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The Global Wellness Institute, a non-profit organization, defines wellness as “the active pursuit of activities, choices and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health” and estimates that “people will increasingly use devices to manage their personal wellbeing, including monitoring diets, sleep patterns or emotional health; managing exercise programs; or developing a meditation practice.”
And while some may say that technology, or rather our addiction to it, is one of the reasons why we’re paying more attention to our health and wellness choices nowadays, there are always two sides of every story. The truth is that technology also greatly improves our lives, and can be used to our advantage when it comes to our well-being.
From workout apps to wearable tech and smart kitchen appliances, it has never been easier to maintain and adopt new healthy habits. Here are the best wellness gadgets on the market right now that can significantly improve your wellness routine.
Apple Watch Series 4
Apple CEO Tim Cook calls the new Apple Watch “the guardian of your health” and, hyperbole aside, there’s a lot of truth to that. The company recently announced even more enhancements to the Series 4 model software that will let users track their menstrual cycles and monitor long-term activity trends. And then there’s also the new noise tracking feature which alerts you if sound levels around you can damage your hearing. And of course, that’s on top of all the other game-changing wellness features the Series 4 watch debuted with to begin with—namely the heart rate monitor which acts as an ECG, and the built-in accelerometer which detects if you’ve fallen and can send an emergency message if you remain immobile for more than 60 seconds. Breathe, Apple’s proprietary meditation app is also now available as a watch face which makes accessing it a breeze. The watch is also water-resistant so if you’re headed for a dip in the ocean you don’t have to take it off.
To buy: from $399, apple.com
Mirror Home Gym
People describe the Mirror as going to an actual gym to have a one-on-one workout class (or a group one) except you don’t have to leave your house to do it, and it doesn’t require you to have a separate room full of gym equipment. Plus, it looks really good on your wall.
The Mirror basically enables you to work out at home with an instructor and monitor your movements (so you can adjust them if you’re doing something wrong). You can choose from a variety of on-demand classes such as cardio, yoga, barre, HIIT and so many more. On top of that, you can live-stream over 50 classes per week. Lastly, the Mirror comes with a heart rate monitor to better optimize your workouts and enhance your experience.
To buy: $1,495 plus $39/month class subscription, mirror.co
Muse 2: The Brain Sensing Headband
Meditation and tech gadgets don’t really go hand in hand. After all, we meditate so we can disconnect completely from any distractions but this headband can actually improve your meditation sessions. The company says that it “provides real-time feedback on your brain activity, heart rate, breathing, and body movements to help you build a consistent meditation practice.” It works with sensors on the forehead and behind your ears to track your brain’s activity and help you focus through sounds that you have pre-selected. For example, if you choose to hear ocean waves and your mind is calm, you will hear the soothing sound of waves, but if you get distracted, the wind and waves will pick up until you focus back on your breathing. You can also choose to have a fully guided meditation or no guide at all. Once your session is over, you can see a summary of it on your phone through the company’s app and track your progress over time.
To buy: $250, amazon.com
Royal Hidrate Spark 3 Smart Water Bottle
Sometimes the most simple of things, like staying hydrated, is a challenge when you’re running chores all day long. Enter Royal Hidrate Spark 3—a smart water bottle that will help you stay on track with your water intake goal. The bottle monitors how much water you drink and if you are falling behind, it starts glowing to remind you to take a sip. The company’s free app also tracks your overall water intake and can be synced with other fitness trackers like Fitbit, Apple Watch and Health, Under Armour Record, Nokia Health Mate, and Google Fit. Both the lid and the bottle are dishwasher safe and because there are no cables or ports you don’t have to worry about water damage.
To buy: $55, amazon.com
NutriBullet Balance Bluetooth-Enabled Smart Blender
You probably already know (or have) about NutriBullet, but the new Balance blender is a total game-changer. If you’ve ever tracked your calorie and nutrition intake, you know how time-consuming and, let’s face it, annoying it could be to weigh every ingredient of your meal and try to guess how many calories it is. NutriBullet does it all for you thanks to a smart sensor that monitors nutritional information in real-time for every ingredient you put into your smoothie. That way you know exactly how much fat, protein, and carbs go into each of your drinks. Another plus? NutriBullet’s app also features hundreds of recipes that can be filtered according to your fitness goals.
To buy: $136, amazon.com
Oura Ring 2
Oura may look just like a pretty ring but it’s so much more than that. It features sensors and infrared LEDs (light-emitting diodes) that measure your body temperature, pulse and track your activity. It is especially useful for those who’d like to get some insight into their sleeping patterns. It not only measures your total sleep time, but it also shows any disturbances, how much time it takes you to fall asleep, and the length of your light, REM, and deep sleep. Because of its sleek design and compact size it’s easy to forget you’re even wearing it and will not interfere with any of your daily activities.
To buy: from $299, ouraring.com