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Tech tools that help your health

Tech Tools That Help Your Health - Parents Canada

You try hard to keep your family healthy but a little help is always welcome. We’ve rounded up a few of our favourite apps and gadgets that keep body, mind and spirit shipshape.

Dad and son ipad

Rdio

Whether you’re a toddler, teen or just tired, a dance party is a great way to clear your mind and get those endorphins flowing. There’s a good chance Rdio’s vast library of more than 30 million songs includes your musical taste (even the Frozen soundtrack? Yes.) Monthly subscriptions start at $10 per month for web and mobile streaming. Available for Apple, Android and for download through Roku TV.

Brain Quest

Don’t forget to exercise your brain! Based on the beloved question-and-answer game from the bestselling Brain Quest decks, this app takes kids through an immersive journey as they tackle questions to beat the clock and rack up coins and points. Let the whole family get in on the action, with score tracking for up to three kids playing separately. Available for Grades 1 to 5 with 65 percent new material. $5, available at the Apple App Store or for download on Nook devices.

Leap Frog Leap Band

Now your kiddos can keep track of their steps just like Mom and Dad. The only activity tracker made for kids, the Leap Band encourages active play and healthy habits with 50 fun challenges. The device comes pre-loaded with 14 challenges and can be customized with one of eight interactive pets like a unicorn, dragon or monkey. Kids will be having so much fun they won’t realize they’re learning all about food, nutrition, health and hygiene, and are fine tuning their gross motor skills. $50, available at toy stores and leapfrog.com.

Help a Friend in Need

Teens and tweens spend what seems like an inordinate amount of time on Facebook. To tap into that resource, KidsHelpPhone has teamed up with the social media platform to make it easier for users to spot warning signs of depression in their FB friends. The guide reminds users to keep an eye out for signs of emotional distress in friends’ status updates, posts, messages, photos or videos. Irritability, feeling alone, insomnia posts and use of negative emoticons are just some of the red flags. The guide also encourages FB users to reach out to someone they’re worried about and not feel embarrassed about doing so. Download it at ParentsCanada.com/FriendinNeed

Recalls and Safety Alerts App

This app brings recalls and advisories from Health Canada, Transport Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency into one screen. Find out what food products, consumer items and vehicles have been recalled or deemed unsafe for your family. Available for free on Android, Apple or Blackberry platforms.

 

Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, October 2014.

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