I consider myself a fairly healthy person, but sometimes, I need a second opinion to help me make sure I'm on the right track. From getting enough protein, to making sure I don't eat too much sugar, fitness apps can be really helpful. They can help me track my water, steps, exercise, and even help me set overall lifestyle goals. Studies have shown that by simply jotting down whatever you eat can be beneficial for weight loss and health in the long run. 

However, with so many different apps out there, the hunt for a suitable fit very overwhelming. There's Noom, Lose It!, MyFitnessPal, and so many more. So, in order to make your life easier, I downloaded a few of the most popular fitness apps in the app store. I tested all of them over the course of a week, and tried to figure out which one is the cream of the crop. The ones I downloaded were Fooducate, MyPlate, MyDietCoach, Lifesum, and Lose It. I used them each for an entire day, and then ranked them in order of worst to best.

NOTE: I am not using these apps to lose weight. Some people may want them for that purpose, but I primarily use them to track the added sugars I eat and make sure I'm eating a balance of grains, protein, veggies, and fat. I like that fitness apps can give me a visual of my day, and help me make healthy decisions when planning meals. I am at a healthy weight, and I would like to maintain it.

3. MyDietCoach

coffee, cake, beer
Madeleine Mason

I am baffled to why this app has four and a half stars on the App Store. Sure, maybe some people like the fun colors and the customizable avatar, but this app feels, like a sad game from 2010. When I use an app, I should enjoy looking at it.

What's even worse, is that this app relies on visual images to show progress. Unlike MyFitnessPal, which breaks down macros and calories for healthy living, this app uses an avatar (who is permanently white). Yes, you can choose between being a guy or girl, but the obnoxious femininity of this app shows when you're given the option to dress up your avatar in cute clothes! 

Don't waste your time with this one. 

3. Fooducate/Lose It!/MyPlate

beer, tea, coffee
Madeleine Mason
wine, coffee, beer
Madeleine Mason
Madeleine Mason

These apps are just okay. The one thing I'm not crazy about is that you have to pay money for some features that should be free (in my opinion). Using it feels just like using MyFitnessPal, which is fine, but what's the point of my downloading an app if it's just like one I already have? 

1. Lifesum

tea, beer, wine
Madeleine Mason

Lifesum is a visually fun app. I like how it focuses on health, rather than weight loss. Your meals are rated by a face, the healthier your meal is, the happier the face is. The best part about Lifesum is the quiz you get to take before you start inputting information.

pizza, tea, coffee, beer
Madeleine Mason
tea, beer, coffee
Madeleine Mason

After taking the quiz, Lifesum recommends a diet that best suits your individual needs. My result was called "The 5:2 Diet". Apparently you fast two days a week, and focus on clean, plant based foods the other days. I have mixed feelings about fasting for weight loss, I think it can lead to eating disorder behaviors and isn't an overall benefit for one's lifestyle. 

Anyways, you have to pay to change the settings to replace the settings to match your diet. I didn't pay, but I learned a lot about the different kinds of diets out there to help people gain a healthful lifestyle. That's the main thing I like about Lifesum, it understands that health looks different on everyone. The end goal from Lifesum is health, not weight loss. 

Overall, this experience was a bit frustrating. I was expecting each app to have something fun and unique within the program. They all fell flat, with the exception of Lifesum. I understand that all fitness apps are going to have the same components of calorie and macro counting, but shouldn't there be something special about each? Maybe one app could focus on managing sugar and carb intake, while another one could focus on sending gentle reminders to eat nourishing meals. I had such high hopes, and I was really bummed out to get the same experience after another.

If you are interested in using a fitness app, I highly recommend MyFitnessPal or Lifesum. They are easy to use, nice to look at, and are great for catering to personal needs. Now, if you excuse me, I have some apps I need to delete from my phone.