are the best match for smartphones.
These calorie tracking apps are far from a one to one match for looking up calories within lists or books. The biggest advantage is that the nutritional lists tend to be community maintained to at least some extent. If even a minor chain restaurant puts in a new item then it’s a given that nutritional counts will appear in most of the major calorie tracking apps. It might not seem like a huge feature at first. However, estimates are one of the single biggest points of failure with healthy diets. There’s often a huge amount of variation between two different recipes. One can consider the fact that even a tablespoon of oil will have around one hundred calories. And the typical recipe will often vary, plus or minus, by at least half of that. Often times there might be hundreds of calories difference between the same item made in two different places.
The community aspect also means that people can submit recipes of their own. This is great for personal record keeping. It’s easy to forget a recipe that one hasn’t made in a while. It’s also a fantastic tool for finding out about new healthy recipes. Plus, people who are going on a diet will find that community support from people going through the same journey will be a huge help.
The fact that phones are always on hand to enter that data into is part of why they’re such a fantastic tool for healthy lifestyles. People tend to assume that diets fail due to a lack of willpower. But it’s more accurate to say that it’s a lack of willingness to go to extreme lengths to eat healthier. Not many people want to take notes during during lunch so that they can later look everything up in a reference book. Totaling it all up in a leger at the end of the day has the same appeal as doing taxes. Being able to enter all of that data right as it happens is another thing entirely. It typically just takes a minute or less to enter a meal or workout into a tracker app.
On top of everything else there’s the added convenience of community support and automated functionality. Between the two it’s like having a personal trainer watching out for one’s health, 24 hours a day. The more one looks into the subject the more potential becomes apparent. There’s very few health related subjects that a smartphone can’t make easier.