This is a guest post by Matthew Denos.
Need to drop some pounds? Have an iPhone? If so, you have an entire weight loss
program at your fingertips !
There are 500—and counting—weight loss applications available for download, many of which are free. There are apps that will help you determine how much you need to lose, how many calories you should be consuming, how many calories are in different foods, or how many calories are burned with various activities, and apps to help you track it all. No, this doesn’t mean you should skip your workout today—and maybe even for the rest of the week—in order to browse through them. Instead, you can start with the list provided here, which will get you started towards your goal.
1. BMI Calculator
The first app you might want to use is one that offers a Body Mass Index (BMI) calculator. Your BMI provides a rough approximation of the percentage of body fat you are carrying around, based on your weight relative to your height. BMI Calculator is a free app for the iPhone that will estimate your BMI for you and determine whether you are underweight, normal, overweight, or obese. It is a very basic application wherein you enter your height and weight, and your BMI is calculated. This is a little piece of information, yet very valuable when starting a weight loss progam. It shows you how far away you are from your ideal weight. You also have the option of entering your age and your gender. The newest version of BMI Calculator allows you to save each of your BMI measures and provides a graphic display of the trend; Apple/iTunes.
Another, similar application, is 2Fat. In addition to providing you with an estimate of your BMI, this app translates this number into a percentage of body fat. Instead of having to type in your height and weight, you use scroll wheels to enter the data. 2Fat is a free app, but the developer of the app—two Enterprises—offers an upgraded version, 2Fat +, which costs $0.99 to download. The upgraded version allows the user to enter the data in metric units (a feature that is not available on the free version) and automatically stores the user data when you exit the app; Apple/iTunes.
3. Calorie Counter
Calorie Counter is another great free weight loss application. This application is an extension of the online diet website, CalorieCount.com. It not only provides nutritional data for more than 100,000 foods, but also offers a library of over 150 low-calorie recipes. Users can browse through the recipe file by course, food group, and/or dietary elements. They can access information for some of their favorite exercises as well and record both their daily caloric intake and expenditure. Both U.S. and metric units are supported by this app, and you can enter your weight and view recent logs even when no Internet connection is available; Apple/iTunes.
4. Lose It!
Lose It! is a free app that has received national acclaim in the U.S. It enables you to record your daily food intake and exercise to help you in your weight loss efforts. The application provides an extensive database of food—including restaurant items– and activities and allows you to add additional foods and activities with ease. You are also able to track nutritional information, such as fat grams, carbohydrates, cholesterol, and fiber. The “log” screen displays calories consumed and calories expended for the day, along with your daily caloric budget, and calculates how much over or under budget you are. No internet connection is needed, and there are no annoying advertisements, either; Apple/iTunes.
5. Absolute Fitness
The Absolute Fitness app has an extensive exercise database, in addition to a comprehensive nutritional database. It provides information on calories expended for more than 180 different physical activities and calories, fat grams and other nutritional information—including vitamin content—for over 10,000 foods. It also gives users the ability to create “custom” foods (meals) that consist of more than one food item. This application automatically calculates daily nutrient intake limits and sets a goal for you, based on the information you entered into your profile. You can elect to customize these figures, however. A daily snapshot allows you to see how much you have already consumed and how much you can still consume of a specific nutrient. Absolute Fitness also has a feature that allows you to track your body fat percentage, blood pressure, hours of sleep, and amount of water consumption. All this can be had for a $4.99 download fee; Apple/iTunes.
About the Author:
As a medical scientist with a specific interest in obesity treatement, Matthew loves anything mobile that can get people on the road to improved health and well-being. He writes for a number of different tech and health sites and offers coupons for the Medifast meal replacement diet plan.