Unhealthy sedentary lifestyles, underlying physical conditions, overeating, age, and eating the wrong foods are the most common reasons for being overweight, and many smartphone apps do a brisk business in helping people trim off excess pounds or maintain the weight they’re already at. Apps can be enormously helpful in moderating eating habits to help people lose weight, but you want to pick the right app for optimal results — and there are many options. Weight loss apps often offer personalized coaching, compatibility with various fitness trackers and smart scales, and help with deciphering food labels and bar codes.
Some apps also employ tracking tools to monitor your weight, food intake, and exercise habits. Others provide guidance for grocery shopping or eating out. Many seek to boost motivation by featuring community support, point systems, and documentation tools. So whether you want to lose weight for health reasons or simply because you want to, here are some of the best weight-loss specialty apps available for smartphones.
Noom is effective because it examines the psychology of overeating in a series of self-paced mini-courses designed to impart specific knowledge, tools, and skills to not only change your habits but also your attitudes toward nutrition. The app’s approach to weight loss and behavior change was created by doctors, psychologists, nutritionists, and personal trainers, and it includes tools like food logging, interactive lessons, coaching with personalized goal setting, hundreds of healthy recipes, and group support. Noom members lose an average of 18 pounds in 16 weeks, and over 86% of users keep the weight off for over a year. The app is free to download with pricing at $59 per month, decreasing as you commit to longer time periods.
Whether it’s Keto, vegan, or any other named diet specialty, you can count on Lose It to help you identify a weight loss routine. The app is a calorie counter and food diary app that tracks your macro, carb, and calorie intake. Lose It helps you stick to your diet by setting your goals and tracking your diet, food, and exercise to lose weight. Just enter your profile details, and the app takes over to calculate the best daily calorie budget for you. Then, easily track your food, weight, and activity while gaining insight into your macro, carb, protein, sugar, fat, and overall calorie and food intake on a daily basis. Other app features include a bar code scanner, photo-based food tracker and calorie counter, macro, protein, water, carb, sugar, body measurements, sleep cycle counter, workout planner, fitness app sync, challenges, meal planning recipes, and more. Lose It basic is free, but you can upgrade to Premium for additional features.
MyFitnessPal is an all-purpose app that helps you lose weight and stay healthy. Track your food intake with a large food database, barcode scanner, recipe importer, calorie counter, macro tracker, restaurant logger, water tracking, and more. You can set a goal to change your eating habits over time. The app syncs with more than 50 third-party apps and devices to log your exercise and steps, and it has hundreds of exercises and workouts, including cardio and strength. A bustling community lets you add friends and track news feed updates. You can chart and share your progress with graphs, photos, and nutrition reports. The app is free for a seven-day trial, and after that, it costs $10 per month or $50 a year.
WW (Weight Watchers)
Weight Watchers is among the most popular weight loss brands on the planet, so it’s no surprise there’s an app (renamed WW). It features an in-depth personal assessment of your eating habits and preferences to match you with a custom weight-loss plan. The app takes a holistic approach to nutrition, movement, mindset, and sleep. It helps you incorporate healthier choices into your diet and lose weight with a point-based budget and food list. The barcode scanner can scan foods and offers an extensive food database of 300,000 items. You can sync your fitness device and convert your daily moves alongside hundreds of on-demand, equipment-free workouts. The WW app includes weekly check-in, progress reports, action plans, updated sleep tracking, water tracking, and weight tracking. WW has also partnered with meditation and sleep app Headspace to bring you mindfulness and coaching. A membership includes food, activity, and weight tracking features, a wellness rewards program, 24/7 live coaching, and access to the online community.
Fooducate’s specialty is helping you lose weight by analyzing and recommending foods based on their ingredient quality. The app analyzes the information on product nutrition panels and ingredient lists. You can scan labels to discover elements like added sugars, artificial sweeteners, MSG, food colorings, genetically modified organisms, additives, and preservatives. It also helps you track your calories, macros, and workouts with motivation from a supportive community. Track your food intake and exercise, the quality of your caloric intake, and macros like protein, fats, and carbs. Its database includes more than 250,000 products, each with a personalized nutrition grade. That’s in addition to health and diet tips from nutrition experts. Premium features offer extra ad-free information about specific diets, GMOs, gluten, and allergies. A Diet Kickstart gives you a 10-day plan to help you get started and even helps you choose the healthiest foods for your dog and cat. The app is free to download, and in-app purchases range from $1 to $90.
With some 12 million members, MyNetDiary acts as a calorie counter, food log, macronutrient tracker, and weight-loss, diet, and nutrition assistant. The app helps you set a weight goal and target date, calculate a calorie budget, and log and follow daily meals and exercise. You can use any kind of diet, including low-carb, Keto, high-protein, low-fat, Mediterranean, vegetarian, vegan, and simple calorie counting. It includes a broad food database with a PhotoFood tool that records nutrition facts alongside some 400 recipes. Scan your food package to track up to 40 nutrients, including energy from fat, carbs, and protein. Get insight into your intake of saturated fat, sodium, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Chart your weight loss, record a food log, track steps and exercise, and access blogs and community resources. You can track blood pressure, heart rate, blood cholesterol, medications, test results, and diabetes. The app is free to download, while a subscription for $9 per month or $60 per year is available.
FatSecret, a free calorie counter, weight loss, and dieting app, helps you track your food, exercise, and weight, using a high-quality food and nutrition database. The app integrates with third-party tools and services like Google Fit, Samsung Health, and Fitbit to help your diet succeed. It features an easy-to-use food diary to plan and track your eating, a supportive online community, image recognition of foods, meals, and products, a barcode scanner, a diet calendar to see calories consumed and burned, a weight tracker, and detailed reporting and goals for all your calories and macros. A photo album and journal help to record your progress, while notifications for support, comments, and followers, plus recipes and meal ideas, are also included. Premium subscriptions are available for enhanced features like specialized nutritional meal plans created by the app’s dietitian for Keto, balanced, Mediterranean, intermittent fasting, high protein, low carb, advanced meal planning, and more. The app is free to download, or you can opt for a subscription for $7 per month or $40 for a year.
Cronometer is an accurate and comprehensive nutrition tracker, facilitating the discovery of nutrition and meeting individual weight-loss goals. The free basic version provides nutritional data regardless of diet plan and tracks up to 82 micronutrients. Use the app’s database to log your food and exercise, track your water intake, scan food labels with the built-in barcode scanner, add custom foods and recipes, track your calories, protein, carbs, cholesterol, nutrients, and supplements, and sync nutrition and activity data with apps and devices like Fitbit and Garmin. The app also includes support for intermittent fasting and body mass index (BMI), basal metabolic rate (BMR), activity level, and body fat percentage. You can view nutrition trends and reports over time and see how nutrients and biometrics correlate. Cronometer is free to sign up and use. You can upgrade to the ad-free Gold version for $7 per month or $40 per year to create custom diaries and timestamps, custom charts and biometrics, valuable insight with food suggestions, and more.
- The best smartwatches in 2023: our 11 favorite picks
- The best grocery list apps for iPhone and Android in 2023
- The best fitness trackers in 2023: our 10 favorite picks
- The best walkie-talkie apps for Android and iOS
- The best messaging apps for Android and iOS