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Things to Consider when Choosing an App

Apps can be convenient and helpful tools, but they may not always provide the most accurate health information to users. Here are a few points to help you find the best possible mobile apps to suit your needs:

  • Anyone can create an app. Check to see if the app is associated with a trusted organization that provides reliable nutrition or physical activity advice (examples: Dietitians of Canada, Health Canada, Centre for Disease Control, Heart and Stroke).
  • Smartphone apps that track physical activity or dietary information may not be accurate.
  • Try to make sure the app is Canadian, since American recommendations for nutrition are different from the Canadian guidelines.
  • Apps can help make tracking and self-monitoring easier for you, but apps may not change habits on their own.  
Important: Remember, mobile apps should never be used in place of advice from health professionals.
 
Other ways to find reliable healthy eating and physical activity information: 
  1. Contact your local Northwestern Health Unit office and ask to speak with a Health Educator or a Registered Dietitian. 
  2. Eat Right Ontario is a free service where you can either call (1-877-510-5012) or email a Registered Dietitian to get your questions answered about health and nutrition.
  3. Websites are also a valuable tool to start your search for reliable health information:
    1. App review – www.foodandnutrition.org
    2. Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology- www.csep.ca
    3. Eat Tracker – www.eatracker.ca
    4. Participaction- www.participaction.ca
    5. Public Health Agency of Canada- www.publichealth.gc.ca

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