Vice, Money, and Health

By Elyse Umlauf-Garneau

With the arrival of a new year comes a new set of resolutions.

There’s no shortage of apps and websites geared to the trio of most popular resolutions — health, money, and bad habits.

Poke around your favorite app-finding sites or start with this short list to find help in achieving your 2013 goals.

Curb your vices

  • ViceCalculator1 — The app tracks just how much you waste on your favorite habit, whether it’s smoking, lattes, or snacks. If your vice is downloading apps, maybe this isn’t the one for you. After all, you can easily calculate the cost of the number of lattes you drink each week.
  • Habit List2 — Use the app to create new habits, track your progress, and develop schedules and activities associated with achieving your goals.
  • Quitter3 — Still smoking? Try this app to wean yourself off cigarettes.

Shape Up

  • Fast Food Calorie Counter4 — If you’re tempted by that buffet or triple burger at your restaurant, this app will make you think twice when you see how many calories each item has.
  • Get in Shape5 — Looking for diets, workout, calorie counting? This one has all of that.
  • iMapMy6 and Everybody Walk7 help you use walking, the easiest and cheapest exercise, to achieve fitness goals. Use the apps to track your walk, find routes, see the calories you’ve burned, and so forth.
  • Pocket Yoga8 — You can’t always make it to the yoga studio, but this yoga app guides you through yoga poses wherever you are. You can choose among yoga practice styles and the length and intensity of workouts.

Fitter finances

The start of financial health starts with understanding where your money is going and then figuring out how to pare back. A slew of apps and sites help you with all things money.
Take a look at:

  • Mint9 and Pocket Expense10 — Try out some of the apps that give your complete financial picture so you can make wiser money decisions.
  • Trackeverycoin11 — The free expense tracker does just what its name implies. It lets you track every cent that comes in and goes out.
  • Bill Shrink12 — Maybe your wireless bill feels pretty pricey and you wonder what you’re really paying for. Hop over to Billshrink and answer a few questions about your wireless habits. The site will analyze your usage and needs and hunt down the best plan for you.

Find more mobile apps to help you reach your other goals at:

www.appappeal.com,
www.appolicious.com,
and www.iphoneappsfinder.com.

Home safety illustrated

There’s no time of year when home safety isn’t important, but if eliminating perils in your loved ones home is on your 2013 to-do list, the site, www.thiscaringhome.org, offers a terrific, illustrated guide.

Though the site is geared to those with various forms of memory loss, its information can assist all who are aging.

A virtual home allows you to click on various rooms to learn where dangers are, how to minimize them, as well as tips for smart changes.

As an example, a bedspread in a color that contrasts with the floor can help those who have trouble with depth perception. A lack of depth perception can be a fall hazard, and a distinct contrast can help people with the problem distinguishing the bed from the floor.

See the full virtual home at www.thiscaringhome.org/virtual_home/default.aspx.

Safe rides

When you’re shopping for a new car, crash test data are often at the top of the considerations list, along with performance, features, and aesthetics.

But if you’re 40-something or older, there are other issues to consider. Physical changes can make driving more hazardous and less comfortable.

But certain features can improve comfort and safety for drivers who fall into the mature category.

For instance, hip or leg pain, decreased leg strength, and limited knee range of motion can be addressed by picking cars with seats that adjust six ways. Changeable seats can also make getting in and out of the car easier.

Seats with lumbar support can ease back pain, and keyless entry and ignition help those with arthritic hands.

Triple A offers more information on safe, comfortable driving13 and specific car models14 with features that address specific physical limitations.

For more about safe driving among seniors, see www.helpguide.org/elder/senior_citizen_driving.htm.

And seniors looking to brush up on driving skills can find a refresher class at http://mature.idrivesafely.com.


** All websites and applications included in this article are provided by third parties. Their inclusion in the article is by way of example and does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement of those websites or applications. Users should review the websites or application (especially the terms of use and privacy policy) to assure the site or application is appropriate for use by a particular individual.

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