In the last issue, I wrote about losing weight with the iPhone by using apps such as Edibles Food Journal and Restaurants (“Lose Weight with the iPhone,” page 64, Vol. 1, No. 2). Losing weight is great, but it’s not the be all and end all—getting healthy should be your real goal. For example, your food decisions shouldn’t all be about calories and carbohydrates; you should be concerned about the quality of the food you eat. Note also that healthy people exercise regularly and tend to have a higher muscle-to-fat ratio. Muscle is heavier than fat, and as you build more of it, you might not lose as much per week. Finally, there are things more detrimental to your health than fatty foods, not the least of which is smoking. You have to go beyond calorie counting and wrap your mind around the idea of living healthier.
Fueling your body
Living healthier not only involves doing more exercise, it means eating better (we’ll call this “fueling your body”). A double cheeseburger might look tempting for lunch, and it may only cost me a dollar, but it consumes 25 percent of my daily allotment of calories, fat, and fiber. In addition, the contents of that burger—the bun, meat patty, tomatoes, cheese, etc.—may have spent days or weeks in a refrigerated truck. The point is that fast food provides me with questionable nutrition—it’s poor quality fuel for my body.
In an attempt to incorporate fresher foods into my diet, I’ve become a “localvore” whenever possible. That means I attempt to eat fresh foods grown in my area when I can find them. How do you find out what’s fresh in your area? If you’re an iPhone user, you can go to the iTunes App Store and search for “What’s Fresh”. This app uses the iPhone’s GPS capabilities to determine your location and lets you know what fruits and vegetables are currently in season in your area.
Each week, before shopping (preferably at a local farmer’s market for locally-grown food), use What’s Fresh to check out what’s available in your area. Then, pull out your cookbooks and find a recipe or two that fit the bill. If your cookbooks are a little behind the times, you may want to download a recipe app from iTunes. One such app is the TinyKitchen Cooking App. It not only allows you to search through 70,000 recipes (from recipesource.com), you can add your own as well. TinyKitchen also lets you select a recipe, specify the number of servings you want, and then display a shopping list of the items you need for it. You can carry this list with you on your iPhone, or e-mail it to yourself before you go shopping and print it out on a piece of paper.
- Mason Bryant
By now, everyone should know that smoking has all sorts of negative effects on your health. However, those who have smoked all their lives often have trouble quitting. I checked out an iPhone app called GottaKickit.
GKi lets you set the number of cigarettes you’re allowing yourself to smoke, and then the app tells you when you can take that smoke break. The interval is gradually increased, and eventually you are on your way to becoming smoke-free. You indicate that you’re having that cigarette by flicking the flame on a virtual lighter, and then the app tells you when your next smoke is due.
I can’t really put this app to the test because I’m a pipe smoker and make one bowl of pipe tobacco last around three days. But I’d like to challenge our readers who smoke to give the free version of this app a try and let us know if it works for you. The enhanced version may be worth it to free yourself from this addiction.
- Free “Lite” version also available
- Chris Zamara and Nick Sullivan