Showing posts with label health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label health. Show all posts

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Withings Health products are so helpful to keep track of my health

Withings is an innovative company offering various health tracking devices. Over the past few months I have had the chance to use a few of their different products to track my health trends and it has come in handy the past few weeks since I just got through a bout with the Flu (and before you ask, yes, I did get my flu shot this year).

In this post we will discuss a few of their various popular tracking devices: Body Comp Scale, the Scanwatch smart watch, Thermo thermometer, Sleep tracking mat, and their Blood Pressure Monitor.

Body Comp Scale

The Withings Body Comp is a smart scale that measures more than just your weight. It provides a complete picture of your cardiovascular health, including your body composition, standing heart rate, vascular age, fat and water mass, and even muscle and bone mass.  In a future update they will also include the Basal Metabolic Rate and Metabolic Age. I also enjoyed seeing a localized weather report and air quality analysis during the scan, which is helpful since I have my scale located in my home office, so it is measuring the air quality in a room I spend a lot of time in.

It is nice that it syncs with the Withings Healthmate app on your smartphone. This app allows you to track your progress over time, set goals, and even share your data with your healthcare provider. This new scale is also compatible with the Withings+ health service which gives you feedback and tips on different things you can tweak to motivate you a different way. The Withings Body Cardio is a great way to stay on top of your heart health and make sure that you are taking steps to prevent cardiovascular disease.


The Withings Scanwatch is a stylish wearable device that tracks your daily activity, sleep, and heart rate. It has a long battery life, has advanced heart features and will show alerts and texts. The Withings Smartwatch is perfect for anyone who wants to learn more about their health without putting on a watch that has too many features or can distract you.

A few of the features we enjoyed are its ability to track your heart rate, ECG and pulse oximetry. The Withings Smartwatch also has a dedicated breathing exercise mode that helps you reduce stress. We are pleased to offer a giveaway of a Scanwatch to one of our loyal readers. You can enter using the rafflecopter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thermo Thermometer

The Withings Thermo is a smart temporal thermometer that takes accurate readings in just two seconds and provides an easy-to-read measurement complete with a color-coded fever indicator. It is a non-invasive, contactless thermometer that uses infrared technology to measure your body temperature. The Withings Thermo is perfect for parents who want to monitor their child's temperature without disturbing their sleep.

The Withings Thermo is also a connected device that syncs with the Withings Health Mate app. This app allows you to track your temperature over time and even share your data with your healthcare provider.

The Thermo was very useful when I was sick with the flu because I was able to track my temperature (and fever) and also knew when it went down and could correlate that information along with when I took medication because I kept track of the medication timing while the Health Mate app kept track of my temperature.

If you have multiple people in your house like we do, you can keep track of everyone's temperatures separately by assigning the temperature you just took to their profile right on the Thermo device. It is super helpful!

BPM Blood Pressure Monitor

The Withings BPM is a wireless blood pressure monitor that allows you to track your blood pressure at home. It is easy to use and provides accurate readings in just seconds. The Withings BPM is perfect for anyone who wants to monitor their blood pressure and make sure that they are staying within healthy ranges.

The Withings BPM is also a connected device that syncs with the Withings Health Mate app. This app allows you to track your blood pressure over time, set reminders to take your readings, and even share your data with your healthcare provider.

Sleep Tracking Mat

The Sleep tracking mat is a device that goes under your mattress and will track your sleep without you having to wear or physically touch anything. The mat has built-in sensors that will track your sleep cycles, snoring, heart rate among other things.

I have been using it for a few months and have enjoyed learning about my total sleep time, difference of time spent in various stages of sleep, when I wake up and how long it takes me to fall asleep.

This has been very useful as I have sleep apnea and while I sleep using a BiPAP machine, which has its own monitoring, the sleep mat provides yet another method of tracking my health while I sleep.

The Withings Body Comp scale

NOTE: I received sample units in order to facilitate this review. They also generously provided a Scanwatch for me to give away to one of my loyal readers. No other compensation was provided. All opinions, as always, are our own.

Sunday, November 14, 2021

A Mental Health Map of information in your hands from Genomind!

Mental Health is more important than ever these days and you now can order a map of your own mental health based on your genetics from a company called Genomind.

The Mental Health Map by Genomind tests for specific genetic variants that have been shown to influence behavior, mood, stress response and more across the 7 Core Genetic Mental Health Capabilities: Mood, Eating Behavior, Social Behavior, Anxiety, Focus and Memory, Sleep, and Substance Use and Habits.

One of the best benefits of getting the Mental Health Map test is that you also receive access to an app called NeuroFlow which lets you track your feelings and provides activities to complete along with guided breathing. I have found that the most useful and one nice perk is when you complete the activities, you earn stars/points which can be redeemed for gift cards once you accumulate enough points. The best benefit is greater insight into yourself!

They also have a clinical product called PGx which you can test 15 genes for core anxiety and depression or 24 genes for a full mental health report to inform treatment decisions for a range of mental health conditions. The PGx reports have to be ordered by a physician and can help guide medication from data rather than just trial and error. 

The test for the Mental Health Map and the PGx products are the same - you get the kit, swab, ship and then get the results. If you're getting the results for the PGx your clinician will receive the results and then talk to you about them. If you get the Mental Health Map, you would order that yourself and you get a 30 minute phone conversation with a professional consultant who will give you personalized insights and actions to help support you and learn about your mental well-being.

I had the chance to review both options and found it very insightful to get a map of my own mental health and talking about it with a coach from Genomind through the 7 core cababilities. I found the results from the PGx test to be very helpful as I have found it very difficult that there still is a trial and error approach to some medications. With the availability of the PGx clinical test that has been studied it has been helpful to find medications (even ibuprofen and acetaminophen) which may respond better because of certain genes.

NOTE: I received these tests at no cost to me in order to faciliatate this review. The Genomind team was no a part of any of my opinions and analysis and all opinions are our own. No other compensation was provided.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Summer colds... *sneeze*

One thing I've forgotten is when you have an infant and toddler you get re-exposed to many viruses. Since the beginning of the year, someone in our family has had some type of cold, ear infection, virus, etc and it's getting tiresome.

The more I think about it, the more content I am that it's just a cold/infection and isn't anything more serious. We are thankful that we are generally healthy and as the old saying goes... this too shall pass.

Have you experienced this when your kids were very little? I'm just surprised that no one really spoke about it or warned us. It would have just been nice to know!

Looking forward to times when everyone in the house is healthy!

I hope you are all having a nice summer, my readers...

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sorry I've been out of touch. You can thank Pneumonia.

Sorry I've been out of touch. You can thank Pneumonia for that one. For the past few weeks I haven't been feeling myself and have been sick with some type of cold/virus since the last few days of 2016. Since around the beginning of February, I ended up in urgent care with pneumonia. They took great care of me and after some antibiotics and rest, I got rid of the infection. Thankfully. I don't wish that on anyone! I have a few things in the pipeline for the blog so stay tuned folks...

Monday, September 19, 2016

Flash Giveaway! You can win an entry to the Canton Road Race on Sunday!

So, I'm back to trying to eat healthier and live a better life. What better way to do it than train for a 5k? When did I decide to start training for said 5k? A week ago...

In any event, I've done a few 5k's in my life and a very wise person once told me "finish times over finish lines" which is a mantra I tell myself when I'm ready to turn around and head towards the car.

So, I'm super excited about doing a 5k along with a kids fun run with my daughter this coming Sunday 9/25 at Reebok's world HQ in Canton, MA. You can join us in the fun for the 12th annual Canton Road Race, benefitting the Canton Association of Business and Industry Charitable Fund, Inc (CABI), a nonprofit organization. CABI distributes 100% of the proceeds to local beneficiaries such as the Canton Food Pantry and Massachusetts Hospital School, and also toward scholarships awarded to students at Canton High and Blue Hills Regional Schools. It's really a great way to support the local community.

This year, race options include a 5k, a new 10k course and a Kid's One-Mile Fun Run or Wheelchair Race. Since the course begins and ends at the Reebok HQ, you'll be able to shop the Reebok Corporate Store on race day and receive a 50% discount on your entire purchase!

I'm also excited to say that I've been given a complimentary entry to give away to one of my lucky readers. This one is going to have to go fast since the race is on Sunday, so the deadline to enter is 12:00 AM on 9/21 - a quick day turnaround! Tell your friends!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I'm also excited to be running wearing KT Tape as an official KTTape Ambassador, which will keep my muscles in shape ;) You can get 15% off your KTTape order with my special code at PARENTALIDEAS15

NOTE: I was provided with a free entry to the 5k for myself and a lucky reader as well as an entry to the Kids Fun Run for my daughter. No other compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Wireless Bluetooth Headphones that are great for general use

I had the chance to review the AYL Wireless Bluetooth Headphones model AX8 recently from and found that these headphones are great for general use. I tried them while running, talking on the phone, walking around town and general use while connected to my iPhone 6s plus and found that they are pretty great for $30 Bluetooth headphones instead of dropping $200 for Powerbeats Wireless earbuds. Admittedly they weren't as comfortable as the Powerbeats or JayBird headphones, but then again, for the price you can't really argue with it.

While the fit may certainly be a personal preference choice, I happened to think that they are pretty great and would recommend them if you're looking for a reasonably priced pair of wireless earbuds to go running with or to use at the gym. The microphone is set up a few inches off of the earbud which can be a little annoying but most of the people I called didn't seem to mind.

NOTE: I was provided with a pair of the AYL Wireless headphones to facilitate this review. No other compensation was provided and as always, all opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links to amazon. If you click on the link I get a very small percentage of the purchase. Thanks!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Finish at the 50 5k 2016 Recap

Last Sunday, July 3rd, I had the opportunity to run in the Patriot Place/Harvard Pilgrim Finish at the 50 5k for the second year in a row. The cool part about doing this run two years in a row is that you can compare the two. If you're interested, you can read the last year's race recap here.

The Race Weekend Expo was three days and spread out the various activities. We went early Saturday to pick up my race bib while we were running other activities and I got my race shirt, some Muscle MilkKrave Jerky and Power Crunch Bars since they all had tents set up for you to get samples and get special deals. It was great to load up!

We had gone to a pool party mid-week and I think we all caught some kind of stomach bug since Emily wasn't feeling so great and ended up throwing up. We got concerned Saturday night when she couldn't keep any liquids down so we went to the hospital where she is going to deliver just to ensure mom and baby are okay. Luckily, they were so we headed home late Saturday night.

Sunday morning, Emily and Lily started to feel better but still weren't 100%. Emily knew I had been working towards this 5k so she didn't want to see me miss it. I told her it's ok and I can always run next year but she insisted that I complete it, so I decided to go.

I went to Gillette and ran the race and it was great to go all around the stadium. The folks over at DMSE sports who put on the event were great and really did an amazing job! There were 3 water breaks (1 mile, 1.5 mile and 2 mile) and it was so cool to run through the stadium once again. The race course was the same as last year and provided excellent views. The weather was just outstanding as it was perfect running conditions for a 6 pm start.

My favorite part was running through the Patriots helmet tunnel onto the field of Gillette and then finishing at the 50 yard line. It was neat to be on a freshly made turf field since it was just put down for the season. It had a lot of spring and bounce in the step. I also hung around and even got the chance to meet former Patriot Jerod Mayo. He was such a nice guy!

NOTE: I was provided with a complimentary bib to run the Finish at the 50 5k. No other compensation was provided. As always, all opinions are my own.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Finish at the 50 and save $5 before 6/3.

I'm going to be participating in the Finish at the 50 again this year and am really looking forward to it! This annual 5 and 10k race and kids fun run is held at Gillette Stadium at Patriot Place in Foxboro, MA on July 3rd in the afternoon/evening with fireworks to follow. The keystone of the race is that you get to finish at the 50 yard line of Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots and New England Revolution.

If you're interested in running, the great folks at Patriot Place have given us a code PARENTALRUNNER that you can use for $5 off an adult entry to either the 5k or 10k race. Act quick because this code expires on Friday 6/3.

NOTE: I was provided with a comp bib for the race in exchange for the pre-publicity as well as a post-race followup post. All opinions are my own.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Withings Home Wi-Fi security camera

This blog post contains affiliate links.

The Withings Home Baby Bundle - Wireless Video Baby Monitor is a great Wi-Fi security camera with a lot of embedded perks: video streaming, air quality monitor, push notification alerts for motion activity and cloud storage of video footage. The Home packs a 5 megapixel HD camera with infrared night vision that has a field-of-view of 135 degrees which is pretty wide without looking like a wide angle camera. It has sensors for sound, motion and air-quality which will be able to alert you via the companion iOS app (iPhone, iPad, AppleTV or Apple Watch).

The product is great because it has two-way audio with “push-to-talk” option via the iOS app that let’s you speak to whoever is in the room. They also have a baby bundle package which pairs the camera with two covers: one blue and one pink which slip over the woodgrain finish.

We think this product is a great option for families who are looking for a baby monitor or just a plain security camera. The two-way audio is a great way to soothe your baby to sleep from anywhere by just using your iPhone and the camera. You also have the option to turn on a Lullaby mode which turns on an LED light and sound program to lull your child back to sleep.

Priced at $199, it offers quite a few bells and whistles to help ease parents’ anxiety. The air-quality monitor is really nice because it can warn you when carbon-based Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) in parts-per-million go above a specified thresh-hold and also tracks the data so you can try and figure out if it’s a one-time occurrence or something that needs to be looked in to. 

The Apple Watch integration is really nice because you can also be notified when there is motion and just glance at your watch to see an image of what’s going on.

I can’t believe it (and I know you won’t be able to as well) but the great folks at Withings have offered us a Home security camera to give away to one of our lucky readers… Enter through the Rafflecopter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

NOTE: I received a Withings Home to facilitate this review. All opinions are my own. There was no promise given of a positive review, but this camera rocks! Winner must be 18+. This blog post contains affiliate links.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Withings Aura Connected Alarm Clock and Sleep monitor

The Withings Aura Connected Alarm Clock and Sleep monitor is a high-tech alarm clock combined with a sleek equally high-tech lamp. This device gives you the perfect way to fall asleep and wake up each day while monitoring your sleep using the optional sleep sensor.

The sleep sensor sits under your mattress and is connected via a quite long USB cable to the Aura alarm clock and tracks your sleep duration, sleep cycle variation (deep, light and REM stages), time awake and wakes you at the best time during your sleep cycle within the time frame specified in the Withings Health app on your iOS device.

Once paired with the iOS app, the Aura goes to work. You set it up to your home Wi-Fi network and it automatically sets the time, monitors the room temperature (hoping that it’s in a comfortable range of 65-72 degrees F), and can wake you up to your favorite songs on Spotify.

It uses research that Withings has done to use the lamp to display optimized colors which promote the secretion of sleep hormones if you use it to fall asleep. It will also play a sound program you specify from a predefined list of songs designed to help induce sleep.

We strongly recommend this alarm clock and sleep monitor if you're looking for a better night's sleep and a way to get more data about how you sleep!

NOTE: We were provided with a Withings Aura to facilitate this review. There was no promise made of a positive review. All opinions are our own.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Finding it hard to eat well right now

OK, so I don't know about you but for some reason I'm finding it hard to stay motivated and eat well right now. I've been stuck in a rut and am just craving the bad foods - pizzas, breads, wings, ice cream, etc. Luckily, I have some great friends and family who are helping to keep me positive and motivated - let's turn this ship around and get it going...

Who has some great ideas for staying motivated to eat and live healthier?

After all, I need to get back out there and start training for my next 5k which is coming up in a month! Yikes!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Paying attention to what you eat and how much you sleep

So.... I've been starting to pay closer attention to what I eat and how much I sleep in addition to how much I'm moving. While the winter weather has been better than last year (thankfully!), I've actually found it hard to stay motivated to be mindful about what I eat and how much I move.

That being said, I've committed myself to trying to lose 10 lbs in 2 months on weight watchers. It worked just under a year ago, so I'm hoping that I can keep at it.

I'm also excited to let you all know that I'm trying out the entire Withings suite of health monitoring devices so I can give you my take on it all! Over the next month, we'll be looking at the Withings Blood Pressure Monitor, Aura Sleep system, SmartBody Analyzer/Scale, Home Security Camera/Baby Monitor and then a few other surprises.

Stay tuned...

Friday, October 23, 2015

Foxboro 5k recap

On October 4, Emily and I participated in the Foxboro 5k which benefitted the Hockomock YMCA in Foxboro. This was a great run that was preceded by a kids Fun Run in the morning. Preregistration was a breeze as it was all handled online. We got a really nice tech-dry-fit shirt that was included with registration (the kids got a kids t-shirt). We received email notifications telling us the details and the folks at the Y were great to deal with! They had an inspiration station where you could decorate signs to hold up as your friends were running by.

The kids race was at 9 am and Lily had a great time. The 1 mile course was around the grounds of the Y and in the parking lot so we didn’t need to be concerned that the kids were running in the street. Additionally, Foxboro Police were stationed at the main crossroads at Mechanic Street and had closed off traffic so we didn’t need to worry about any cars zipping by.

The adult 5k started at 10 am and Emily and I actually ran for the entire first mile of the 5k. This was a personal record for us. Then we kept walking/running for the rest of the it and there were really nice volunteers at Y staff that directed us at each turn. This was SUPER helpful because for all of the other 5k’s that we have done this year, while there have been people directing runners, there have certainly been times when we have been wondering whether or not we were going in the right direction. With the Foxboro 5k these guys had thought of everything and we knew that we were going the right way. Also at each mile, they had someone with a stop watch who was telling us exactly what our time was. I thought that was also super helpful and encouraging!

When we finished we got Finishers Medals which was nice so that we could add them to our collection! The kids also got a finisher medal which Lily really enjoyed…

After the race, there were some snacks that we got and the nice people at Peapod/Stop and Shop had tons of water to give out so we stocked up! We also got a massage from the great people at Tiger Lilly spa in Foxboro. There were some bouncy houses for the kids and huge bubbles so they could play around with them. I also got some stretching technique hints from the people at Baystate Physical Therapy which was cool because I didn’t know the proper way to stretch before/after a run. They also gave some t-shirts and towels as cool swag.

Overall, the race was a huge success and we look forward to running next year!

NOTE: We were provided bibs to run the 5k and kids fun run. There was no promise made of a positive review. All opinions are our own.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Gearing up for the Foxboro 5k on Sunday!

We're gearing up and preparing for the Foxboro 5k on Sunday presented by the Hockomock YMCA in Foxboro... This will be the fourth 5k that I've done this year! It's been a little while since I've been out regularly running/walking/jogging, so I am not expecting a personal record (PR) in terms of time. One wise person once told me "finish lines over finish times" and that's what i'm going with!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Harvard Pilgrim Finish at the 50 - 5 and 10k - THIS FRIDAY!

Hey everyone!

I'm happy to report that my weight loss is going well. I'm now just over 17 labs lost overall since I started this journey. It's been a while since I"ve seen the scale below 210, but it's now there! I hope I can keep going in this direction.

To that note, Emily, Lily and I are all still preparing for the Harvard Pilgrim Finish at the 50 5k this Friday at Patriot Place. Tonight, I went for a run in the misty weather and it was quite refreshing. Now, I can run for 5 minutes straight without getting winded. That wouldn't have happened just a month ago!

If you'd like to join us, you can register online through Wednesday, July 1 at

There's a great Kids Fun Run starting at 3 pm, where the kids can all run around the stadium field and finish at the 50 as well. They will get a special finisher medal, too!

There's also great deals available for runners throughout Patriot Place and you can also browse the Fitness Expo each day. There will also be some great fireworks right at dusk.

NOTE: We have been provided with complimentary entry to the Finish at the 50 5k. There was no promise made of a positive review... Can't wait to see how we do!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Dave is on a journey... of health and wellness.

Well, I woke up a week ago and decided right after watching runners in the Boston Marathon that I would use this year as a year of health and wellness. I am trying to become more mindful in my approach to life and why not put that towards eating as well. I also found that it really helped getting a few samples of healthy food at the Marathon as I have been having a smoothie every morning!

In any event, I committed myself to starting to eat healthier, getting more exercise, and being more present. To that end, I joined WeightWatchers at the suggestion of a friend of mine. I joined last Wednesday (4/22) and my starting weight was 227 lbs. I saw that number and was shocked but said to myself "hey... we all have to start somewhere."

I then went to my first meeting on Thursday morning 4/23 and it was great! I found out that it was led by a blogger whom I have been following for about a year and she is really energetic and fun! It's crazy when worlds collide like that!

I committed to walking every day and trying to reach my goal of 10,000 steps using my Withings Pulse activity monitor (more on that later). I am happy to report that over the past week I have walked 63,773 steps! That is the most I've walked in a week!!!!

  • Sun 4/26: 12,656
  • Sat 4/25 13,610
  • Fri 4/24 12,130
  • Thu 4/23 13,470
  • Wed 4/22 10,162
  • Tue 4/21 7,629
  • Mon 4/20 10,121
  • Sun 4/19 9,714

I also didn't realize but I would be missing my second meeting this coming Thursday so after an amazing week of walking I went to weight in this morning and weighed 224.2 lbs. I had lost 2.8 lbs after my first week. Pretty proud of that one... Hopefully I can start a trend here...