10 Best Apps to Boost Your Health

Our top 10 picks to help you get better sleep, reduce stress, exercise, eat better, and more.

There are thousands of health apps out there that promise to do a lot for the low-low price of $6.99 a month. “Lose weight in weeks!” “Get a 6-pack!” “Learn to conquer your anxiety!” Can they really deliver?  

Health apps can be helpful tools to supplement your fitness journey if you know what you’re after. 

You want to make sure you get the most bang for your buck – or at least, the best for free. We’ve included both in this top 10 list of helpful health apps that get to where you want to be – mentally and physically.  

Table of Contents 
MyFitnessPal – Calorie, nutrient, and macro tracking
Cronometer – Health goal tracker
Auto Sleep – Sleep tracker
Mindshift CBT – Mental health aid
WorkOutDoors – Workout maps
Fooducate – Digital food coach
Nutritionix – Nutritionist-backed food tracking
Noom – Food psychology and eating habits
Nike Training Club – Virtual exercise and training
Choosing The Best Health App For You

MyFitnessPal – Calorie, nutrient, and macro tracking  

Best For: Calorie tracking for weight loss  

Price: Free (with optional premium purchase) 

App Store Rating: 4.1 Android / 4.7 iOS 

MyFitnessPal is a great health app if you’re trying to keep track of your calorie intake. Each day, you can track what you eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (and snacks in-between) as well as what you burn during your workouts if you link to other health apps like the iPhone’s Health app or your Fitbit.  

The MyFitnessPal app has a library of foods you can use to log your meals with the option to manually add whatever it doesn’t. For instance, you can search for a brand’s food (ie, Trader Joe’s orange chicken) and log how much you ate according to portion size. If that food isn’t in their library, you can add the nutritional info and add it to their database. It’s worth noting this is made easy if you pay for the premium feature, in which case all you have to do is scan a product’s barcode and it will pull up the product’s information instantly.  

MyFitnessPal also keeps track of your water intake, your steps, macros, and other nutrients as well if you’re really trying to stay on top of things. Currently, the app is only charging for premium features like barcode scans, custom macro tracking, and ad removal for $19.99 monthly. BUT the app itself is free to use if you’re interested in its basic calorie tracking if you’re willing to take the time to type some things out yourself. 

It’s a great way for beginners to keep all their health info one place and monitor everything they’ve eaten in a straight-forward way. 

Download MyFitnessPal here: iOS & Android 

Cronometer – Health goal tracker 

Best for: Calorie logging, weight loss, fitness tracking, and nutrition 

Price: Free 

App Store Rating: 4.6 Android / 4.7 iOS 

As an alternative to MyFitnessPal, Cronometer (aka Calorie Counter by Cronometer) is another great health app that helps you track your food consumption and exercise. Their about page touts that they are “the most accurate, comprehensive nutrition tracking app on earth” because their nutritional data comes from lab-analyzed sources. Cronometer is also great for those following diets including paleo, vegan, or keto to keep track of their macros and dietary needs. 

The app includes nutritional tracking, water consumption, meal and exercise logging, fasting timers, and custom diet support. It syncs with other apps like Fitbit, Strava, and Keto Mojo to give you a more personalized experience. The more you log, the more feedback you’ll get about your health and food habits.  

Download Cronometer here: iOS & Android 

AutoSleep – Sleep tracker 

Best for: Tracking sleep habits, understanding sleep cycles, and analysis of sleep patterns 

Price: $4.99  

App Store Rating: 4.7 iOS 

Good sleep is an important part of staying healthy. Getting enough rest helps lower your risk for serious health problems, reduces stress, keeps your immune system strong, contributes to better mental health, and maintaining a healthy weight. Understanding the kind of sleep you get and how you can get better sleep is key to staying healthy in a lot of ways! 

AutoSleep links to your Apple Watch to track your sleep health. Each night you have a “sleep goal” which lets you know if you’ve gotten enough sleep during the night – a lot like the move ring works on the Apple Watch. It offers a “sleep rating” as well which tells you what the quality of that sleep was.  

While the sleep app on your iPhone can do most of this, AutoSleep gives a deeper look into sleep stages and estimates how much REM sleep (vital for mood, memory, and mental capability) you get in a night as well as advice on how to improve your sleep habits.  

Download AutoSleep here: iOS  

Mindshift CBT – Mental health aid  

Best for: Anxiety and depression relief, forming healthy habits, and meditation 

Price: Free 

App Store Rating: 3.8 Android / 4.2 iOS 

Like sleep, mental health affects your physical health and things like anxiety and stress can take a toll on your body. Mindshift CBT offers strategies developed around Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) that are designed to help you relax and be mindful so that you can reshape the way you think. It offers resources to help you understand your anxiety and offers coping strategies and other ways to work through negative thinking and worry. Mindshift CBT helps you accomplish this depending on what works best for you – from journaling, guided meditation, grounding techniques, and other kinds of practical CBT efforts.  

The app lets you set goals for yourself and does daily check-ins on your mood and overall wellbeing to guide you to mental stability. It also offers a community forum where other users can support each other’s journeys in a moderated, safe space so you’ll never feel alone in your mental health journey. 

Download Mindshift CBT here: iOS & Android 

WorkOutDoors – Workout maps 

Best for: Runners, cyclists, hikers, other outdoor exercisers 

Price: $6.99 

App Store Rating: 4.7 iOS 

If you’re a big outdoor person, this app helps you with your workouts. It’s a fully customizable app that you can use on your iPhone or iWatch to plan your route – whether that be on a bike ride, a hike, or a run. It monitors your heart rate and your pace and can offer motivation and reminders when either starts to slow down.  

The app is a bit different from other running apps in that it offers extra features like a full vector map display that tells you how far away you are from places, a general compass and a compass that directs you to the beginning of your route, topographical data, trail names, waypoints, offline map downloads, and live tracking of your location via GPS.  

You’ll never get lost, and it’s easy to make sure you keep your heart rate up for super effective cardio

Download WorkOutDoors here: iOS 

Fooducate – Digital food coach 

Best for: Calorie tracking, macro calculating, water intake, and food barcode scanning 

Price: Free (in-app purchase upgrades from $9.99) 

App Store Rating:  4.3 Android / 4.6 iOS 

Doing more than tracking what you eat, Fooducate is an app that helps you make better food choices when out grocery shopping. The way it works is, you scan a barcode, and the app will give you a pros and cons list based off of its nutritional information, and healthier alternatives to buy.  

It takes into account more than just a product’s calories and instead looks at its nutritional information as a whole. This is especially handy for people that are on strict diets or are tracking their macro and micronutrients.  

Download Fooducate here: iOS & Android 

Nutritionix – Nutritionist-backed food tracking 

Best for: Calorie tracking from registered dietitians 

Price: $6 monthly or $29 annually 

App Store Rating:  4.4 Android / 4.8 iOS 

Nutritionix is another barcode-scanner app with a large, verified database of food that helps you keep track of your calories. With over 900,000 food items logged in their system, you’ll have no trouble keeping track of what you eat!  

It offers customizable tools and voice control features for easy food and exercise logging. The best part is, the app is maintained and developed by registered dietitians, so the information is highly accurate and helpful.  

All of this is great if you’re looking for a no-fuss tracking app – especially if you’re someone who eats a combination of takeout and home-cooked meals.  

Download Nutritionix here: iOS & Android 

Noom – Food psychology and eating habits 

Best for: understanding your eating habits, nutrition, and nutrition tracking 

Price: $59 a month or $199 a year (free 1-week trial sign-up) 

App Store Rating:   4.1 Android / 4.7 iOS 

Noom was developed by behavioral psychologists to help users take control of emotional eating and educate themselves about nutrition and their bodies. It helps you track what you eat and uses a traffic-light system to show how calorically- or nutritionally dense a food is. Red indicates foods that are highly processed and are best avoided, yellow indicates foods that should be eaten in moderation, and green signify foods that are nutrient-dense foods that you should eat lots of. Noom also pairs you with a coach to guide you through the bumps down the road. 

Understanding your eating habits can take you one step closer to making better food decisions. Do you eat when you’re stressed? Do you eat late at night? These things make a difference in your metabolic cycle and build habits you might not be aware of.  

While the app offers a free weekly trial, it should be noted that Noom is designed to be used over the course of several months, so you should be prepared to subscribe if you want to use it long-term.  

Download Noom here: iOS & Android 

Nike Training Club – Virtual exercise and training 

Best for: home exercise, multi-week training programs, and virtual guided workouts 

Price: Free 

App Store Rating:   4.3 Android / 4.8 iOS 

If you’re a homebody or just trying to save on gym membership fees, Nike Training Club offers workouts you can do from the comfort of your own home, with or without equipment (which also makes it perfect for those who want to exercise while travelling!) Specifically, it offers a range of workouts available on both instructional videos and audio recordings like strength training, cardio, yoga, HIIT, core, stretching, and more.  

The app is totally free (which is definitely a big plus), but not only that is has unique features that aren’t gatekept by premium subscription fees. Nike Training Club allows you to create a workout schedule, sends you exercise reminders, and has workout programs that build on one another. This means the difficulty increases a little each week as you progress, so you’ll never plateau. You can also do individual workouts to supplement your routine (or if you want to take it slow) that range from 5 minutes to an hour based on the muscle group you want to focus on. 

Every program is customizable, and if you’re not sure where to start, the app provides a quiz to guide you in the right direction. You can keep track of your progress and gives you badges for every milestone you reach.  

Download Nike Training Club here: iOS & Android 

FitOn – Fitness, workouts, and nutrition 

Best for: live classes, guided exercise videos, fitness, and healthy eating 

Price: Free (in-app purchases for premium features) 

App Store Rating:   4.7 Android / 4.9 iOS 

FitOn has video-based workouts that you can do at home, like yoga, muscle-group focused strength training, core workouts, stretching, and more. The workouts are all led by trainers to help you get your form and timing right. If you have a FitBit, iWatch, or other heartrate monitor, the app displays your heart rate on-screen.  

Though the app charges for personal meal plans and FitBit device connectivity, everything else on the app is free! You get all the trainer-led workouts, leaderboard access, guided meditations, messaging services, and guides for healthy eating, stress relief, and getting better sleep at no charge. No reason to say no to that! 

Download FitOn here: iOS & Android 

Choosing The Best Health App For You

When searching the app store, you’ll be overwhelmed by the number of health apps available. To narrow down the results, follow these 4 tips: 

1. Remember your goals 

“Health” is a broad term that can encompass many areas of your wellbeing. Do you want an app that helps your memory? One that helps you get fit? Figure out what you want to focus on and go from there.  

To start, try writing down what your health goals are and then look for key words related to those goals. For instance, if you want to get in shape, you might want to search for “fitness,” “exercise,” or “workout.” This will eliminate apps that won’t be as helpful to you. 

2. Look for evidence-based strategies 

Apps can promise a lot, but will they follow through?  

Research has shown that these strategies work when trying to change unhealthy behaviors. Look for apps that follow these strategies for a more promising success rate: 

  • Self-monitoring and accountability 
  • Clear goal setting 
  • Social or community support 
  • A reward system 
  • Reminders or cues like push notifications 

3. Check reviews 

Trust your peers! What an app says it’s like versus what it’s actually like makes a difference. See what complaints users have about the app’s functionality or any bugs or security concerns.  

Always be aware that companies can pay to have people or bots leave positive reviews as well, so the more reviews an app has the more likely you are to get an accurate picture.  

4. Is it easy to use? 

An app that isn’t user-friendly, is going to be difficult to use effectively. Make sure you understand how the app works and check out if it has a trial period you can do before committing. After all, you want an app that’s going to be helpful and make your life easier, not the opposite! 

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