Unfortunately, we Americans suffer from a variety of health related issues, including such maladies as high blood pressure and diabetes. Apparently, these conditions are complicated by our choice of lifestyle and have been confirmed by recent statistics drummed out to us on several nightly news programs. It seems that more and more of us are falling victim to excesses that result in our becoming a nation of overweight individuals who are actually malnourished due to our reliance on fast food. Since this fast food dependence and our obsession with video games became prevalent, our nation is experiencing an all time high with increasing weight problems, which in turn causes daily sleep disturbances such as insomnia and sleep apnea. To combat these stereotypical tendencies, we need to curb our desires to eat the super-sized meals and to change our habits from being stationary all day to integrating motion into our day-to-day activities.
So, one may ask, how can these changes be easier for us? Well, it’s as easy as a few simple words: ‘There’s an app for that.’ This app, called UP, is offered by a company called Jawbone to monitor our activity, sleep patterns, and other bodily functions. It uses a bracelet in conjunction with the iPhone to monitor these activities.
This bracelet comes in various colors and sizes and is water resistant, so you can wear the bracelet even when you take a shower. That means that even this activity is monitored! Other activities that UP monitors include:
- Your daily activities such as walking, any strenuous exercise, along with the intensity of the activity you perform and how many calories you burn.
- Inactivity — UP vibrates an alert to remind you to get up and get some exercise.
- Sleep patterns, which include how deep you are sleeping and how much time you spend awake during the night.
- What you eat — UP makes a photo journal so you can see how certain foods affect how you feel.
The bottom line is you will be held accountable, to yourself, for your behavioral habits for the low cost of $99.99. The application is currently limited for availability from a company called Jawbone and is limited to use on the Apple iPhone. The odd part of the device is that it needs to be physically connected to the iPhone application for it to record data. In a day where wireless is the norm, this seems like an inconvenience to me. However, the good news is that an Android model is coming soon, so even more smart phone users will be able to take advantage of this application.