HealthWatch 360 app review

HealthWatch360GB HealthWatch created the HealthWatch 360 app. GB HealthWatch states:

“Our mission is to help prevent common chronic diseases through targeted, gene-based nutritional and dietary intervention. We aim to inform people about the scientific basis of chronic diseases, support them with nutrition management products and services and empower them to take control and live better lives.”

Similar to many food and fitness tracking apps, you start by entering in more about you and your health goals, including gender, height, weight, and weight goal. HealthWatch 360 then automatically generates your BMI as well as your calorie goal to coincide with your weight goal.

After your profile is set up, you are ready to start tracking! The app can take you through a tutorial showing how to enter foods, exercise, and trends. If you are stubborn like me, you skip this sort of thing and try to figure it out yourself. It is relatively simple. Type in any food, and the app will most likely find it through the 300,000 brand name and generic items. There is also a time- saving bar code scanner (which I would have found much sooner if I went through the tutorial) that allows you to scan the food product instead of typing it in. I find the bar code scanner to be mostly accurate, and it recognizes about 90% of products I have scanned. You can also copy certain meals from previous days or make certain foods “favorites” for easier logging.

bar code scanner in action

bar code scanner in action

You can also enter and track physical activity and the app will add back the calories exerted to your calorie goal. The more you move, the more you can eat!

HealthWatchscore

HealthWatch 360 gives a nutrition score

Two of the unique features HealthWatch 360 includes are “trackers” and “trends.” Everyday, you can track and record a number of different conditions including but not limited to weight, blood pressure, blood glucose, cholesterol, mood, energy level, sleep, stress, anxiety, acne, etc. If the app does not have something you want to watch, you can create your own tracker. Then, view trends for any of your trackers in a 7 or 30 day time period. This allows you to correlate your trends with your nutrient intake. Is your blood glucose high on days your carbohydrate intake is higher? Do you feel more energized when you take a multivitamin?

The part that makes the app slightly addictive is the “Nutrition Score.” The app grades your nutrition for the day out of 100 based on the USDA recommendations. This turns into a healthy competition- pun intended. I find myself thinking, “Okay, I am low in vitamin D, so if I have salmon instead of chicken, I can get a higher score.”

Two nutrients the general public is shown to not get enough in the diet (and also the two I noticed I usually fall short) are vitamin D and potassium. The app allows you to click on the nutrients you are low in and shows you which foods have higher amounts of that nutrient.

Foods High in Potassium

  • Squash
  • Potato with skin
  • Spinach
  • Lentils
  • Most types of beans
  • Watermelon
  • Raisins
  • Brussel sprouts

Foods High in Vitamin D

  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • Orange juice and milk that are fortified with vitamin D
  • Eggs
  • Liver (Yummy, I know)
  • Cheese

Overall, I find this app very helpful and even fun to use. However, as with every food tracker app, some calorie and nutrient discrepancies are expected. It is impossible to achieve complete accuracy when it comes to tracking food intake. Also, entering each food item specifically for the most accurate information can be time consuming. It is important to understand that food nourishes us and is more than just fat and calories, which I think HealthWatch 360 emphasizes by including vitamins, minerals, and macronutrients. The HealthWatch360 app is free and available for any iPhone.

Copyright: All content © 2010-2018 Nutrition Strategy Advisors LLC. Photographs © Donna P Feldman, unless otherwise attributed. Reproduction or use without permission is prohibited.