Looking for a weight-loss coach or a free trainer? There’s an app for that

If you’re looking to shed a few pounds and get fit, you’re not alone. While you’re putting in the hard work, some high-tech tools can help keep you on track. The good news: some of the best apps are free.


These are a few of the better apps that I’ve discussed with my patients. And full disclosure: I have no financial interest in any of them!


Paid Weight Loss Apps

Calorie trackers can help count the calories you’ve taken in and how many you have left for the day.

  • Livestrong’s app “My Plate” can be used for free on your computer to track calorie intake, exercise expenditure and goals. It also has a section for diabetics. This app for BlackBerry, iPhone or iPad will set you back $2.99.

  • "Lose It!" is a free easy-to-navigate app for iPhones and iPods that helps you stay on track with your weight-loss goal by recording your daily food intake and amount of exercise.
 Available at iTunes.
  • For those wanting to fine-tune their diet by calculating protein, carbs and fat, another free app for Apple users is "40-30-30." The idea is to eat 40 per cent carbs and 30 per cent each of protein and fat per day. By entering the grams of carbs, protein and fat found on nutrition labels, you can determine the proportion of calories from each source. Available at iTunes.


Free Weght Loss Apps

You can find many free workout apps as well.

  • "Fitness Pro" for the Apple crowd is a good choice if you’re just starting out, offering various routines, exercise photos and instruction on how to do them correctly. Available at iTunes.
  • For those looking to shake up their workouts, "iPump" from Pump One (pricey at $9.99) can help stave off boredom with a huge database of different workouts and video explanations. Available at iTunes.


Quit Smoking, Too

As for other New Year’s resolutions? Stopping smoking or at least cutting down on cigarettes goes a long way to improving health. A multi-pronged attack is always better, such as nicotine replacements in the form of patches, inhalers and gum, prescription medications to help curb cravings, and, of course, counselling. The more support, the better.

So what if every time you craved a cigarette, you reached for your smartphone? The “MyQuit Coach” app can be personalized and offers the most successful tips on stopping smoking. It even helps calculate how much money you’ve saved by not smoking.


For long-term success, the key is to modify your lifestyle. And with the help of apps like these, you may no longer have any excuses.

Your Health with Dr. Rhonda Low airs weekdays during CTV News at Five and CTV News at Six.

Originally published in TV Week. For daily updates, subscribe to the free TV Week e-newsletter, or purchase a subscription to the weekly magazine.