23 April 2018

5 Best Ways to Monitor Your Health at Home

People have never been more aware of their personal health and fitness. With the leaps and bounds made in science and medicine in the last decade, we understand more than ever what is good and bad for us. Alongside better knowledge, wearable tech has made it easy for us to track our heart rate, fitness levels and sport progression. 

If you’re interested in keeping a keener eye on your health, there are now plenty of ways you can monitor various aspects of your body and fitness at home. Here’s our top tips for monitoring your health whenever you please.

#1 - Blood Pressure Wrist Cuff 

Did your recent physical at the doctor’s show you have high blood pressure? This is a common problem that can be solved with dietary changes and regular exercise. You might find it useful to have your own blood pressure monitor at home to keep a check on the problem. These can be picked up cheaply from Amazon and health stores, so you can monitor your health problems and adjust your lifestyle accordingly. 

#2 - Fitness Tracker 

Fitness trackers most often come in the form of smart watches. From the humble beginnings of the old-fashioned pedometers we all used ten years ago to record our daily steps, fitness trackers have become the one-stop-shop for health monitoring.

Fitbit, Garmin, and the Apple Watch are among the most popular fitness tracker brands, which easily connect to the internet and sync your fitness data. Runners and athletes wear these to evaluate their exercise intensity, the distance they travel, the calories they burn, their pulse rate, their temperature, and even sleeping patterns. Other functions include setting goals and recording personal bests. 

They have a huge array of uses and are highly recommended to anyone who likes to see hard evidence of their progress to spur them on. 

#3 - Menstrual Cycle & Fertility Tracker 

This one’s for the ladies. If you glance at a woman’s iPhone screen, you might just see a period, ovulation or fertility tracking app. Many women find them useful to record their period lengths and dates to get a heads-up when the next one is likely to arrive; others use them to know which days each month they are most fertile. When trying to conceive a baby, this form of health monitoring is extremely useful. They can also predict when you might experience low moods, cramping or soreness. 

The best part is how easy and accessible it is to be able to track this on an app, rather than working things out on the kitchen calendar, which isn’t very discreet. Popular menstrual cycle trackers and fertility apps include Glow, Clue, and Ovia. 

#4 - Measure Your Waist 

This old-fashioned method is still a goodie. According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, a man’s waist size should be no more than 40 inches, and a woman’s 35. Any greater than this and a person has increased risk of suffering common problems associated with obesity, like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer and osteoarthritis.

For these reasons, keeping a check on your waist size is a handy way to know if you’re overstepping the line where obesity is concerned. The BMI and weight scale methods are flawed, not taking into account muscle mass. If your waist measurements exceed the recommended inches, consider upping your exercise regime and swapping pizza for salad.

#5 - Heart Rate & ECG Monitor

If you have arrhythmia or have suffered a heart attack, you may have to track your heart rate and have regular ECG (electrocardiogram) tests at the hospital. Nowadays, there’s technology and devices that mean you can track this pretty well at home – though not as thoroughly and accurately as with hospital equipment.

The Kito+ is a device that connects to iPhone cases, consisting of a credit card-shaped sensor and a small connector that charges the device. To take a heart reading, you slip the device into a specialized iPhone case and place your fingers onto the sensor, after opening the Kito app on your phone. It then shows you a graph of your heart’s electrical activity, created by reading the pulse of your heart beat in your fingers – astounding!  

No comments: