Like it or not, our smartphones have become an essential part of our health and wellbeing. Whether it's connecting with friends, making new relationships, looking up dinner recipes or streaming music for our workouts, for most of us, our phones play an important part in feeling good. Now, there are a whole host of new ways we can use our everyday tech to boost our wellbeing - including an assortment of apps aimed at just that.
Track your period, manage your sleep cycle, ease stress and find health-boosting recipes with our edit of the best wellness apps on your phone's store right now - after all, if we're ordering takeaways and taxis at a tap of a button, why not meditation sessions too? Your body (and mind) will thank you for it…
Meditation and mindfulness is made simple with Headspace, the app that counts Gwyneth Paltrow and Emma Watson as fans. Literally giving users a workout for the brain - led by former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe - the premise is to take ten minutes a day to listen in and clear your mind. So what are the benefits? Users report better attention spans, alertness and instant calm.
Swot-up on your cycle with period-tracking app Clue, and learn more about how your period affects you. With the options to input symptoms such as cramps and headaches throughout the month, as well as lifestyle factors such as alcohol, sleep and sex, you'll quickly build up a picture of how your cycle not only affects your physical health, but your mental health too. An essential tool for any woman looking to get to know her body better.
READ MORE: 5 ways to boost your mood
Loved by lifestyle bloggers and influencers, 8fit takes an all-encompassing approach to health and fitness - allowing users to personalise their workouts to their strengths and weaknesses, teamed with healthy and delicious recipes that are easy to follow (and allow you to plan ahead and shop for the week). Essentially an online personal trainer that you can tailor to your own needs, no gym membership necessary.
4. My Possible Self
If your mental health is a concern, My Possible Self may be the app for you. Use the 'moments' function to monitor your feelings and recognise any patterns or triggers in your behaviour, and the self-help 'modules' to tackle issues such as stress, anxiety, loss or major life changes.
5. Deliciously Ella
A recipe book in your pocket, cult lifestyle blogger Deliciously Ella's popular app brings her delicious plant-based recipes straight to your phone, with nearly 300 nutritious dishes to choose from. Everything is vegan friendly, gluten-free and refined sugar free, so it's ideal whether you're looking for a healthy mid-week meal or considering extending your veganuary pledge…
6. The Flo App
Another menstral cycle app but one with a pin code lock which makes those worried about privacy feel much more secure. This app is particularly good for those looking to be able to plan around their periods, perhaps if they're booking a holiday and would prefer not to be on, or for those looking to get pregnant. It tracks periods, ovulation and fertility and gives great insights throughout the month about how your body is working at specific times.
7. Sleep Cycle
Does sleep generally stress you out? Do you feel like you constantly don't get enough of it or, at least, your quality of sleep isn't that great? This app could seriously help. Tracking your sleep cycle throughout the night, based on movement and sound analysis, it works to wake you up when you are at your lightest sleep which means you'll be much less groggy and grumpy rising.
8. Smoke Free
Looking to give up? Download Smoke Free. This app is genius because not only can you track cravings and progress, which will help deter you from lighting up, it will tell you every single penny you've saved by packing it in and the hours of life you've saved too. If that's not motivational, I don't know what is.
9. Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock
Is one of your New Year’s resolutions to get more sleep and stop the endless scrolling through Instagram before bed? Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock is an intelligent alarm clock that tracks your sleep patterns and wakes you up in light sleep, helping you to feel more rested and energised.
Leading messaging app Viber, connects over 900 million users around the globe and is a digital platform that provides users with access to supportive online communities and groups. Online communities are a great way in which people can hold themselves accountable and seek motivation from likeminded individuals. Group chats can offer support for fitness, cooking and book recommendations.
Streaks is a to-do list that helps you form good habits, and an essential app to hold you accountable to all your New Year’s goals. The app allows you to track up to twelve tasks you want to complete each day and the goal is to build a streak of consecutive days. Whether it is going for a run, reading a chapter of a book or quitting smoking – Streaks can help you keep track of these tasks.