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Android apps for improving women’s health

by Kristen Nicole

It’s important for everyone to strive for a healthy lifestyle, but we all have our special needs. Women in particular have different health goals than men, as age and dietary needs also play a role. Fortunately for the modern woman, we have countless resources at hand, many available as Android apps. Here’s a few that address fitness, breast cancer, health education, stress reduction and more.

WeightWatchers Barcode Scanner (Free)

Shopping for groceries can sometimes feel like a doctoral-level research study, reading labels for nutritional facts and ingredients, comparing each aisle’s products. The pressure is compounded for someone using a highly disciplined service like Weight Watchers. Thankfully Weight Watchers has a barcode-scanning Android app that gives you all the information you need for your personal goals. Check grocery items against Weight Watchers’ database, add it to your PointsPlus Tracker or your Favorites. You can even scan multiple products for comparisons, access your scanned history and use the PointPlus calculator right from the app. You’ll need to be an existing subscriber to Weight Watchers Online to use the full features of this app.

Women’s Health Workouts ($1.99)

Not many women’s health magazines have an Android presence, but Women’s Health was an early supporter of mobile apps. With Women’s Health Workouts you get the sleekly designed programs the print publication is known for, in a convenient mobile package. You’ll receive step-by-step workouts developed by top female trainers and experts, shareable training logs and timers, all designed to optimize your exercise goals. The app also comes with built-in support to request expert guidance. Get the pro version for full-featured access to workout plans.

Take a Break from Stress (Free)

Women take on a great responsibility in caring for their families, often combined with the added pressure of a career. Stay stress free throughout your busy day with Meditation Oasis’ app, called Take a Break from Stress. This voice-guided app comes with two programs - one for a seven-minute break, and the other for 13 minutes. You can listen with or without music, turn off the voice guide, and practice your stress reduction techniques to keep you sane throughout the day. After a while, you may be able to skip the app all together.

Pink Link (Free)

Breast cancer is a disease that affects many of us in one way or another, becoming a foremost important health concern for every woman you know. Self-examination is key to women’s health, and the Pink Link app offers a guide on how to conduct a breast self-exam. The app also lets you schedule reminders for yearly mammograms and monthly self-exams, and provides information on breast cancer screening guidelines. Pink Link is an app released by Mount Carmel, a women’s health center in Central Ohio, so if you live in the region you can also use the app to contact nearby centers. For a more general app on self-exam techniques, try Breast Test.

BabyBump Pregnancy Pro ($2.99)

Pregnancy is unique to women, and requires a great deal of attention, time and care. Simplify some of the processes around tracking your pregnancy with the Baby Bump app for Android, considered one of the most inclusive apps of its kind. View schematic embryo pictures of baby development week-by-week, along with common symptoms, cravings and bodily changes you can expect throughout the pregnancy. The app comes with a journal and a weight-tracker, so you’ll have a database to take to doctor’s visits. Your progress can also be charted for weight gain, BMI and low/high estimates against your actual weight on a weekly basis. There’s a social component for sharing pregnancy stories, a countdown widget for your homescreen, and a contraction tracker with a start/stop button when the big day arrives.