Apps for Wellness Warriors

in Lifestyle

Who knew? Your smart phone is an amazing tool to help you lead a healthy and wholesome lifestyle. When I’m not using my phone for picture taking and Instagram, (let’s be honest) I’m probably on one of these fantastic apps instead. Having knowledge of health and wellness conveniently delivered from your phone can help you make the right health decisions for you and your family. Download these apps ASAP!

Chemical Cuisine (free) – Have you ever found yourself asking, “what in the world is propyl gallate and why is it in my food?” If the odd names of food ingredients leave you confused, use this app to find out exactly what they are. Created by the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Chemical Cuisine features a huge list of food additives, their descriptions, and a safety warning about consumption. You don’t need wifi to view that app once downloaded, so it can be easily accessed the next time you’re in the grocery market and trying to translate a box of crackers.

Dirty Dozen (free) – Is buying organic really that important? Do you have to buy organic everything? Use this app for those perplexing grocery store questions. Every year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes a list of conventional foods with the least and most pesticide residues, tested from 48 fruits and vegetables. They assemble the “dirty dozen:” the top 12 foods with the highest pesticide residues, and the “clean fifteen:” the 15 with the least amount of pesticides. What’s the big deal with organic over conventional? Pesticides on conventional fruit & veg have been linked to ADHD in kids, cancer, brain and nervous system toxicity, hormone disruption, skin/eye/lung irritation, and a loss of biodiversity, soil fertility, and wildlife. So the next time your scratching your head while staring at organic potatoes in the market, be sure to check this app.

Headspace (take10 program free) – Have you gotten into meditation? I’m sure you’ve heard the amazing health benefits: lower stress, more creativity, reduced anxiety, reduced blood pressure, and even improved cellular health. Yet, are you a bit wary of how to meditate? I had no clue how to sit still for a few moments with my mind, until I found this app. With the free take10 program, Headspace directs you on 10 meditations that are 10 minutes long each. The mediations are guided (with a cute accent), simple, and quite literally teach you how to meditate. Try it out!

Farmstand (free) – I love my farmer’s markets, and with Farmstand I can find one close by, no matter where I am. Find local food from over 8,700 farmer’s markets all over the world, access directions to markets, opening times, and post & share photos of your delicious haul. Go on and be a localvore!

Fitbit (free app, Flex band $99) – Prolonged periods of inactivity, like sitting at a desk for eight hours a day, wrecks havoc on our health. A great way to get up and get moving is by challenging yourself with a fitness tracker. Fitbit’s daily goal is 10,000 steps, which is around 5 miles, and the standard guideline from the American Heart Association. My Fitbit tracks my steps, miles, calories burned, active minutes, and duration of sleep everyday. With the app I can even log exercise, ounces of water consumed, calories, weight, and create a food plan. It’s a great way to become conscious of your daily movement and get you up off your booty!

Food Tripping (free) – Road trips are awesome… until you get hungry and realize you forgot to pack snacks. Every exit is lined with the same old fast food restaurants and zero nutritious options in sight. Download Food Tripping before pulling into the golden arches to find awesome eateries, healthy food markets, juice bars, microbreweries, organic coffee, and health food stores based on GPS location. With this app you can search by location, name, and popularity, view contact details for each place, save your favorites, and discover a ton of healthy and sustainable food options wherever you go. Nutritious travel on the road is possible, hallelujah!

Non-GMO Project (free) – GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) are plants or animals that have been genetically engineered with DNA from bacteria, viruses, or other plants and animals. They have become an incredibly hot topic as consumers try to assess their safety in food. A growing body of evidence has linked GMOs to health problems, environmental damage, soil depletion, and the violation of farmer’s rights. More than 60 countries around the world have banned or placed significant restrictions on GMOs in their food supply, while the United States still plows full speed ahead. If you prefer not to partake in the science experiment, make sure to download this app before your next trip to the store. With the app, you can search through a huge database of brands and products that are enrolled in the Non-GMO Project, and find supporting retailers in your area who can help with non-GMO shopping.

Seafood Watch (free) – Overfishing and ocean depletion are becoming huge global issues. Still love sushi? Me too. This app helps to recommend ocean-safe seafood at your local restaurants and stores, seafood and sushi recommendations, and information about how each fish should be sustainably fished or farmed. Next time your craving something fishy, access this list to be a sustainable consumer.

Whole Foods Market Recipes (free) – when I’m absolutely indecisive about what to cook, this app always gives me a fresh idea or a great recipe. The app features over 3000 recipes created by Whole Foods Market and a database searchable by course, cuisines, special diet, and on-hand ingredients. Create shopping lists, find a local store, and rate and read reviews of recipes. It’s a great kitchen tool.

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