The most innovative health and fitness apps on the App Store

Macworld Staff
15 March, 2018
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App Guide

Fitbit © timo_w2s

Advances in technology have made many aspects of our lives easier to manage, and taking care of our bodies is certainly a part of that. According to Flurry Analytics, the usage of diet and fitness apps has increased by 330 percent in the last three years, and it’s not surprising to discover that all kinds of people – from your granny to your teenage niece – are now monitoring the food they eat and the exercise they do with the help of an app or two.

The survey by Flurry Analytics reveals that 96 percent of people use just one app to monitor all this, and that app loyalty is strong. But where should the uninitiated who are yet to download a fitness or diet app start? You could read some reviews, ask a friend and simply try one out, but we’ve picked out a couple here to get you started.


MyFitnessPal is an app that takes care of the awkward business of calorie counting for you. It tracks your weight and works out a recommended calorie daily intake, and there’s an exercise log and food diary for you to keep notes.

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With more than five million foods in the app’s database, it’s easy to enter what meals you’ve consumed and have that info converted into calorie stats.  The homepage shows the number of calories already consumed that day, how many more you can still have and how many calories have been burned through exercise.

There’s the possibility of syncing the info with a fitness tracker if you use one. There are also chat forums to talk to other users and share diet and fitness tips.  It’s also possible to import any recipes that you find online.

For help in deciding what to add to your supermarket trolley, the app includes a barcode scanner, allowing you to enter the nutritional values of different packaged foods. When you’re following a healthy regimen, you might be steering clear of takeaway as you think of these meals as naughty treats – like pizza and Chinese food.

However, with so many restaurants providing delivery services today, the choice of what you can order is huge. The number of healthy food choices that can be delivered to you at work or at home has increased massively. So if you’re in the mood for a power shake, an elevated healthy chicken soup or a superfood salad at lunch and haven’t prepared ahead, you can just order it instead, although it’s not pizza or kebab. Sometimes part of the reason for ordering in rather than cooking is about the time and effort a particular dish would take you to prepare. Do you have all the ingredients you need, for instance, to prepare a halal Thai green curry, or would it make sense to find a restaurant that can deliver it to you? Freeing up time from the kitchen might give you an extra exercise slot too!


Of course, the choice of apps out there for both fitness and diet tracking is enormous, and you may have to try out a few different ones until you find the one that’s right for you. Many apps  cover both fitness and diet. However, if you want to keep track of your fitness separately, then Fitness Buddy is certainly a good one to start with.

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It’s especially useful if you find exercise boring and feel that you’re stuck in a routine when choosing what exercise to do. The Fitness Buddy app has more than 2400 exercises with around 1000 videos. You can simply follow one of the pre-set workouts or customise your own. If you’re unsure about how to target certain muscles, a handy diagram of the human body allows you to tap on the part you’re interested in and you’ll be directed to the most appropriate exercises.

When you’ve defined the program you want to follow, the app tracks your progress on a calendar view. There’s also the possibility of using the built-in music player to create playlists to fit each workout you do.

Of course, no matter how great the apps that you use to monitor your fitness and diet are, they can only reflect what you actually choose to eat and do as exercise. Don’t expect that an app will bring you the perfect body – it might make things easier to manage, but you’ll still have to do the work!

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  1. Alexander K. says:

    It’s true that there is a huge amount of fitness and nutrition apps available now. Especially for dieting I think they can be extremely useful so when I started my weight loss journey half a year ago I also started looking for one. I have a lot of friends that are also using nutrition apps to lose weight and one of them recommended the app Yazio to me. I downloaded it from the app-store ( and I have to say that the app is totally worth giving it a try. I was surprised by all the features that the app offers besides the food diary. It even includes healthy recipes and meal plans! I can totally recommend it to everyone who’s still looking for the perfect nutrition tracking app!

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