The Best Apps for Weight Loss
Smart new weight loss tools
With a new slim-you-down app born every minute (or so it seems), it’s hard to know what’s worth your download. And finding the standouts is crucial—a recent survey found 35% of us use an app before even getting out of bed in the morning.
We loaded up our smartphones and tablets to find the latest and greatest. Move over, Angry Birds!
($0.99; mealsnap.com; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)
This app analyzes a pic of your plate, then gives you a ballpark calorie range. We tried it on a steak, rice, and roasted asparagus plate at the local steakhouse, which clocked in at between 329 and 434 calories (a nicely modest splurge).
Why didn’t anyone think of this before?
Nike Training Club
(free; iTunes Store; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)
Create a playlist from your library to sync with one of 73 "coached" circuit routines (or let the app do it for you).
We appreciated the countdown toward the end of each set—it kept us going during the final excruciating seconds of muscle-shaking moves like plank.
The CarbLovers Diet
($1.99–$3.99; mobile.viaden.com; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)
You get to choose from a whopping 300 poses; the how-to’s are modeled by an actual easy-to-follow person (not a graphic); and because it separates poses by level and type, it was a cinch to turn favorite moves into a custom routine.
Shake a Snack
($0.99; shakeasnack.com; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)
Give your device a jiggle, and a virtual slot machine rings up a three-ingredient snack for 100 to 300 calories.
We scored a totally yummy 170-calorie Greek yogurt–pumpkin–graham cracker creation.
(free; fooducate.com; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android)
Use your phone’s camera to scan barcodes of foods mid–shopping trip, then find out their grades based on ingredients and nutrients.
It steered us away from a honey wheat bread (a mere C+, thanks to refined flour) and toward an equally tasty 100% whole-wheat loaf (A-).
Tempo Magic Pro
($4.99; lolofit.com; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)
This lets you adjust a song’s tempo to match your workout speed without making it sound at all weird.
So for us, Katy Perry’s E.T. sounded just as awesome timed for a leisurely warm-up as it did revved up for a sprint.
(free; mapmyfitness.com; for iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, BlackBerry)
Find a terrific running route wherever you are, then use your phone’s GPS to track and map your workout.
We recently found a Minneapolis three-miler close to down-town that wound alongside the Mississippi River and through the park. Free? Try priceless.