4.    Date your monthlies

Android: WomanLog Calendar

A menstrual and fertility calendar – it has a three-month summary, password protection and weight-tracking function. You can also add and edit the settings for each day.

Description: WomanLog Calendar

WomanLog Calendar

Apple: iPeriod Ultimate

Look up symptoms and moods; back up your stats; get email alerts; and includes a weight tracker and graphs. Complete with emoticons, icons symbolizing your symptoms, expected periods, fertile days, ovulation and more.

Description: iPeriod Ultimate

iPeriod Ultimate

BlackBerry: Ovulations Days

Designed for those who want to have a baby, avoid pregnancy or simply want to track monthly cycles. You can mark your start or end date of your menstrual cycle, calculate your fertile days and keep notes.

Description: Ovulations Days

Ovulations Days

5.    Track fitness levels

Android: Run Keeper

Track your fitness activities using GPS technology. You can record your distance, time, pace, calories, heart rate and map your travels. You can also customize interval workouts with audio cues.

Description: Run Keeper

Run Keeper

Apple: Fitness Builder

This has full-body workouts targeting all muscle groups. The app works as a personal trainer, taking you through each workout. You can watch video demonstrations and record a workout log.

Description: Fitness Builder

Fitness Builder

Black Berry: HandyLogs Fitness

The cardio workout calculates calories burnt; the gym workout tracks strength and progress; and the body-weight tracker monitors changes. You can also save your data to handylogs.com

Description: HandyLogs Fitness

HandyLogs Fitness

6.    Practise spiritual wellbeing

Android: Pocket Yoga

It packs more than 145 poses. Choose from three practices, difficulty levels and durations for a total of 27 sessions. It also has voice and visual instructions to guide you.

Description: Pocket Yoga

Pocket Yoga

Apple: Yoga Trainer Lite

From beginner to advanced, this provides easy-to-follow yoga workouts. It has pictures, videos and explanations of poses to assist you and you can try anything from Pranayama (breathing) to Ashtanga and other popular yoga routines.

Description: Apple: Yoga Trainer Lite

Apple: Yoga Trainer Lite

Black Berry: Active Yoga Lite

This easy-to-use app includes sequences created by expert yoga teachers. Each session contains a set of three practical and useful postures and is designed for stress relief, core strength, weight loss, increased energy, relaxation and flexibility.

Description: Active Yoga Lite

Active Yoga Lite

Apply to help

“When we found a tick on my 10-year-old daughter, my mom got out the encyclopaedia because she thought it would help.

“I immediately looked up ‘ticks’ on my cellphone and found out what to do, how to get it off her and what to look for to see if she needed further medical attention, which luckily she didn’t.

“I find that having a medical app makes things a lot more convenient, especially when you don’t have access to a computer or doctor.” – Lauren Venter, 35, Joburg

“I’d put on 16kg during my pregnancy. After giving birth, I tried to find a diet plan to fit my busy schedule. I have three children, all under four years old. It’s difficult to motivate yourself when all you want to do is eat, especially when you’re breast-feeding. I finally found a healthy-weight app to help. I managed to restrict my kJ intake, which was incredibly hard, but I lost 8.3kg, and I’m still losing weight.” – Shihaam Isaacs, 33, Cape Town

What the experts say…

The dietitian says…

“Little scientific research has been done to determine the effectiveness of health-related apps, partly because this is a new field and research can’t keep up with technological advancements. Apps don’t replace the advice of a qualified professional, but they can be an informative tool, making it easier to monitor out daily progress and encourage us to achieve our weight-loss and fitness goals.” –Taryn Ackerberg, from the Nutritional Information Centre of Stellenbosch University (NICUS)

The fitness expert says…

“While it take more than technology to get the results you want, apps are excellent support tools to keep your efforts in check.

“They’re affordable option when you don’t want to budget in a gym contract or consultant fees. But don’t rely solely on advice from one app. Many people enjoy the pedometer and accelerometer apps, but personally I’d prefer to rely on the actual devices that have been created solely for this purpose.” – Lisa Raleigh, a Durban-based lifestyle and wellness expert

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