Monday, October 10, 2016

Calling On Health: Top Health Apps

Lets face it, the world today revolves around technology. It is not rare to venture out in public only to find numerous gazes focused on a cell phone, tablet, game console, or television. Chronic illness sufferers are no exception.

"Sick" does not translate well in the real world. Technology is a way to escape the isolation, manage life, and connect with others enduring similar struggles. With that being said, I chose 5 cell phone applications that make life with failing health a little less complicated.

Mango Healthx ]

Mango Health is great value to any chronic illness patient. The sole purpose is to document medications based on type, dosage, specific time to administer, if it was taken at all, etc. There is the option to set an alarm as a reminder to take the medications entered. It provides a way around those days heavily clouded by "brain fog" when medications doses are often skipped or accidentally doubled dosed if the app user cannot recall if it was taken at all that day. It is a miracle in the form of a cell phone application, literally!

Instant Heart Ratex ]

The majority of the time, getting an accurate heart rate reading via a cell phone app is difficult. I was definitely skeptical. However, it has not been incorrect on the occasions I have used it. The readings correlate with my pulse ox and blood pressure cuff. Rarely are they ever more than a couple beats off.

Food Intolerancesx ]

The nutritional information that this has to offer is immensely helpful. It is especially useful for those who suffer from food allergies, food sensitivities, or require a specialty diet limited in histamine and salicylates, like with Mast Cell Disease.

It provides the option to enter in food allergies or sensitivities, as well as the severity of each of them. It gives a list of individual foods rated by the allergy information entered. Below are a couple pictures of the application as an example. (i.e. cucumber is low in histamine, moderate in sals, and free of gluten).

It is a great resource for those just beginning one of the special diets or to research an unfamiliar food choice!

Hear and Now x ]

Unlike the other applications on this list, Hear and Now is a recent download of mine. My oncologist actually recommended Biofeedback apps to try, as my current treatment options are few. Biofeedback is beneficial for calming the nervous system. The app gives directions on breathing styles. It provides a counter and various sounds to go along with it.

This morning I woke up in a Mast Cell Disease reaction. In hopes to lessen the amount of emergency medication doses needed, I used the app to relax and calm my body through the rough patch until the medications began working.

CRON-O-Meterx ] [ x ]

I was introduced to this app shortly after transitioning from TPN and/or tube feeds to a raw vegan diet. It breaks down the food entered by macronutrient, followed by individual proteins, micronutrients, and more. I believe I have discussed this app in the post, Confessions of a Vegan Tubie. The layout of the application has changed since then. The examples below (from early 2015) depict some of the app's function. Cron-o-meter is ideal for those struggling with oral intake, as it reveals specifically what is lacking. They offer a free online version through the first link above. The second link is the iPhone app, but it is not free.

SheReadsTruthx ] [ x ]

Technically this is app number 6 on the list and it is not exactly "health" related. In my opinion. it is beneficial for mental and spiritual health though. Anyways, count it as a bonus! 

I had been searching for a Bible study application for months before coming across SheReadsTruth. They offer a website and an iPhone app. Specific studies through the app do cost, but it features studies that are free too. I have enjoyed the one titled "The Bible in a Year." Each day provides access to certain chapters of the Bible. After 365 days, you will have read the entire Bible. An item on my bucket list to read the Bible to its entirety. This makes it easy to do so! 

I hope that you enjoy these apps as much as I have! What are your favorite health apps?