One of the most interesting parts of the iPhone 6 experience is the Health app, and the Healthkit tool (which allows health apps to share and collate data) that comes along with it. Join us as we take a look at the best health apps on iOS, all of which can integrate themselves into Apple’s Health app.
One of the most intriguing features of the iPhone 6 (and the iPhone 6 Plus, come to that), is the Health app. You know the drill, it’s a health and fitness app, designed to help you get yourself, and hopefully remain, healthy.
There’s a bit more to it than that, admittedly, because underpinning the Health app itself is a little tool called Healthkit. There was a bit of confusion in the early days after the new iPhone launched, as to what Healthkit actually does, but the simplest way to describe it is as a tool for developers of other apps to integrate their own services into the Health app by, in the simplest terms, sharing health data.
And thus, the coolest point about the Health app is that it can collate data from other health and fitness apps, giving you one central location to monitor your health.
But which are the best apps that integrate with Apple’s Health app? Let’s take a look at the Top 5 Health and Fitness apps…
1) Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFitnessPal
If you’re trying to lose weight (whether for general well-being, or if you have a specific reason to lose weight, as this author does), MyFitnessPal’s Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker app is a little bit of a godsend. It has the largest database of any iOS calorie counter (over 4 million foods, according to the blurb), and it allows you to enter data for both food intake and exercise, to work out an optimal calorie load for you.
And of course, with Healthkit integration, you can do all of that directly through the centralised Health app!
2) Run with MapMyRun
While we’re on the subject of exercise, let’s have a look at an app designed to help joggers, runners and cyclists to get the most from their exercise regimen. You can track and log your route through GPS, see how well your run meets your target goals (running a certain distance in a certain time, for instance), and thanks to Healthkit integration, you never need to leave the Health app to do it!
3) CARROT Fit – 7 Minute Workout, Step Counter & Weight Tracker
Time to change gears, now; most of the apps on this list will use positive encouragement to help you achieve your goals, but CARROT Fit takes a different approach. Specifically, it aims to guilt trip you into getting in shape, and the developer’s own blurb has this to say: “Make getting in shape suck so much less with CARROT’s hilarious fitness app.”
That’s a novel approach, certainly, but the reviews on iTunes seem to suggest that it really does work! Plus, of course, you can now get your daily chewing out from CARROT the Fitness Overlord without having switch from the Health app…
4) WebMD – Trusted Health and Wellness Information
If we’re talking online health resources, then there’s simply no name more well-known than WebMD, and naturally, WebMD’s iOS app now includes Healthkit integration. In this case, that integration comes in the form of WebMD’s Healthy Target program. What that does is offer context and insights to all the data collected by your other health and fitness apps, allowing you to set goals and targets based on any actual conditions you have (such as collecting blood sugar levels if you suffer from diabetes).
While this service is still very new, and thus people are still finding out how it works in practice, this could end up being the most important app on this list!
5) MotionX 24/7 Sleeptracker
There’s one area we haven’t talked about, as yet. We’ve talked about fitness, healthy eating and so on, but we haven’t discussed the issue of sleep. Put simply, as well as staying fit and eating well, you also need a good night’s kip!
That’s where the MotionX 24/7 Sleeptracker comes in, allowing you to monitor your sleep patterns (including snoring and heart rate), to make sure that you’re getting enough rest.
And so, you can see why Apple’s new Healthkit service is so important; it allows you to have a kind of one-stop shop for all your health monitoring needs, and with all these apps integrating into the central service, you don’t have to eat your phone’s battery by having tons of apps open at once (also, with everything in one place, you don’t forget to do important steps, like getting your daily exercise).
People have said this may well represent the future of mobile health services, and based on how well Healthkit has brought everything together, we can’t really argue!