rand9 is the brainchild of BJ Neilsen; Software Developer, Designer, Outdoor Enthusiast, Husband, and Father of two. Hi.
I love to focus on creating and deploying complex web systems. The internet has been my canvas for over a decade. I'm constantly reﬁning development practices to implement smart, fast, and efficient solutions. I excel at building software that brings the right experience to the customer.
While the majority of my career focus has been on the web platform, recent projects have taken me into the mobile development arena, most notably for the iPhone platform. For an exhaustive look at my technical DNA, please refer to my résumè.
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The revolution in mobile applications or apps is a growing phenomenon. Some, like the WhatsApp, have achieved an undisputed triumph by getting settled into everyday life, as well as on the phone. In the field of nutrition and sport there are successful applications , although none has yet managed to reap so much applause and downloads. The majority is in English and in the case of nutrition, more than in sport or gastronomy, they show that there is no travel. This article discusses the requirements that should be met by nutrition and healthy living apps and analyzes what can be expected, for the moment, from them.
Buying a static bike does not mean getting to do an hour of exercise daily. Moreover, the “graveyard of static bikes” could also be called the graveyard of good intentions. This image serves to illustrate what can happen with the downloaded apps to use as a tool of help and encouragement to improve diet and exercise. In short, to achieve a healthier life. As with a static bike, after the will comes the implementation, and this is where it fails many times, although the fact of activating the need is the first step towards a possible success.
The interest to acquire and practice good habits is reinforced with an application designed and programmed for it. But, as revealed the analysis of 16 free mobile apps related to weight control and eating habits performed by EROSKI CONSUMER, at the moment are useful to make a diary of the diet, not to establish dietary guidelines .
Applications are useful for dieting, shots and injections, not dietary guidelines
Personal attention remains irreplaceable, if a person’s need goes beyond wanting to improve or strengthen healthy life and pursues an even more ambitious goal, such as curing a disease or a pathology. Put another way: just as a diet of thinning, or diabetic, or renal must be individual and individualized, an application does not cure and does not replace a practitioner. Much less does it if, as is already happening on some occasions, it reinforces false myths or its guidelines are based on the short paths of miracle diets and exercise tables without effort.
However, apps open up several possibilities and offer many benefits , although not all are advantages . If you have this clear, you can advance its use and imagine its scope. A Delphi study conducted by the Computer Committee of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics advanced that the applications are an excellent tool for the storage of particular data, for optimal use, as well as for sharing knowledge of everything related With nutrition. In addition, it emphasized its effectiveness in decision making.
One tool that begins to conquer your audience is the EROSKI CONSUMER recipes app . It is an example of the balance between what is offered and what can be achieved with it. Thanks to this application, the smartphone receives a menu of the day made with healthy recipes and ruled by a nutritional criterion. In addition, it allows the preparation of a nutritional profile adjusted to the alimentary tastes and even pathologies of the user. For people who want to be aware of their diet, it includes a nutritional semaphore through a color system that shows in a clear and complete the nutritional values of each food. It also informs the percentage of calories and nutrients that represent the amounts ingested with respect to the Guideline Daily Amount (CDO). From here, success is only achieved if the tool is used. Putting into practice what you have decided to incorporate into your habits, get to interact with that app sharing photos or reflections: there is the challenge.
It is the same with the applications that accompany the physical exercise . There are those that help to trace the route or calculate the user’s caloric expenditure in the outings to run and those who want to inspire the exercise outdoors . There are also many that relate to fitness, adapted to aerobic exercises, which simulate virtual gyms or schedule specific workouts of buttocks, legs or abdomen. Even without being apps properly said, in the market there are accessories such as wristbands or pulsometers that digitize the exercise in the search for a better, more effective and efficient result.
The future of applications, according to the aforementioned American magazine of reference, can be expected to be a success: knowledge and service delivery will use these tools. The relationship between the sender and the receiver will be consolidated through technology, but not even the most daring gurus dare to describe how. It is envisaged that the communication will be personalized. There are still few examples, but they already exist, in which the follow-up of a patient and the provision of individual care is done through programs developed for this purpose.
One was documented in the first quarter of 2014. The Fairview Health Services in Minnesota involved 41 state primary care services to offer specific apps to chronic patients. The field study determined that the results of use of the applications with real patients were low, but the efficiency among those who used them was very high. The patient familiar with its use benefited from it, although the resistance or unwillingness to include it in the habits was the majority.
Developing healthy eating apps must have nutrition specialists
During the “Food & Nutrition” organized by the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics , Dr. Catherine Frederico (a member of the American Nutrition Society, a professor at Newbury College and Regis College and creator of specialized apps) The technological applications to nutrition is a new and growing field with opportunities. However, he warned that while large and small companies are working on their development, they should not forget to include a nutrition specialist in the team from the beginning. This point was made in describing how the medical applications that have achieved their consolidation and their success, that is, the patients’ acceptance, have counted on specialists of different pathologies throughout the development process.
No doubt, the connection is guaranteed, but a generic diet for slimming served by a machine is no good. A diet developed by a dietitian for his patient, whom he follows up with and who maintains a relationship through an app they both know, is a tool that will lead to success. It is, in short, to unite will with habit , culminating with the attainment of the initial goal: to lead a healthy life.