Fitness and Technology: Tools to Help You Lose Weight

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Fitness and Technology: Tools to Help You Lose Weight


Your heart is a muscle, and just like any other muscle it needs exercise to stay healthy. A sedentary lifestyle is one of the top risk factors for heart disease. People who are inactive, overweight and have a poor diet are twice as likely to develop heart disease than an active person. Excess pounds do more than just increase your weight – they can cause pressure on your heart, forcing it to work harder than normal. Luckily it is never too late to begin exercising and making your health a priority.

Benefits of Exercise and Fitness:

Increase and improve mood
Boost energy
Sleep better
Decrease depression, stress and anxiety

Exercise and Fitness Can Protect Against:

Heart disease
Stroke
Obesity
High blood pressure

Maintaining a healthy weight and active lifestyle can be challenging and it’s hard to know where to start. Fortunately, there are many different resources you can use to track your activity and keep you motivated. Depending on your personal goals, there is a product out there that is just right for you.

A Pedometer is a small portable electronic device that counts each step a person takes by detecting motion. Some pedometers also tell you how far you’ve walked and gives you a good idea of how active you are each day. A basic pedometer ranges in price from $5 to $30.

Mobile Fitness Apps have become a popular tool used to achieve fitness. Apps are relatively personal and can assist you in counting calorie intake and estimating the amount of calories burned. Not to mention that tracking your progress becomes quick, easy and fun as the app acknowledges your achievements along the way. Fitness apps include MyFitnessPal, Fitnet and Sworkit and range in price from free to $4.99 per month.

A Heart Rate Monitor is a battery-operated device that measures and records your heart’s activity. Some models are packed with features to make training or lifestyle changes easier by tracking intensity to make sure you don’t stray far from your comfort zone. Heart rate monitor brands include: Polar FT1, Garmin Vivosmart and Mio Fuse and range in price from $50 – $225.

Apple Watch & Fitbit have advertised their robust health and activity tracking capabilities and are sure to keep you on your feet. The high-tech wristbands are able to count your daily steps and overall activity level. Some of the models actually track heart rate, food and water intake, as well as monitor your sleep cycle. Comparable products include Polar M600, Misfit, Jawbone, Fitbit Blaze and Garmin Forerunner 35. They are priced between $100 – $400.

For more information on living a heart healthy lifestyle, or to assess your personal risk of heart disease, please visit ololrmc.com/knowheartdisease.

About Dr. Carson

Donald Carson earned his bachelor of science degree in biology from Savannah State University in Savannah, Georgia, and his master of science degree in medical science from Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia. He earned his doctor of osteopathic medicine from the Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine in Blacksburg, Virginia. Dr. Carson then completed an internship and residency at Southern Illinois University in Springfield, Illinois, in family medicine. He currently practices at Family Practice Associates on Perkins Road. To schedule an appointment with him today, call (225) 761-4256.

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